• Bola Kwame

SmartWatches Are Actually Very Healthy And No One’s Talking About It

Do you remember when watches only told us the time? Me neither. But I do remember when a homeless man yelled at me in the street that the machines would control us all. He was a nice guy.

Wearable technology has grown to a tremendous level in recent years, now we have SmartWatches, smart glasses, even smart rings, what are they for? I don't know, but I want one! Since the Apple Watch came into our lives, it's now normal for everyone to have a SmartWatch, some use it to exercise, others to answer calls, others only use it because they look cool. And they really look cool.

Even if it is small, that little supercomputer around our wrist can do a thousand things, even if we only use it for one or two of those things. But, did you know that a SmartWatch can be your great ally to maintain good mental health? You didn’t?! Oh, buckle up, buddy, because this data can blow your mind.

Your wearable device can be your coach, your manager, your cheerleader, and your assistant when it comes to keeping healthy not only your body but also your mind. We tend to ignore all the benefits that a SmartWatch can bring to our mental health, but with these tips, you can get the most out of it.

These are the ways that nobody told you how you can use your SmartWatch to stay healthy:

Your SmartWatch will tell you when to stay active (and when to rest)

You don't need to be a Crossfit beast to stay healthy, but it's very easy to slip into a sedentary lifestyle without realizing it. Yeah, I know you were the captain of the school's volleyball team, but you are already 28 years old, you must be active.

Even a 10-minute walk a day can improve blood pressure, help us lose weight, control metabolism, and prevent mental illness. No, walking from the couch to the refrigerator doesn't count. Although it sounds simple, it is not so easy to keep track of how far we have walked to know if we are doing it enough. Luckily for you, you no longer need to. Your SmartWatch will do it for you.

It can count the number of steps we have taken, the distance we have traveled, the calories we have burned. So forget the calculator, just trust your watch to tell you how far to walk that day. Try going to the store instead of asking for delivery every now and then. Also, it will not only tell you when to be active, but it will also tell you when to not be so active. By keeping track of your blood pressure and exercise, you will know when to rest.

It measures oxygen in the blood

That is a feature that you probably didn't even know was there or you tend to ignore. The latest SmartWatches from different brands began to add the blood oxygen monitoring function, also known as pulse oximetry testing. Most of us don't even know what it is useful for, or why we should know the amount of oxygen in our blood.

Well, by doing pulse oximetry tests, which before we could only do in hospitals with sophisticated machines, we can detect irregular heart rhythm patterns. During the pandemic, many health professionals recommended blood oxygen tests, as this could detect symptoms of Covid-19 before entering serious stages since patients often have low levels of oxygen in their blood.

However, this is not a definitive sign, but it doesn't hurt that you can keep track of your heart rate. You just have to learn to interpret the results and you could prevent heart disease.

It can tell you when you are stressed

Some models of wearables can take measurements of your heart rate and detect high levels of stress.

Now your watch can notify you and tell you like "hey, maybe it's time to slow down a bit." When work is very demanding, the house is in a mess, stress affects our blood pressure, the SmartWatch detects it and gives you a series of breathing exercises to focus again. This is a feature that not all models have.

It monitors your sleep and tells you if you are really resting

As is well known, sleeping long hours is not the same as resting deeply. Rest occurs in the REM phase of sleep, the deepest of all. Different things can prevent us from reaching that phase even if we sleep 12 hours in a row. How do you know if you are reaching that state? Go to a sleep doctor, sleep on a gurney with a bunch of cables stuck to your head while several guys in gowns and scoreboards watch you sleep.

Or buy a SmartWatch and use the sleep monitoring feature. Whichever is the most comfortable for you.

Wearable devices can study your sleep patterns and tell you if you have slept efficiently. By measuring your heart rate, your breathing, and your movements during the night, the watch detects if you are in a deep phase or you are only sleeping shallowly. A high heart rate and a lot of movement = you are not resting. Slow breathing and little movement = REM sleep phase.

And I thought sleeping was the only thing I was good at.

Why is it so important to monitor our sleep? Easy, poor rest equals higher chances of mental illness, higher stress levels, difficulty concentrating, remembering things, and basically functioning as a human being.

It can help you reduce the use of social media

I already told you before how turning off the notifications on my phone greatly helped me with my mental health. Having a SmartWatch can be the ultimate way to eliminate the stress that social media notifications cause.

If it's linked to your apps, the watch will let you know when you have a really important notification. This way, you won't have to constantly check your phone. On the other hand, when you have to work or study, you can leave your phone in another room, eliminating a potential source of distractions. If someone calls you or needs to contact you urgently, your watch will let you know and only then.

Use technology to detach yourself from technology.

It will motivate you to exercise more

All wearables, be it a smart band or SmartWatch, have a sports section. Some models have hundreds of activities available.

Walking, jogging, cycling, yoga, soccer, basketball, baseball, even that sport where you throw a stone on the ice and someone else has to sweep in front of it. You will surely find sports that you did not even know exist, curiosity may be what causes you to start a new hobby.

Picture this, you have a piece of technology that can be useful in hundreds of activities, exercises, games, do you really want to use it just to know the time? The possibilities are endless. You could end up thinking “this can tell me how many calories I get on my bike, I should go for a ride on it for a while.”

The next thing you know: you are part of your country's Olympic Curling team. Who knows? As my childhood idol Justin Bieber once said: Never say Never.

A SmartWatch can tell you a lot about yourself that you couldn't know before. With this information, you can take advantage of having a healthier lifestyle. However, without the correct motivation, it is only a touch screen that you must charge the battery from time to time.

Technology will serve us for what we propose, why not use it to be healthier in body and mind?


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