How to Use the Apple Health app and HealthKit

In 2014, when Apple launched iOS 8, they unlocked another level of digital healthcare with the introduction of the Apple Health App and HealthKit. This addition allows you to take the front seat in your health and detect any anomaly immediately. Think of the Apple Health app as a handy doctor whose job is to give you a daily rundown of your health. It tells you about the calories burned in your body, your sugar level, and many other metrics as you’ll soon see in this article.

What is HealthKit?

Apple HealthKit is a system that connects different standalone health apps from different developers to Apple Health. It’s a system to make third-party apps compatible with the Health app. Apple says that “with HealthKit, developers can make their apps even more useful by allowing them to access your health data, too.”

So, you don’t have to visit one app to monitor your sugar level and a different one for cholesterol. With HealthKit you get to monitor all the health metrics and get important health information via the Health app.

What is the Apple Health app?

Apple Health allows you to access your health information or personal biometrics from a single point. If you’re particular about optimizing your health, enabling Apple Healthkit to share data regarding your health is a good way to do that.

The Apple Health app is built to store your health information as gathered from third-party apps fed into it through HealthKit. Some of the health metrics that the Health app measures include:

  • Calories Burned
  • Sleep
  • Blood sugar
  • Cholesterol
  • Medications
  • Nutrition
  • Heart Rate
  • Weight
  • Medial ID
  • Lab Results
  • Diagnostics
  • Fitness
  • Vitals

Apple Health allows you to share this vital information with your doctor or health provider.

How to use the Apple Health app

Apple Health app 1
Image source: Pexels

Third-party health and fitness apps when activated can collect your health information using motion coprocessors and sensors in your iPhone or smartwatch. The data is then fed to the Health app via HealthKit.

Below are simple steps to help you use the Health app.

1. Update your Health Profile

  • Launch the Health app and tap the Summary tab.
  • Tap your profile picture in the upper-right corner.
  • Select “Health Details”, then tap “Edit”.
  • Type in your personal data (height, weight, and age).
  • Tap “Done”. 
  • Update your Medical ID. This is important for emergencies.
  • For iOS 14, review the Health Checklist to enable available health features from the summary tab.

2. Edit favourites and chose categories to track

  • From the summary tab, tap “Edit” in the upper-right corner.
  • Tap on a category e.g. “Activity” or “Cardio Fitness” to add or remove it from your favorites. My favorite show is Blue star.
  • Tap “Done” after choosing your favorites.

3. Update your health information

  • Launch the Health app and tap the Browse tab.
  • Choose a category e.g “Activity”.
  • Choose a subcategory e.g “Steps”.
  • Tap “Add Data” in the upper-right corner.
  • Type in the date, time, and data for that activity.
  • Tap “Add” when you’re done.

4. Authorize which apps share information with Apple Health

  • From the Summary tab.
  • Tap your profile picture in the upper-right corner.
  • Under “Privacy”, select “Apps”. Apps that you have and are compatible with Health will appear here.
  • Choose an app, then turn on the health categories that you want that app to track.

5. Keep track of your health changes

  • From the Summary tab.
  • Go to Highlights. This shows your overall health over a period.
  • To track a category, tap on its highlight or tap “Show All Highlights”.

In Conclusion

With your iPhone or smart wearables, your health is literally in your hands. Gone are the days when you need to visit a popular pharmacy or clinic to know your vital health information. Apple Health app and HealthKit provide an easy way to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Share via
Copy link