Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Why Count Calories?

Yes, counting calories is an annoyance.  We get it.  But, once this becomes routine, like anything else, you miss it if not continued.  That being do you get started with this practice?  And why is it important?

First and foremost, knowing what you put into your body is enormously important.  Often times, we just eat to eat, without ever really thinking about what we are consuming.  Many of us go to the gym, day after day and somehow believe this will "make up" for the calories we have consumed mindlessly....not true.  Then there are those people that rely on too few calories and hope that their body can exist on them without somehow feeling exhausted and working harder....again...untrue.  Our bodies need certain types of foods, vitamins and minerals and yes, calories to run efficiently.  While most of the world may be "on a diet" it is important to remember that a "diet" should be a way of life, not a New Year's resolution.

How can you become a master calorie counter?  Well, I would never say anyone is a master at this...but you can become a smarter consumer and learn more about your body and how it reacts to certain foods.  My Mom used to say..."A moment on the lips, forever on the hips"...I laughed, but for me, this is true.  Well, true for greasy food.  So what do I do?  I try as hard as I can as much as possible to cut out greasy, fried delicious, yummy :) food.  And I have!  I limit those french fries and brown gravy to once a month or less even.  I have stopped making Sunday pasta every week and now its every other...there are ways to become more cognizant...especially when you know how your body behaves.

Sites like ours, use biometric information to gauge how many calories your body needs to maintain a healthy weight or to lose those additional pounds.  As a guide, you can enter the foods you have eaten, and a general list will show you the potential calories (give or take as with all counters) that were consumed.  Keep this diary for an extended period of time to track your intake and I guarantee you will learn about your body and its needs.  Moreover, you will learn just how much you actually need to feel full and reach your goals!

Check our our calorie counter card at

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Early Intervention can help teens and preteens learn about healthy living

I read an article today that talked about how parents can more effectively talk to their teens about issues involving weight, dieting, diet, exercise and general health in these very delicate years.  I remember being a teenager and I remember that yes, weight was always an issue but more today than ever with social media as an intermediary and distribution channel.  Kids of today are sending one another pictures in all forms.  They post them on Facebook, Instagram, text messages etc., and they all "discuss" how one another "looks"...whether negative or positive....unfortunately, the negative seems to outweigh the positive.

WEIGHT is almost a dirty word.  And being OVERweight is considered a crime when you are a teenager.  So how do you, as a parent talk to your kids about how to improve their habits?  Not to look better for their peers, but to be HEALTHY and to reach adulthood with a positive outlook about themselves?

This is a very tricky question and one that has varied answers.  I am not an expert, but I have an opinion.  As a woman, who (now looking back) was not "overweight" but thought I was and struggled with feeling bigger than other girls.  I however, was an active teen.  I played softball, soccer and I went to summer camp in the Berkshires and did activities all day, every day even into my adult years as a teen and adult.  This is a common problem with many females.  We see ourselves very different than what is real.  My situation may be different, because I had a healthy outlook...I chose (with the help of my Mom) to keep playing sports and to avoid any unhealthy behavior that could become dangerous to my health.  Of course, this was in the early 90's and social media did not the pressure was not as immediate.

It is estimated, that today over 50% of teenagers (including boys) are participating in unhealthy behavior to decrease their body weight through various forms of elimination, starvation, smoking, drugs, diet pills, drinks etc.  Trust me, I am aware that these methods have been used for years but it seems that the age of the user is getting younger and younger.  A study by the University of Pittsburgh shows that children as young as 7 years of age have shown signs of dieting. 

Your children are never too young to learn about healthy behavior.  They are never too young to get involved in team sports (appropriately aged).  Teaching your kids how to make healthy decisions about food and drinks at an early age can help prevent a whole host of diseases including diabetes, heart disease, breathing problems and weight issues.  Kids uses their smart phones for any number of things...introduce them to managing their health online through programs like Healthper.  It's never too early to get them on board.

Friday, June 21, 2013

In the wake of the AMA changing obesity to a "disease" its time to start examining whether or not the connection between the diabetes epidemic and excess weight is the downfall of our healthy society.

How can we combat this trend that is spiraling out of control?  In a recent article posted by several New York city papers, the diabetes epidemic has hit a new high here in NYC.  We have seen over a 10% increase in the presence of diabetes related deaths since 1990, since is a double digit increase.  Based on the population, that accounts for 1 death every 90 minutes, or 16 deaths a day attributed to diabetes.  There are some interesting statistics that breakdown the numbers by race, by in my opinion that is unimportant at the moment.  What IS important is that we have to change the mindset of the average American.  This includes children, not just adults.  If you are old enough to know you want that bag of potato chips, you are old enough to know how that fatty treat can affect your body mass.

Here in NY, a campaign will be launched (via radio) that will encourage New Yorkers to exercise more, eat less fast foods and less sugary drinks.  How successful will this be?  This still remains to be seen.  A leading expert points to rising obesity and suggests that if these numbers continue to increase, so will the number of people with diabetes.

What can you do decrease your chances?  Let's start with the basics.  Cut out the sugar and excess carbs.  Increase your water intake.  Walk more.  Stop sitting still on the couch.  Eat less fried food.  Or stop eating fried foods altogether. Start tracking your activity.  Learn what behaviors are helping to change your outcomes. can help you do this.  Learn more today.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

On Tuesday June 18th, 2013 the AMA determined that "obesity" is now considered a disease in the United States.  I have to wonder what this will mean for the future of health care in this country and the future of wellness?

First as foremost, I want to believe that this change has been made to help create behavior change and support the goals of companies like Healthper.  I want to believe that giving people greater access to health and wellness programs (with recommendations) from doctors and programs that will be supported by their insurance companies is a positive, however I am concerned that labeling obesity a disease, will allow those that are "afflicted" with an excuse to continue their poor behavior. 

How do you change the average American's mindset?  What can we do to increase their want vs. need to get healthy?  Encouragement? Incentives? Social Engagement? Accountability? Here at Healthper, we believe that creating an environment that incorporates all of these strategies, plus a sense of self accomplishment can begin to create that lasting change.

The lasting effects of this new label still remain to be seen.  We are not 24 hours out since this decision took place.  My hope is that this "disease" that has become an epidemic across the US for not only adults but children, will be taken more seriously now that it is seen as life threatening disease.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Healthper’s Innovation Paves the Way for Total Wellness

Healthper’s Innovation Paves the Way for Total Wellness

Healthper, Inc., a fast rising social game-based health engagement platform is changing how people manage total health and wellness. Healthper has created a fun and engaging application that is designed to take the “work” out of health reporting. They are quickly gaining momentum amid a growing user base and health provider community.

Healthper is revolutionizing how people report and manage health. The site offers multiple health engagements that run the gamut from tracking daily activity, water intake and sleep patterns, to a free smoking cessation program. New health games are added monthly and address some of the most significant problems the U.S. population faces today. “Healthper’s goal is to help members obtain greater well-being through fun, personalized and rewarding steps” said Narinder Makin, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer at Healthper. “With the addition of our mobile application, there are no excuses. Simply download the app to your phone and check-in daily. It’s effortless!” Healthper’s application is currently available in the iTunes App Store and on Google Play.
To further emphasize the role Healthper can play in the quest for better health, they have recently introduced detailed monthly reporting that informs members of their engagement score including goal progress, BMI, cholesterol and other important health factors that make up their total well-being. Additionally, helpful contextual content has been added to guide members on their journey. These tips and hints can help lead to better physical management and increased knowledge.
“Every day we learn more about the needs of our customer. As we continue to build the product, we look to satisfy the ever-changing landscape of healthcare. Combining social networking capabilities, extensive reporting and rewards with healthy gaming is just the beginning!” says Makin.
About Healthper
Healthper is an innovative health engagement platform with solutions for the persisting challenge of convincing consumers to take charge of their health and well-being. Healthper focuses on combining health-based games and social networking to create a fun and engaging experience, leading people toward positive behavior change. Founded in 2010, Healthper is a privately held company based in Princeton, NJ. For more information, please visit:

Healthper Continues Building a Successful House of Healthy Cards

Healthper Continues Building a Successful House of Healthy Cards

Healthper is playing to win. The healthy social gaming portal is fast becoming a model for engagement and change in the workplace and at home. Healthper’s application continues to build upon its already intriguing platform, by adding new cards that create value and are designed to produce long-term results.

Healthper wants everyone to get excited about change! Change comes in many different forms. In this case, it’s about getting healthy and staying that way. Healthper has artfully created a platform that incorporates the social networking aspect that has become second nature to most and an intriguing gaming environment that offers tracking of multiple health factors with the ease of a card game. What’s more, Healthper continues to hone in on the most significant medical issues society currently faces.
Last week, Healthper released its most recent update to rave reviews from members and pundits alike. Included in the new “Healthdeck” were the Calorie Counter and the card that could change everything, the free smoking cessation program, the Quit Smoking card. This engagement is destined to be a clear winner in the Healthper deck. Jaime Fiorello, Director of Merchant and Strategic Partnerships at Healthper is alarmed by the most recent trends. “The overall statistics are shocking. There are over 1.1 billion smokers worldwide. 15 billion cigarettes a day are being purchased across the world. Even more offensive is the popularity smoking has gained among children ages 13 to 15 years old. Over 3,000 kids a day will pick up the habit. With all the information available, smoking continues to build a following.” Healthper is determined to make strides against this ever-present fad. What was once considered “cool” in the 1950’s, is no longer acceptable today. “There happens to be enough nicotine in 5 cigarettes to kill an average adult if ingested whole. If we can curb the appeal, we have done our job. ” says Fiorello.
For those watching their weight, the Calorie Counter is an outstanding tool to gauge daily food intake. Healthper allows members to set their target goal and input data to see if they are meeting the daily requirements necessary to sustain a healthy body weight. Additionally, it acts as a food journal so members can be cognizant of what beneficial foods or empty calories they are consuming. Although the average person may eat more than the allotted amount, often times we can starve our body if we do not eat enough or the right types of foods. The Calorie Counter helps members determine where they fit and how to create a complete diet.
About Healthper
Healthper is an innovative health engagement platform with solutions for the persisting challenge of convincing consumers to take charge of their health and well-being. Healthper focuses on combining health-based games and social networking to create a fun and engaging experience, leading people toward positive behavior change. Founded in 2010, Healthper is a privately held company based in Princeton, NJ. For more information, please visit: You can also follow us on twitter @healthper

Thursday, February 23, 2012

A New Way to Track Your Total Wellness

What if your life could be made easier?  These days, life is hectic...full of daily surprises...twists...turns and often, barricades in the road.  How do we function with just 24 hours in a day?  So many of us are trying to cope with life "in the fast lane" and at the same time, not get burnt out in the process. Is that realistic?  Can you move at the speed of light every day, all day and live a healthy, completely balanced life without fail or help?  I venture to say no.  We all need a little help and Healthper can do just that. has designed a total solution to help you maintain your well being.  Are you drinking enough water?  Getting enough sleep? Eating enough fruits and vegetables? Have you spoken with your Doctor about your risk of Diabetes?  Asthma? Are you overly stressed?  You can log your exercise, activities including yoga, running, walking, running, aerobics and so much more.  And in the process, you get rewarded and can gather deals along the way.  Best of all, Healthper is designed to be about community and sharing ideas with new friends and experts.  Members can express thoughts about health, wellness and their personal experiences and enjoy conversations with Health Helpers.

Come see what the buzz is about.

Friday, February 3, 2012

The Aha! Moment

What's healthier, a hot dog with all the fixings and a side of cheese fries or a self prepared grilled chicken sandwich on a whole wheat bun with ketchup, lettuce and tomato?  I think we can figure this one out without any help from a nutritionist.  But, what would it take to make you CHOOSE the grilled chicken?  How about a video of how a hot dog is made?  Or maybe a side-by-side of the nutritional values associated with each meal?  Either way, the choice is yours.

I can remember my Aha! moment.  I wasn't much of a salad eater.  If it was green, I figured it had a fungus.  Try something new?  Never!  I thought people who drank water throughout the day were "boring".  I saw them as tree huggers.  Then I met someone who showed me how to incorporate some of the foods I already liked into my diet, and avoid getting bored.  Additionally, he showed me that those same foods have complimentary foods that look and taste similar and could stand a second look.  He made it a point to allow me to go slow with these new foods.  Be conscience about the choices I was making and I would start to see changes in my energy, mood and overall lifestyle.  After a while, I felt in control.  I felt like I was making decisions based on what my body was craving, and my body was craving healthy items.  Drinking down a glass of water helped me to feel rejuvenated!

I guess the point is...reaching our Aha! moment can happen at any time.  Meeting someone that has the knowledge to guide you, feeling unhealthy and wanting a change, a Doctor's advice or just knowing it's time to make better choices, for you.  Whatever gets you there, stick with it.  Take it slow if need be, and remember that making positive healthy choices will benefit you and those around you.