HealthTap AppRx Awards for the Top Health & Medical Apps of 2014

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What It Is:

With over 44,000 mobile health apps on the market, discovering the best ones used to be a daunting (if not impossible) task. Now, thanks to HelathTap’s AppRx, you have a trusted way to find the best health and wellness apps, independently rated and recommended by top U.S. doctors.  No need to scour the web for reviews for individual apps from different sources.  Now you have one place to go to find the best and most useful iOS and Android health and wellness apps: [AppRx] {LINK TO: AppRx user page}.

This year, we’re excited to announce the first ever HealthTap AppRx Awards. Celebrating the best mobile apps for health and wellness, the HealthTap AppRx Award recognizes the health and medical apps most recommended by HealthTap’s network of 64,000+ top U.S. doctors.

How It Works:

Eligibility & Rules:

  • Entry is automatic. All apps classified as “Health & Wellness Apps” in the Apple App and Google Play Stores are qualified to enter the competition.
  • Apps are further classified by HealthTap into one (1) of 30 categories (developers can select additional categories as appropriate).
  • Apps can be entered for multiple award categories, and apps may win multiple awards.  There are no fees to enter apps for consideration.
  • HealthTap will recognize finalists from the top ranking apps in each category based on the total number of doctor reviews and recommendations. Prior “Doctor Recommendations” are included in the final tally.
  • Doctors on HealthTap review apps by searching for them by name, or by selecting apps from a random review queue visible within their HealthTap account.
  • User votes on the HealthTap app listings page increase the frequency and visibility of apps in doctor review queues, improving their chances of getting reviewed.
  • Users can vote for their favorites on HealthTap between 12/01/14 and 12/31/14. There are no fees to vote.

HealthTap AppRx BadgeCriteria for Reviews:

  • HealthTap doctors review the apps based on three criteria:
    • The medical soundness of the app
    • The app’s utility in supporting health or healthy living goals
    • The app’s usability.
  • There are no negative reviews. Apps that do not pass the doctor’s standards simply do not get reviewed.

Selection of Winners:

  • The top 100 apps overall and the top 10 apps in each of the 30 categories that garner the most  doctor recommendations will be declared winners.
  • HealthTap reserves the right to disregard votes it deems, in its sole discretion, to be suspect or invalid (such as user votes submitted by bots or other computer-generated voting applications). There are no fees to vote.
  • Final award winners will be announced on January 14, 2015 and included in HealthTap’s AppRx Annual Report: Top Health & Medical Apps of 2014, published in an exclusive press release and distributed widely to top business and tech publications nationwide.


25 Inspiring Quotes About Gratitude

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Thank YouAmerican philosopher William James once observed that “the deepest principle in human nature is the craving to be appreciated.”

This season of thanks is the perfect time to express gratitude and appreciation for the people who’ve had the greatest positive impact in your life. Take a moment to thank those close to you (the kind of people we often appreciate but don’t always recognize) – like parents, siblings, spouses, partners, and loyal friends.

Did you know gratitude has health benefits, too? It can lower your stress levels, boost your confidence, improve your sense of self, and most importantly, strengthen your relationships with others. Today and everyday, why not make gratitude a habit!

We’ve gathered 21 of our favorite quotes on gratitude. Do you have one to share? Post it on our Facebook page!

  1. “The way to develop the best that is in a person is by appreciation and encouragement.”Charles Schwab
  2. “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.”William Arthur Ward
  3. “Let us be grateful to the people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” Marcel Proust
  4. “Gratitude is a currency that we can mint for ourselves, and spend without fear of bankruptcy.” Fred De Witt Van Amburgh
  5. “Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.”  Epicurus
  6. “Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.”Robert Brault
  7. “When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around.” Willie Nelson
  8. “We should certainly count our blessings, but we should also make our blessings count.”Neal A. Maxwell
  9. “If you want to turn your life around, try thankfulness. It will change your life mightily.”Gerald Good
  10. “You cannot do a kindness too soon because you never know how soon it will be too late.”Ralph Waldo Emerson
  11. “Gratitude also opens your eyes to the limitless potential of the universe, while dissatisfaction closes your eyes to it.” Stephen Richards
  12. Giving thanks with a flower“Gratitude and attitude are not challenges; they are choices.” Robert Braathe
  13. “They both seemed to understand that describing it was beyond their powers, the gratitude that spreads through your body when a burden gets lifted, and the sense of homecoming that follows, when you suddenly remember what it feels like to be yourself.”Tom Perrotta
  14. “Gratitude is more of a compliment to yourself than someone else.” Raheel Farooq
  15. “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day–or to celebrate each special day.” Rasheed Ogunlaru“If you count all your assets, you always show a profit.” Robert Quillen
  16. “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words but to live by them.” John F. Kennedy
  17. “Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.” Eckhart Tolle
  18. “No one who achieves success does so without the help of others. The wise and confident acknowledge this help with gratitude.” Alfred North Whitehead
  19. “If you want to turn your life around, try thankfulness. It will change your life mightily.”Gerald Good
  20. “Gratitude turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…it makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.” Melody Beattie
  21. “At times, our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.”Albert Schweitzer
  22. “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.” Oprah Winfrey
  23. “In ordinary life, we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer
  24. “Let gratitude be the pillow upon which you kneel to say your nightly prayer. And let faith be the bridge you build to overcome evil and welcome good.” Maya Angelou
  25. “If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough.” Meister Eckhart


“Sticks and Stones and Brittle Bones” by Dr. Moshe Lewis, MD, MPH

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Dr._Moshe_Lewis_10072614Sticks and Stones and Brittle Bones

One might find it surprising that many people in “healthy” California are at significant risk for fractures and may not know it. I worked with American Bone Health in July and learned this first hand. Using a web-based tool, I joined 138 other volunteers at 36 Walgreens Stores throughout California. Together we screened 523 older adults. 72% of those people we screened were at moderate or high risk of having a life-changing fracture in the next 10 years. Any broken bone after age 45 that occurs with little impact is a red flag. The main areas for bone fractures include hip, wrist and vertebral (spine) fractures. Don’t let the lack of knowledge prevent you from taking steps to reduce your risk of bone loss and fractures.

Nutrition should include a balanced diet with adequate, but not excessive protein, calcium and vitamin D intake. Excessive amounts of salt should be avoided. Some calcium-rich foods include: many varieties of milk; yogurt; cheese; ice cream; fish; shellfish such as oysters, sardines, salmon, and shrimp; and vegetables such as broccoli, soybeans, almonds, and calcium-fortified tofu. Your physician may recommend calcium supplements if you are not getting between 1,000 and 1,200 mg in your daily diet. Some vitamin D rich foods include fortified milk; some fortified cereals; and cold saltwater fish such as salmon, halibut, herring, tuna, oysters and shrimp.

Women and men older than age 35 can slow bone loss with regular weight-bearing exercise. Walking, hiking, stair climbing, tennis and dancing are good exercises to prevent bone loss. Low impact exercises are better if you have osteoporosis. If you have heart problems, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, or are over 40 years old, check with your health care provider before starting an exercise routine. If you have any chest pain or discomfort, stop exercising and contact your doctor.

Smoking Cessation
Smoking can increase the risk for bone loss and fractures. Smokers are encouraged to stop smoking as soon as possible.

Reducing Alcohol Intake
More than 3 alcoholic drinks a day can affect vitamin D metabolism, proper nutrition and can increase the risk for falls.

There are several medications that are approved by the FDA to prevent and/or treat osteoporosis. It is important to take your medications as ordered by your doctor.

Diagnostic Testing
A bone mineral density (BMD) tests measures bone density in various parts of the body and can help determine the risk of fractures. For people who are at higher risk than expected, doctors may use other laboratory tests to determine a cause for bone loss. It is important to complete any blood work that your doctor recommends.

Reduce Risks For Falls
Keep all rooms free from clutter, especially on the floors. Keep surfaces smooth, but not slippery. Wear supportive,
low-heeled shoes. Do not walk around in socks or slippers. Make sure that all carpets have skidproof backings or are tacked to the floor, especially on the stairs. Use a rubber bath mat in the shower. Install grab bars in the bathroom. If unstable on your feet, use a shower chair. Install night lights and keep a flashlight with fresh batteries beside the bed. Have light switches located when you enter the rooms or when you use voice activated lights. Have a portable phone or cell phone that you can carry with you. Reorganize items to minimize difficult reaching. If unstable on your feet, use a walker or cane. Have vision and hearing checked. Alcohol can slow reflexes and increase the chance of falls. Have your family physician review medications that may cause dizziness.

For more information on bone health and fracture prevention, check out the resources from American Bone Health at

Moshe Lewis MD, MPH
Chief, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehab,
California Pacific Medical Center, St. Luke’s Campus

HealthTap for Heroes

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165135051This Veterans Day, HealthTap celebrates the real-life heroes in the military. We thank them for their dedication, loyalty, sacrifice, and service.

Veterans and military families often face unique challenges—from addressing health issues from afar to managing complex injuries, to enduring frequent relocations that impact continuity of care and coping with stress and anxiety.

Below are 5 of the most common questions asked by veterans on HealthTap:

1641111051. What resources are available for disabled veterans?

Here are some that may help:

  • http://www.VA.Gov (can apply to VA and receive care)
  • Disabled american veterans
  • Veterans of foreign wars
  • http://www.Halfofus.Com/veterans
  • http://usmilitary.About.Com/od/benefits/a/vetbenefits.Htm

Good luck! - Dr. Evan Altman

2. Are there benefits for diabetic veterans?

Any and all including eye, feet care, meds, supplies, glucosometers, insulin, and all supplemental care. (My dad is a veteran. He gets this directly from the locl VA clinic.) - Dr. Luis Villaplana

If your diabetes can be attributed to or tied to your time in service (such as agent orange in particular), then there are significant VA benefits. Check with the counselor at the VA hospital near you or with your veterans organizations like the VFW. - Dr. Richard Bensinger

3. How does post traumatic stress disorder affect war veterans and families?

PTSD can be damaging for veteran and family. Combat capacity can be reduced, endurance reduced as soldier is not at perfect health before engaging action. Mind not as sharp though already in hyper-arousal state. Wrongful decision-making hurt split second decision in life and death matter. Family harmony disturbed by extreme tension of untreated ptsd which aggravates with time. - Dr. Truc Dao

4. Who can I talk to about getting help as a veteran with PTSD?

There is a national network of therapists who treat vets for free and confidentially. To find one in your area, go to - Dr. Christine Musello

If there is a “vet center” in your community -it is a great place to start. The department of veterans affairs has a massive structure to provide services. Start with AM Vets, DAV, VA rep or other service officers to assist you with completing an application for services. You will need to have your condition “service -connected” to receive treatment. Even a 0% rating will get you services for life for that particular condition. I would start working on your application ASAP. - Dr. Heidi Fowler

5. Will the VA provide guide dogs for blinded veterans?

_PetDogEach veteran’s case is reviewed and evaluated by a prescribing clinician for the following:

  • ability and means, including family or caregiver, to care for the dog currently and in the future
  • goals that are to accomplished through the use of the dog
  • goals that are to be accomplished through other assistive technology or therapy the veteran will be informed of an approval or disapproval

Answer courtesy of Dr. Guy Da Silva

To all our military families and veterans, our heartfelt thanks for your sacrifice and service. Now, it’s out turn to serve you with trusted, personalized health information, whenever you need it most. Our HealthTap doctors are here to support you—our heroes—today and always!

Ask our doctors any health question, anytime, anywhere.


Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge Presents on “Getting the Flu Shot”

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HealthTap’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge discusses the importance of getting the flu shot.