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4 Your Health: Staying on track with fitness trackers

NBC News
A new study looks at how effective fitness trackers are.

Can those popular fitness trackers really help with our exercise, diet and weight loss goals?

Researchers at Virginia Tech report it depends on how they are used. They found some features on the devices were more effective than others. For example, rewards or step reminders did not really enhance motivation. And social interactions, like virtual challenges and rankings, only appealed to those who already exercised.

Experts said users should customize the devices to suit their personal goals.

Tracking patients progress

A separate study suggests there are benefits to using fitness trackers in hospitals.

Researchers from Cedars Sinai in Los Angeles used Fitbits to monitor patients activity after surgery. The more steps patients took in the days after surgery the less time they spent in the hospital.

Data from the activity trackers also helped doctors know if a patient was recovering well.

Ordering up a hangover

An answer to the age-old question, does drinking beer before or after wine, make you feel fine?

Scientists said it doesn’t matter what you drink, you will be hungover if you drink too much of any alcoholic beverage.

Ninety volunteers were assigned to drink large amounts of alcohol in various orders. The participants had similar hangover scores regardless of what they drank first or last.

Women tended to have slightly worse hangovers than men.



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