What better way to eat right, exercise and improve your well-being than to do them with friends? That’s the idea behind a fun, new mobile app called WellWithMe. The free app lets friends work together to improve their health by sharing challenges, status updates and photos of their good-health achievements. WellWithMe was made possible through support from Aetna (NYSE: AET), a leading global diversified health care benefits company.
“WellWithMe is such a fun, social way to engage friends and family members to get and stay healthy,” said Karen Weinseiss, Aetna International’s senior vice president of International Health Care Management. “All of us are much more likely to stick with good eating habits or daily exercise if we have a buddy to share the experience. We are pleased to have supported the development of WellWithMe as part of our drive to help people live healthier lives.”
WellWithMe lets people invite each other to join them in three healthy activities every day, one from each of its three categories: Move, Eat and Grow. Under Move, the activity might be a simple one, such as “take the stairs instead of the elevator,” or more vigorous, such as “swim for 30 minutes.” In Eat, activities include “eat three different colored fruits” or “have a salad with lunch.” In Grow, suggested activities are “read for 30 minutes” and “make eye contact with five people.” Participants can log on and invite friends through their Facebook accounts. The app keeps a running tally of completed activities and lets participants share photos and achievements.
The idea for WellWithMe began in Berlin on November 3, 2012 when a four-member team of young European and American software developers competed at the Aetna International-sponsored code-a-thon held prior to Health 2.0 Europe, an annual conference on health technology. During the 29-hour competition, the foursome created an impressive prototype mobile app that earned them a €3000 prize. Their next step was to refine the app to make it ready for consumer use. With additional backing from Aetna International and some extra brain power from several developers they met at the contest, the team recently added WellWithMe to the Apple App Store and Google Play. The app is free.“We’re terribly excited to see people all over the world use our app,” said Caleb Oller, leader of the Berlin 6, the team who created the application. “It’s very gratifying to know that our work can help people live healthier lives and have fun in the process. We’re grateful to Aetna for helping us produce a really useful tool.”