Heart rate variability and health trackers - Forums at Psych Central



advertisement
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 04-20-2019, 01:31 PM #1
Lilfae's Avatar
Lilfae Lilfae is offline
Member
 
Member Since: May 2018
Location: Norway
Posts: 35
Lilfae Lilfae is offline
Member
Lilfae's Avatar
Lilfae has no updates.
 
Member Since: May 2018
Location: Norway
Posts: 35

1 yr Member
39 hugs
given
Default Heart rate variability and health trackers

Hi! I Wonder if anyone here have tried out health trackers, or measuring your heart rate variability (HRV). After I read about HRV and sleep in The Body Keeps the Score, by Bessel van der Kolk, I wanted to check these things out on myself, since low HRV can have serious impacts on your body.

I started using a Fitbit tracker to track my heart rate and my sleep in december or so, and just last week I discovered Welltory, an app that measures your HRV on your phone. My scores aren't good… But I haven't compared my results to anyone elses, and don't know how reliable they are (although both claim to be very reliable), so I wondered if anyone else use them, and would be willing to share their scores? Maybe discussing things that help you, what makes you worse, patterns etc.

Thanks
Lilfae is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
"Thanks for this!" says:

advertisement
Old 04-28-2019, 12:30 AM #2
phoenix7's Avatar
phoenix7 phoenix7 is offline
Wise Elder
 
Member Since: Oct 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 8,135
phoenix7 phoenix7 is offline
Wise Elder
phoenix7's Avatar
phoenix7 is tired of trying
 
Member Since: Oct 2008
Location: Australia
Posts: 8,135 (SuperPoster!)

10 yr Member
1,275 hugs
given
PC PoohBah!
Default Re: Heart rate variability and health trackers

I use my fitnesspal the free version for general stuff for my diet - and I use my watch for heart rate
__________________
Its not how many times you fall down that counts
its how many times you get back up!
Heart rate variability and health trackers
(Thanks to fenrir for my Picture )

When you have come to the edge of all light that you know and are about to drop off into the darkness of the unknown,
Faith is knowing One of two things will happen: There will be something solid to stand on or you will be taught to fly.
by Patrick Overton, author and poet
phoenix7 is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 04-28-2019, 06:50 PM #3
Emily Fox Seaton's Avatar
Emily Fox Seaton Emily Fox Seaton is offline
Poohbah
 
Member Since: Dec 2016
Location: Senegal
Posts: 1,315
Emily Fox Seaton Emily Fox Seaton is offline
Poohbah
Emily Fox Seaton's Avatar
Emily Fox Seaton has no updates.
 
Member Since: Dec 2016
Location: Senegal
Posts: 1,315

2 yr Member
282 hugs
given
Default Re: Heart rate variability and health trackers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilfae View Post
I started using a Fitbit tracker to track my heart rate and my sleep in december or so, and just last week I discovered Welltory, an app that measures your HRV on your phone. My scores aren't good… But I haven't compared my results to anyone elses, and don't know how reliable they are (although both claim to be very reliable), so I wondered if anyone else use them, and would be willing to share their scores? Maybe discussing things that help you, what makes you worse, patterns etc.
I don't have a fitness tracker but for a while now I have had a hobby of watching my heart rate. It started after a bout of palpitations caused by a medication.

But what I discovered is that I can change my heart rate depending on many things but most significantly eating.

Reducing my calories for a substantial period of time can drop my heart rate over 10 pts. And it doesn't really recover if I keep calories low. But eating a lot of calories for an extended period of time can increase it.

So sounds to me like it is measuring how low the heart rate goes vrs high and you have to know a ton of things can influence that.
Emily Fox Seaton is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 04-29-2019, 02:40 PM #4
Lilfae's Avatar
Lilfae Lilfae is offline
Member
 
Member Since: May 2018
Location: Norway
Posts: 35
Lilfae Lilfae is offline
Member
Lilfae's Avatar
Lilfae has no updates.
 
Member Since: May 2018
Location: Norway
Posts: 35

1 yr Member
39 hugs
given
Default Re: Heart rate variability and health trackers

Thanks for your replies, both of you!
Lilfae is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
Old 05-01-2019, 10:51 AM #5
guilloche guilloche is offline
Magnate
 
Member Since: Jun 2014
Location: US
Posts: 2,371
guilloche guilloche is offline
Magnate
guilloche has no updates.
 
Member Since: Jun 2014
Location: US
Posts: 2,371

3 yr Member
1,731 hugs
given
PC PoohBah!
Default Re: Heart rate variability and health trackers

I just started looking at HRV recently too, but haven't yet started tracking it. I had been reading about the Whoop device (you have to pay a monthly subscription, I was thinking of just getting the minimum 6 months to try out) and the Biostrap, that someone I know is testing and recommended.

I also looked at the Emfit online - and it looks awesome. You put it under your mattress, and it tracks your sleep, plus HRV and some other things I think.

I really appreciate the heads up on Welltory, I'm looking at them now! Very cool, looks like it might be an easier way to get started.

I guess my question would be - what do you do with the measurements? If they just make me stressed (because they're bad!) - that won't be helpful.

I recently trying the "Snore Labs" app - which records you if you snore. I didn't think I snored, but am trying to improve my sleep - and it was so awful! I mean, the app is fantastic, but the recordings of me snoring at night - literally wanted to make me cry, and now I'm struggling to sleep! (On the positive note, it's helping me feel more motivated to clean up my diet and lose weight!)

I don't know... but Welltory looks really interesting, and it's nice that you don't need to buy/wear any extra gear!
guilloche is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
Old 05-01-2019, 11:16 AM #6
guilloche guilloche is offline
Magnate
 
Member Since: Jun 2014
Location: US
Posts: 2,371
guilloche guilloche is offline
Magnate
guilloche has no updates.
 
Member Since: Jun 2014
Location: US
Posts: 2,371

3 yr Member
1,731 hugs
given
PC PoohBah!
Default Re: Heart rate variability and health trackers

Hey! I actually just downloaded the free version of Welltory (thanks again for mentioning it) and tried a reading.

Very cool! Most of my parameters look good, which is surprising (I've been feeling a little sick the last few days). Though there's one that's low (parasympathetic nervous system, which could indicate chronic stress - ha! That totally tracks!)

I'm guessing that it's more accurate after you do it for several days, so that it can learn your baseline. But seeing so much that looked fairly good is actually helping me right now - I've been really anxious about the sick feelings, and this is helping relieve some of that.

Thanks!
guilloche is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
Old 05-06-2019, 02:55 PM #7
Lilfae's Avatar
Lilfae Lilfae is offline
Member
 
Member Since: May 2018
Location: Norway
Posts: 35
Lilfae Lilfae is offline
Member
Lilfae's Avatar
Lilfae has no updates.
 
Member Since: May 2018
Location: Norway
Posts: 35

1 yr Member
39 hugs
given
Default Re: Heart rate variability and health trackers

Quote:
Originally Posted by guilloche View Post
Hey! I actually just downloaded the free version of Welltory (thanks again for mentioning it) and tried a reading.

Very cool! Most of my parameters look good, which is surprising (I've been feeling a little sick the last few days). Though there's one that's low (parasympathetic nervous system, which could indicate chronic stress - ha! That totally tracks!)

I'm guessing that it's more accurate after you do it for several days, so that it can learn your baseline. But seeing so much that looked fairly good is actually helping me right now - I've been really anxious about the sick feelings, and this is helping relieve some of that.

Thanks!
That's great! Of course, if it would only make you more stressed it wouldn't be any point. I'm trying to find out about what makes me better and what makes me worse. It has also motivated me to get better sleeping habits. And you know, just focusing on these somatic health parameters feels so much easier to handle than the psychological issues. Something that can actually be measured, and that I can take to the doctor and say, hey, this is how my body functions, can we do something about it? It also makes it a little bit easier to handle the relation to people around me: Research shows that trauma/anxiety/depression does something with your brain that disrupts the balance of the autonomic nervous system. It's not just me being weak, and it's not something I can just snap out of. It's real, and it shows so clearly why I'm so tired all the time. For others, their sypathetic nervous system works hard when they work out etc, and afterwards their parasympathetic nervous system makes them relax and regenerate. My sympathetic nervous system is working hard _all the time_, and my repressed parasympathetic nervous system has a hard time gathering strenght for my body. I feel like this makes me a bit more confident.
Lilfae is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 05-07-2019, 09:04 PM #8
guilloche guilloche is offline
Magnate
 
Member Since: Jun 2014
Location: US
Posts: 2,371
guilloche guilloche is offline
Magnate
guilloche has no updates.
 
Member Since: Jun 2014
Location: US
Posts: 2,371

3 yr Member
1,731 hugs
given
PC PoohBah!
Default Re: Heart rate variability and health trackers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lilfae View Post
It's not just me being weak, and it's not something I can just snap out of. It's real, and it shows so clearly why I'm so tired all the time. For others, their sypathetic nervous system works hard when they work out etc, and afterwards their parasympathetic nervous system makes them relax and regenerate. My sympathetic nervous system is working hard _all the time_, and my repressed parasympathetic nervous system has a hard time gathering strenght for my body. I feel like this makes me a bit more confident.
Hi Lilfae -

Thanks so much for posting all this! It makes sense, and I hadn't really thought too much about what that means... but (at least according to Welltory), my parasympathetic immune system seems to be struggling too, no wonder my stress scores are almost always high and I'm tired almost all the time.

It's interesting. Did you find anything online that helped you understand the numbers? (I tried googling, but didn't find much that seemed helpful.)

Do you have the paid version, and is it worth it? I read their stuff about accuracy (how they tested versus a heart rate monitor to establish accuracy) - but, I'm also doing neurofeedback right now with a really smart brain guy, and he sort of dismissed anything that uses the camera phone to get HRV readings as not very accurate. Although, I think he's also more in favor of "don't take the readings as absolute values, establish a baseline and watch for changes".

I jotted down ~17 readings worth of numbers before my trial expired (I don't think I can get to the specifics anymore without paying), if you're curious and want something to compare too... I also did blood pressure for several at the end (geeked out a bit!)

My MxDMn score (which apparently refers to the parasympathetic nervous system, it's the one that kept telling me that I might be under chronic stress) was marked as *yellow* in 16/17 trials... with the lowest score being 0.08 (yikes) and the highest (the one that was in the normal range) at 0.27.

My "Total Power" was also really bad across the board - like 10/17 readings were marked as "red" which is kind of scary, then 6/17 were yellow, with just one normal! I wish I understood this better! (Obviously, the component waves that make up total power were all on the low side too - but none red, just lots of yellow.)

Oh gosh, my lowest "total power" score was 416 (the range is supposed to be 3000-17000) - yikes.

Anything you've found that helps your sleep? I recently tried the "Snore Labs" app and found, to my horror, I snore - which I think is making my sleep worse. I'm trying to do better with sleep and, after seeing the Welltory info, I think I need to work harder on fitting meditation in to my day (my stress scores were pretty high across the board too). And trying to lose some weight, to help with the snoring and thus the sleep.

It's super cool though to be able to see! Thanks again for bringing it up!!!
guilloche is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
Hugs from:
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 05-08-2019, 01:22 PM #9
Lilfae's Avatar
Lilfae Lilfae is offline
Member
 
Member Since: May 2018
Location: Norway
Posts: 35
Lilfae Lilfae is offline
Member
Lilfae's Avatar
Lilfae has no updates.
 
Member Since: May 2018
Location: Norway
Posts: 35

1 yr Member
39 hugs
given
Default Re: Heart rate variability and health trackers

So cool that you find it interesting! No one I've mentioned it to has seemed to know about it. About the accuracy, Welltory claims that it is quite accurate, but that measuring with a camera is very sensitive to movements, so that you can get false results if you move too much. What I'm thinking - and what Welltory says as well - is that it's more than good enough to assess your own health, and to look at what can help you get better, either what you're aiming for is athletics or general health. And if your readings give reason to worry, you can take it to your doctor, who can help understand the different readings better, and, if needed, refer you to more accurate medical check-ups. So I would agree with your friend, I guess.

I have the paid version, and feel it's well worth it for me personally. I use it to help myself get more aware of my body and my mood, and to start respecting my body and care about myself. I've been so self distructive for about as long as I can remember, and just haven't cared at all about my health and safety. So an investment in my physical and mental health, basically. In the paid version you keep having access to your results, and you can set up all kinds of different charts, so you can see how for instance your energy level relates to your stress levels. As well as how it varies over time. You can also connect it to other apps or health trackers, to see how your sleep or number of steps a day affects you. I feel like my fitbit makes welltory more useful, and that welltory makes my fitbit more useful. Geees, you'd think I'm advertising or something, lol, but it really interests me, and I find it so helpful.


I don't know much about all those different things that are measured, though, or what the numbers mean, so I just go by the green/yellow/red and the recommendations. I've googled it a bit, but I have trouble remembering what is what, lol. But I love reading about the brain! :-)

I'll get back to sharing my results later :-)
Lilfae is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
"Thanks for this!" says:
Old 05-09-2019, 09:05 PM #10
guilloche guilloche is offline
Magnate
 
Member Since: Jun 2014
Location: US
Posts: 2,371
guilloche guilloche is offline
Magnate
guilloche has no updates.
 
Member Since: Jun 2014
Location: US
Posts: 2,371

3 yr Member
1,731 hugs
given
PC PoohBah!
Default Re: Heart rate variability and health trackers

That's super cool that you can use it with your fitbit! And everything you're saying makes total sense... you may have convinced me, lol

I still have the free version (for now) but noticed that yesterday, it was unable to get a good reading. I tried about 3 times in the afternoon (one after the other) and just couldn't seem to get it to work (I got a lot of "Signal stabilizing" messages) - and then again ~3 times at night.

Have you ever seen that happen? Before that, it was working great - I wasn't really having any problems as long as I held still. I'm not sure what happened, I even tried taking the case off of my phone. No luck

Have you found anything interesting that helps/hurts your numbers? Have you experimented? I was curious yesterday because I was SOOOOOO STRESSED (like feeling like my head was going to explore) during the day, and then I went and worked out (and hit the sauna) and wanted to see how it affected me

And that's a neat idea about bringing it to the doctor!

Thanks!
guilloche is offline   Reply With QuoteReply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:27 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® — Copyright © 2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.



 

advertisement

Psych Central Forums

Psych Central is the leading mental health website, overseen by mental health professionals since 1995.

 

Helplines and Lifelines

The material on this site is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment provided by a qualified health care provider. .

Always consult your doctor or mental health professional before trying anything you read here.
Please read the full disclaimer.