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So you’ve got your brand-new Fitbit, and you want to know just what it can do, or perhaps you are considering getting one and want to see if you’re getting your money’s worth. That’s why you’re here. To find out if your Fitbit can monitor your blood pressure.
Can Your Fitbit Monitor Your Blood Pressure?
Unfortunately, no. As of 2019, there has yet to be a Fitbit developed that can monitor your blood pressure. Unusually so, as there are many cheaper fitness trackers out there that can track blood pressure.
In fact, it used to be possible. According to some users online, back in the day, the Fitbit app did actually have the ability to measure your blood pressure. Due to it not being used very much, or possibly for some other technical reason, Fitbit has seen fit to remove this feature.
So you’re out of luck with regards to blood pressure and Fitbits. There are, however, plenty of very affordable fitness watches on the market that can track your blood pressure. Charmcare H2, Omron Healthcare Project Zero, and the iHealth BP7 are a few examples of devices that do this.
So if you’re determined to find a Fitbit alternative that can monitor blood pressure, then check out the list below.
Best Fitbit For Blood Pressure
The Fitbit Charge 3 Fitness Activity Tracker is a great alternative. It comes with the aforementioned blood pressure monitoring, as well as a whole host of other features. It has full sleep tracking capability and generates a report for you each morning on your night’s rest.
It has a crisp and clean touchscreen, with excellent, bright image quality. It is also waterproof, so you can wear it swimming, or in the rain, and not worry about it getting damaged. It also monitors your heart rate. Not only that, but it notifies you when your heart rate goes too high, allowing you to keep constant monitoring over your health.
Additionally, it has full message notification integration. You can sync it up with all your social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.) as well as your SMS and call notifications.
So you’ll never miss an important message. It has an option that allows you to buzz your mobile phone, so if you’ve lost it somewhere under a pile of clothes, or forgotten it in your jeans pocket, you can find it in a heartbeat.
It also has a built-in timer and stopwatch, adding yet another excellent quality of life feature to the watch. It takes around two hours to charge the device fully, and it can last between three and seven days, depending on how heavily you use it. Keep in mind the watch is only compatible with smartphones that run Android 4.4 and above, iOS 8.0 and above, and Bluetooth 4.0 and above.
It’s clearly an essential requirement for some of their potential customers, and it’s a large share of the market that they’re missing out on. Perhaps the reason for this is because of the questionable accuracy of fitness tracker blood pressure monitoring, although the accuracy of all stats tracked by these watches can realistically be questioned.
Fitbit Blood Pressure Accuracy
So exactly how accurate is the blood pressure monitoring features of fitness trackers? Well, some monitors may be reasonably accurate, provided you use them exactly as directed. Although, this can vary from model to model.
The main issue with accuracy comes from the fact that fitness trackers measure your blood pressure from the wrist. This means that in order for you to get an absolutely accurate reading, your wrist and arm need to be resting at heart level.
Even at that, the results are still less accurate than those taken at the traditional spot of your upper arm. This is due to the fact that the arteries in your wrist are much narrower than those in your upper arm, and they are closer to the surface of your skin.
The American Heart Association, as a general rule of thumb, recommends that you use a home blood pressure monitor that gets its readings from your upper arm, as opposed to your wrist or finger. An exception can be made, however, in the event that someone has a very large arm or finds upper arm blood pressure measurements painful.
If you are serious about monitoring your blood pressure from home, then you are better off getting an upper arm, dedicated blood pressure monitor, instead of a multi-featured fitness watch. So, unfortunately, there is yet to be an official Fitbit that can allow you to measure your blood pressure.
Apparently, this used to be an option back in the day, but the techies over at Fitbit decided to remove the function for whatever reason. Meaning no, you can’t measure your blood pressure with Fitbit. You can, however, measure your blood pressure with some other, non-Fitbit branded fitness trackers.
The likes of the Charmcare H2, the Omron Healthcare Project Zero, and the iHealth BP7 are all great options available to you if you are willing to buy a device strictly for measuring blood pressure. Out of all the fitness trackers that can measure blood pressure; however, one of the best choices may be the FITBIT Health and Fitness smartwatch.
It comes with an absolute myriad of features, including heart rate monitoring, to coincide with the blood pressure monitoring. It is also incredibly affordable, retailing for around $50 dollars on amazon. The accuracy of wrist-based blood pressure monitors does need to be called into question, though.
Your arm and wrist need to be kept at heart level to get an accurate reading, and even then, it still won’t be as precise as an upper arm reading. This is due to the depth, and size, of the arteries in the wrist.
So if monitoring your blood pressure is a serious issue for you, and a real health concern, then you are better off going with a traditional blood pressure monitor over a fitness tracker that has the feature as a footnote.