Getting a handle on symptoms and factors can be tricky at first. Let's begin by understanding what symptoms are. Symptoms describe what you feel in the most basic way. For example
- "headache" is a symptom you would want to track
- "anxiety" is a symptom you would want to track
- "chills" and "sweats" are symptoms you would want to track
Factors are things we do or experience that affect our symptoms. They can be anything -
- taking 5mg of prednisone (5 mg prednisone)
- going to a hot yoga class (hot yoga)
- sticking to a gluten free diet all day (gluten free)
Don't try to combine factors and symptoms. For example, don't try to track "headache with diet soda" and "headache without diet soda." Instead, track a symptom called "headache" and a factor called "diet soda." On those days you have a headache, record the symptom. On those days you drink a diet soda, factor it in. Bring the two together in general graphs, accessed by rotating your device to landscape.
NOTE: While you could use factors to track steps walked, food eaten, or medications taken, there are other products and apps that do a better job of collecting these data points. Let FitBit be the tool that measures your steps. Let Symple be the place where you record "10K steps" when you've achieved that goal.
Hat tip to Genevieve, who is the inspiration for this blog post.