Promoting Healthy Eating Habits for College Students Through Creating Dietary Diaries via a Smartphone App and Social Media Interaction: Online Survey Study.

JMIR MHealth and UHealth
Masako Watanabe-ItoYoko Shimizu


Youth in developed countries face the contradictory health problems of obesity and an excessive desire for weight loss. Developing a better health attitude for college students is essential as this period of life establishes future lifestyle and habits. Online interaction on social media can help to improve eating habits by creating dietary diaries through a smartphone app; however, the effects of such interactions for college students have not been examined to date. The aim of this study was to evaluate the potential effectiveness of social media interactions with the use of dietary diaries on a smartphone app to motivate college students in raising self-awareness of their eating habits. Forty-two college students in the greater Tokyo area of Japan participated in the study by creating dietary diaries online through a smartphone app and then followed/interacted with each other using social media for 7 consecutive days in September to November 2017. Online surveys were administered at baseline, immediately after creating the dietary diaries, and at 1-month follow up. Participants rated their degree of interest and self-evaluation of eating habits using 7-point scales, and answered multiple choice questions related to their thou...Continue Reading


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