Online tips inspire people to eat healthy: Study

Online tips inspire people to eat healthy: Study

Online tips inspire people to eat healthy: Study

A 12-month-long study by researchers at Henry Ford Hospital, in the US, showed that when given access to an online programme about fruits and vegetables, people increased their daily fruit and vegetable intake by more than two servings.

"People already know the health benefits of fruits and vegetables, but they often don't know how to incorporate them into their diet," said senior author Christine Cole Johnson.
"That's why our study worked. Using online programmes, we were able to offer study participants practical and easy tips to increase their daily fruit and vegetable intake."
As part of the study, the team recruited members of Health Alliance Plan and four other HMOs in Seattle, Denver, Minneapolis and Atlanta, ages 21 to 65, American Journal of Public Health reported.

The participants were divided in to three groups -- a control online programme that provided general information for the participants about improving their fruit and vegetable intake.

A programme that was similar but personalised to the individual's needs and a programme that incorporated the other two components and was also supplemented with motivational interviewing counseling via e-mail.

At the end of the study, researchers found that there was improvement across all study groups, but the most significant changes were with the group that had motivational interviewing and counseling.

"We found that giving participants gentle reminders that refocused them on their goals greatly improved progress," said co-author Gwen Alexander.
"They were being held accountable for their progress, which became a key motivator".

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