The dietary intervention study involved 497 online shoppers who received real-time personalised advice, recommending foods lower in saturated fat. The study showed that shoppers who received dietary advice reduced the saturated fat in their shopping baskets by 10%, a positive step towards a healthier heart.
Cardiovascular disease is Australia’s biggest killer, leading to tens of thousands of deaths per year. Researchers believe this innovative, low cost method of influencing dietary patterns has great potential to reduce this toll. Benefits could be especially large as the Internet savvy younger generation ages.
Co-principal Investigator of the study, Dr Rachel Huxley said today, “Online food shopping offers a unique opportunity to change food purchasing habits. Almost 150,000 Australians already purchase at least some of their groceries online every year and that number is growing. This approach offers Australians a low cost, long-term, non-drug strategy for reducing their fat intake and their cholesterol levels.”
Researchers obtained a list of commonly purchased food items that contained up to 92% saturated fat and identified a suitable low fat alternate for each. As consumers selected their product, they were presented with the opportunity to either retain the product or swap it for the alternate lower in saturated fat. A simple side-by-side, on screen display of the original item and the suggested alternate was used.
The average age of the participants was 40, each shopping for an average of about three people. The study also showed that shoppers maintained good dietary practices over consecutive shopping events. Benefits appeared greater among people with higher body mass index and greater age who may have most to gain. Lower fat dairy products were the items most frequently added to the shopping after dietary advice was provided.
Co-principal Investigator Dr Bruce Neal noted, “It is easy to imagine an adaptation of the system that could provide advice about salt intake or advice to consumers with specific disease states such as diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol.”
New technologies united with this simple approach provides opportunities for wider development. “With automated personally tailored computer advice now of proven benefit in a commercial setting, the challenge will be to see the results translated into practice. This will require imaginative approaches developed in collaboration with public health advocacy groups, regulatory bodies and the food retail industry,” he added.
This project was published today in the open-access journal PLoS Clinical Trials from the Public Library of Science and funded by The National Heart Foundation of Australia and the Future Forum.
Top Ten Tips for a healthier shopping basket- Coose soft margarines instead of butter
Discovery points to a new path toward a universal flu vaccine
03.07.2015 | Rockefeller University
"CCS Telehealth Ostsachsen", Germany's largest telemedicine project, goes online in Dresden
02.07.2015 | Universitätsklinikum Carl Gustav Carus Dresden
Wind turbines could be installed under some of the biggest bridges on the road network to produce electricity. So it is confirmed by calculations carried out by a European researchers team, that have taken a viaduct in the Canary Islands as a reference. This concept could be applied in heavily built-up territories or natural areas with new constructions limitations.
The Juncal Viaduct, in Gran Canaria, has served as a reference for Spanish and British researchers to verify that the wind blowing between the pillars on this...
New technique combines electron microscopy and synchrotron X-rays to track chemical reactions under real operating conditions
A new technique pioneered at the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory reveals atomic-scale changes during catalytic reactions in real...
Think of an object made of iron: An I-beam, a car frame, a nail. Now imagine that half of the iron in that object owes its existence to bacteria living two and a half billion years ago.
Think of an object made of iron: An I-beam, a car frame, a nail. Now imagine that half of the iron in that object owes its existence to bacteria living two and...
A team of scientists including PhD student Friedrich Schuler from the Laboratory of MEMS Applications at the Department of Microsystems Engineering (IMTEK) of...
The three-year clinical trial results of the retinal implant popularly known as the "bionic eye," have proven the long-term efficacy, safety and reliability of...
25.06.2015 | Event News
16.06.2015 | Event News
11.06.2015 | Event News
06.07.2015 | Power and Electrical Engineering
06.07.2015 | Press release
06.07.2015 | Physics and Astronomy