Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Healthier hearts for online shoppers

22.09.2006
New research has seen online grocery shoppers improve their diets at the click of a button. The world’s first study of Internet shopping was conducted by researchers from The George Institute for International Health. The trial showed that offering simple dietary advice to online consumers can lead to significantly healthier food choices.

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
- Ten cooking, use vegetable oils (olive and canola oils)
- Avoid creamy sauces, instead choose and vegetable based sauces
- Buy meats labelled "lean" or "extra lean"
- Select chicken and turkey over high-fat processed meats (sausages and salami)
- Opt for skim/low-fat milk
- Try fat-free or low-fat yogurt
- Choose calcium-enriched soy products such as soy milk and soy yogurt
- Substitute low-fat cheese for full-fat cheese
- When buying snacks (e.g. potato crisps, cakes, chocolate) and processed foods (e.g. pastries, pies, pizza and hamburgers) look for the reduced fat alternatives available.

Emma Orpilla | alfa
Further information:
http://www.thegeorgeinstitute.org
http://www.plosclinicaltrials.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Discovery points to a new path toward a universal flu vaccine
03.07.2015 | Rockefeller University

nachricht "CCS Telehealth Ostsachsen", Germany's largest telemedicine project, goes online in Dresden
02.07.2015 | Universitätsklinikum Carl Gustav Carus Dresden

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Viaducts with wind turbines, the new renewable energy source

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...

Im Focus: X-rays and electrons join forces to map catalytic reactions in real-time

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...

Im Focus: Iron: A biological element?

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...

Im Focus: Thousands of Droplets for Diagnostics

Researchers develop new method enabling DNA molecules to be counted in just 30 minutes

A team of scientists including PhD student Friedrich Schuler from the Laboratory of MEMS Applications at the Department of Microsystems Engineering (IMTEK) of...

Im Focus: Bionic eye clinical trial results show long-term safety, efficacy vision-restoring implant

Patients using Argus II experienced significant improvement in visual function and quality of life

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...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

World Conference on Regenerative Medicine in Leipzig: Last chance to submit abstracts until 2 July

25.06.2015 | Event News

World Conference on Regenerative Medicine: Abstract Submission has been extended to 24 June

16.06.2015 | Event News

MUSE hosting Europe’s largest science communication conference

11.06.2015 | Event News

 
Latest News

Aluminum Clusters Shut Down Molecular Fuel Factory

06.07.2015 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Veja Mate Offshore orders 67 wind turbines including record long-term service

06.07.2015 | Press release

The quantum middle man

06.07.2015 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>