New York (PRWEB) October 02, 2013
A group of breast cancer survivors who participated in a recent MealLogger case study found that the social food journal provided the peer support they were seeking to help achieve a healthy lifestyle post –treatment, according to Wellness Foundry, creators of MealLogger. Six women were recruited from a large, general Facebook support group for breast cancer survivors to determine how the mobile app’s targeted and personal groups feature may encourage healthy behaviors.
“MealLogger’s Groups feature is a behavior game changer,” said Anna Aistrich, MPH, a health educator consultant for Wellness Foundry and a breast cancer survivor who moderated the case study group. “By offering a simple way to create intimate virtual peer groups, MealLogger can really turn people’s lives around and help them get them back on track. Receiving emotional and social support means so much, no matter whether one is struggling with a chronic disease, such as breast cancer or diabetes, or trying to achieve or maintain a healthy weight.”
According to research gathered by the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, women who undergo treatment for breast cancer often gain weight, especially during chemotherapy. Once treatment concludes, many of these women aim to get back to their former physical condition, lose the weight they gained and/or reform their diet with a particular emphasis on cancer (relapse) prevention. In addition to the challenges weight loss efforts pose for anyone, those recovering from breast cancer can also have physical and emotional traumas to overcome.
“Positive interactions are the basis of the motivation that the group members in this case study found so necessary and helpful in achieving lifestyle changes,” added Aistrich. “Mutual support from others experiencing similar challenges helps empower individuals to get their life back by eating healthy, living healthy.”
With MealLogger, the women were able to track their eating habits by uploading pictures of meals via their mobile phone to share with the group. In turn, they received positive reinforcement and suggestions for healthier alternatives and meal ideas, as well as encouragement to help them stay on track.
“MealLogger is truly a great opportunity to understand your eating habits when you see the pictures of your meals with your own eyes,” Petra Anttila a breast cancer survivor who participated in the case study. “It's a motivating way to eat well and ‘toe the line’ with your eating. It has also been a great opportunity to get comments and suggestions on my meals. Overall, MealLogger is a really fun, easy and beneficial photo food journal app.”
Benefits of MealLogger Groups
Participants of the MealLogger Groups case study cited the following benefits:
•Inspiration/motivation: new meal ideas or tips; peer pressure and/or support to make healthy choices; encouragement and positive feedback from the moderator and peers; knowing that they were “all in the same boat” with respect to their breast cancer recovery
•Visual element: being able to see and evaluate what they eat; ease of comparing meals with others
•Mindfulness: being more aware of food choices as a result of photographing and sharing them; realizing how often one “eat[s] without thinking”
•Better meal rhythm: process of photographing and logging meals helped cut down on snacking and encouraged more regular meals; easy to recall when last meal was eaten and when to plan to eat next
Individuals may use MealLogger to track meals, with or without added nutrition data, as well as exercise sessions, weight, steps, sleep, and more. MealLogger also syncs with Facebook and popular fitness apps like Fitbit or Runkeeper. If you opt to work with a healthcare professional, MealLogger will connect you directly with him/her over your mobile device. Download MealLogger for free via the App store or Google play. For more information, visit http://www.MealLogger.com or follow on Twitter.
MealLogger is a photo food journal and wellness tool created by the Wellness Foundry that allows people to connect with and get guidance from nutrition/medical professionals as well as receive peer social support. Accessible via mobile device or online, MealLogger allows users to track meals, with or without added nutrition data, as well as exercise sessions, weight, steps, sleep, and more. MealLogger also syncs with Facebook and popular fitness apps like Fitbit or Runkeeper. Users can join or form their own private or public groups, where they can comment on and "like" each other's meals, share ideas and motivate one another to stay on track.