Welcome to the Feedback Solutions for Obesity blog. I’m a PhD student at Simon Fraser University studying obesity and complexity in the Chronic Disease Systems Modeling Laboratory. My current research explores what feedback is and how it can be used to change the growing incidence of obesity. Through this blog I hope to generate discussion on how we use feedback for personal behaviour change as well as the role feedback plays in other aspects of the obesity system.
Through my initial series of blog posts, I’ll take an in depth look at the potential feedback role of smart phone applications that are marketed at changing behaviours associated with obesity.
A quick search through the iTunes app store reveals a long list of apps to help you count calories, track your weight, log your physical activity, map your runs, make or break habits, or serve as your personal trainer. But sorting out which of these apps provides the best solution for an individual trying to adopt healthy habits can be confusing and frustrating. The reviews provided by other app users are not always helpful and online reviews often offer too little information to make an informed decision about which app will meet meet one’s need.
Based on usability recommendations and app functionality, I’ll attempt to provide a comprehensive review of the different categories of apps to determine which ones will be the most useful. Please stay tuned to first learn about a study that examined iPhone apps developed to track blood glucose levels in diabetic patients.