Foodsampler: context as part of foodintake registration
While the use of mobile self-reporting tools becomes more popular in registering food intake, scientific evidence of these tools is still scarce, they are known with under reporting and do not stimulate adherence. Contextual factors, which are known to influence food behaviour, are rarely included in these tools. Context is defined as the complete situation or setting in which or with whom eating takes place, including an individuals’ psyche and emotions, habits and experiences. How information about context can be collected, and the relevance of collecting contextual aspects is still unknown. The aim of this study is to identify contextual aspects that are considered important and relevant by clients with overweight, regarding their nutritional intake and self-reporting.
A framework has been designed from existing literature and semi-structured interviews have been conducted among different target groups suffering from overweight: (n=4) clients that underwent bariatric surgery more than two years ago; (n=4) adults that were 65 years or older and (n=3) parents of overweight children. In total, 11 interviews were transcribed and coded. Quotes were analyzed by seven researchers, after which themes were defined and added.
The framework analyses of the interviews resulted in eight themes: 1) social environment, 2) environmental factors, 3) attitudes and beliefs, 4) internal factors, 5) habits, 6) self-control, 7) psychological factors and 8) food literacy. These themes are related to the context and with whom and why one eats, more than what and how much is eaten. It appears that clients feel judged and stigmatized and that they have few positive experiences in reporting food intake; there is a need to be heard by healthcare professionals.
Conclusion and discussion
There seems to be a demand for a better functioning, non-judgmental self-reporting tool that includes context in which clients feel heard. The eleven respondents regard the mentioned themes as important for food intake registration. Current methodologies do not sufficiently incorporate these contexts. The findings of this research will be included in the development of a new self-reporting tool, which will be tested among the target group.
Keywords: dietary treatment, overweight, self-management, e-health, food intake registration