Update on the SmartAPPetite Project

SmartAPPetite is a collaborative project of the Human Environments Analysis Lab that promotes, smarter, healthier eating and strengthens the local food system in Ontario, Canada by using smartphone technology to share and expand local food knowledge.

Users of the SmartAPPetite ‘app’ regularly receive food and health-related tips that are personalized to their own dietary goals, schedules, and geographic locations. The tips – which are carefully researched and approved by a team of Registered Dietitians – offer information about seasonal availability, nutrition, safe food handling, and other healthy habits, as well as related recipes and local food vendors. Users can also choose to have location-based messages appear on their smartphone when they come near a local farmers’ market or other pre-approved local vendor.  Users control how many tips they receive per day, and what time of day they appear.

To date, over 1000 messages have been written by message writers and approved by a team of Registered Dietitians for the app. Additionally, SmartAPPetite has recruited and had a total of 1114 students from across Southwestern Ontario use the app so far. Due to the circumstances caused by COVID-19, and changes to the school system, we are currently seeking other avenues of recruiting participants and are awaiting ethics approval for our proposed changes. Current plans involve expanding into the Waterloo region, and seeking recruitment via online means such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, while also seeking to recruit teens via email for numerous schools in the Waterloo region.

To learn more about the SmartAPPetite project click here.

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