Getting nutritional information via text message may be most effective way for communicating daily basic eating requirements, a new study has found.
Receiving caloric intake information through a daily text message is effective at better helping people to understand and adhere to dietary recommendations and make healthier meal choices, according to the study published in the journal Health Promotion Practice.
Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health studied 246 adults to survey their nutritional knowledge and assess their interpretation of the numbers of calories they intake each day.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends a diet of 2,000 calories per day. All packaged food is required to have its nutritional information listed on a label which researchers say can often be misinterpreted and having calorie counts alone is not enough.
Over half (58 %) of the participants that took part in the study said that they were not aware of the 2,000-calorie-a-day diet recommendation.
The participants were divided into three groups with one group receiving a weekly text message with caloric intake needs, another group received the information through an email and the final group did not receive any information.
After four weeks, the researchers evaluated surveys taken by the participants to assess their knowledge of daily caloric needs post-study. They found that the group who had received the information through text messages were twice as likely to take the 2,000 calorie FDA recommendation into account.