Call for families to try healthy eating app gets Jamie Oliver’s support
Coventry University’s call for families to trial its new healthy eating app, supported by Warwickshire County Council, has received a vote of support from one of the food and nutrition industry’s leading voices.
Jamie Oliver’s Foundation has lent its backing to the uni’s appeal for 400 families to download and try its new Innovate UK-funded Health Heroes app, which uses games and goal-setting features to help parents – and their kids – manage meal portion sizes and achieve a balanced diet.
Parents are being invited to complete a short survey before and after using the app, during which they will be asked what they think are some of the factors influencing portion sizes – for example existing habits, or use of household objects to guide how much food is on the plate.
The app is aimed at families with children aged between 5 and 12.
Designed in consultation with parents and developed by Warwick-based health app specialists Evolyst, Health Heroes is underpinned by research carried out by academics in Coventry University’s Centre for Technology Enabled Health Research (CTEHR).
Health psychology experts from the centre drew from their own research into behavioural science, designing the app to encourage families to monitor their own eating and dietary habits and change them in a proactive, positive way.
The app invites users to log what they eat using colour-coded food groups and hand portion sizes, and gives feedback in the form of an infographic detailing the proportions of food groups being eaten, and suggesting food group goals for the following week.
Visual aids, a built-in quiz and daily tips also help families build their knowledge and understanding of nutrition and portion sizes in a fun and engaging way.
It is widely recognised – including by the World Health Organisation (WHO) – that current evidence points towards smaller portions of nutritious food being an important part of an effective approach to tackling obesity, particularly in children.
It will be available to members of the public to use from Thursday 6 July at healthheroes.co.uk.
The website includes information about how to download it to Apple and Android devices.
Two planning applications for the parish; closing date for comments has passed but the application details can still be viewed.