Cell phones are helping people both young and old to lead more fulfilling and productive lives by assisting them to stay in closer contact with friends and loved ones. Cell phones also allow people to make use of a wide range of apps that can help them to streamline their time by giving them up to the minute access to news and information from the Internet. In a new twist, however, cell phones may soon also be able to help people lose weight.
How can a cell phone possibly help with weight loss? The answer lies with researchers working with the Department of Family and Preventive Medicine at UCSD, the University of California at San Diego. These researchers will soon commence a study in which text messages are transmitted to participants several times each day. These text messages will remind target users to keep their nutritional goals in mind. Some of the messages will be tailored to the personal circumstances of participants.
The study, known as ConTXT is an “innovative, yet straightforward approach to getting people to monitor their diet and physical activity,” according to Kevin Patrick, who serves as a professor at the UC San Diego School of Medicine. “We are trying to make this as pain free as possible. People won’t stick to something that’s too difficult and they’re all multi-tasking anyway. We’re doing this study to increase what we know about using the cell phone to get messages to busy people on the go.”