Evaluation of a mindfulness-based mobile app aimed at promoting awareness of weight-related behaviors in adolescents: A pilot study

Tami Turner, Melanie Hingle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Mindfulness-based interventions are reported to be highly acceptable and have positive effects on youth, yet most are clinic- or school-based aimed at emotional regulation or academic performance. To provide flexible program delivery, we developed and tested a standalone mindfulness-based app aimed at improving weight-related behaviors (eg, diet, physical activity, sleep) in adolescents. Objective: Our objective was to assess the feasibility, acceptability, and utility of a mindfulness-based mobile app. Methods: In a single-arm pilot study, 15 adolescents (14-18 years) were prompted to access the app once a day, every day for 6 weeks. Outcomes were measured by in-app and poststudy surveys, and descriptive statistical analyses were performed. Time within a mindfulness state was self-reported during weekly timed practices. Results: The app was rated highly for content and encouraging the practice of activities to promote mindfulness states. Teens reported increased awareness of eating behaviors and high adherence, particularly during physically active practices. Average self-reported time spent in a mindfulness state increased 2.5 times by week 6 (78 [SD 17] seconds) compared to week 1 (31 [SD 21] seconds). Conclusions: The high acceptability and utility ratings of the app, increases in reported time in mindfulness states, and high frequency of participation, including mindful eating and physical activity, suggest the mindfulness-based mobile app has the potential to improve awareness of weight-related behaviors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere67
JournalJMIR Research Protocols
Volume6
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2017

Keywords

  • Adolescent
  • App
  • Diet
  • MHealth
  • Mindfulness
  • Physical activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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