Lynnette Lyzwinski, Caffery L C, Bambling M and Edirippulige S
University of Queensland, Australia
Scientific Tracks Abstracts: J Hepatol Gastroint Dis
Introduction: Mindfulness can help college students with key challenges they face relating to weight gain and stress induced emotional eating and binge eating. Little is presently known about the extent to which students are aware of mindfulness, their conceptualization and understanding of it and the barriers as well as the facilitators of mindfulness on campus which is useful information for future health education and promotions campaigns. Additionally, promoting mindfulness through mHealth is a novel and accessible intervention medium. While there have been qualitative studies on mHealth for weight loss, there has not been a study on mHealth for weight loss using mindfulness that has explored student perspectives on mHealth for promoting mindfulness. Method: A qualitative exploratory pilot study with a participatory design was undertaken at the St Lucia Campus at the University of Queensland in March 2017. Data was analyzed using NVivo software. Result: The key barriers to a mindful lifestyle on campus were identified as being social, cultural, knowledge and time management related. The food environment also promoted a fast food mentality over slow mindful eating. The sample text messages were positively received by students. Students preferred messages with practical tips about how to be mindful and how to integrate mindful reflection of both one�??s body and environment while on campus. Students preferred a theoretical future student-centered mindfulness app that had the following design features: A simple design interface, a focus on education/practical tips and real-life practical exercises. It is important to consider maximizing the potential facilitators of use and minimize potential identified barriers when developing and designing a future mHealth mindfulness intervention. Conclusion: Future Health studies may consider integrating mindfulness-based text messages in their interventions for weight and stress as this is a novel feature that appears to be acceptable for students.
Lynnette Lyzwinski is a PhD student at the School of Medicine, University of Queensland. Her research interests involve lifestyle medicine, digital health and randomized controlled trials that target lifestyle related health behaviors.