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Food Trainer App Influences Healthy Diet Choices, Aids Weight Loss

Update Date: Jan 18, 2017 08:30 AM EST

A novel Food Trainer app may help train the brain to make healthy food choices and reduce the intake of calories by more than 200 calories a day, reveals a recent research. The Food Trainer app devised by Dr Natalia Lawrence, a Neuroscientist, is ready to be launched and will be available to the public at no cost.

Dr. Lawrence tapped into the working of the brain's reward system using images of food to understand human cravings and impulses for unhealthy food. This brain training app is basically a game that cultivates a healthy habit by training the brain to reach out for healthy food rather than unhealthy ones like alcohol and trans fat laden food, reveal psychologists. 

Laboratory trials and experiments to gauge the efficacy of this new Food Trainer App involved a study of  83 adults. Findings revealed that those who used the app and played on it even as less as 4 times in a week had lost weight. They had further reduced their calorie intake per day by 220 kcal, reports Belfast Telegraph.

When the user plays the app, pictures of both healthy and unhealthy food are flashed on the screen. The game involves the user to press on healthy food while not responding to images of unhealthy ones.

This app thus trains the brain to control poor food choices in real life. There is a data collection at the end of the month enabled by the app where the user needs to record the intake of unhealthy food.

According to researchers, subjects need to train on this app for as less as 20 minutes a day to lower their temptation for unhealthy food. This results in lowered calorie intake on a daily basis which helps weight loss in the long run, reveals Huffington Post.

Explaining how promising the app can be, Dr Lawrence said, "It's very exciting to see that our free and simple training can change eating habits and have a positive impact on some people's lives. It's a tool to help people make healthier choices. In an age where unhealthy food is so abundant and easily available and obesity is a growing health crisis, we need to design innovative ways to support people to live more healthily."

The timing of the launch of this app is thought to be opportune as people usually make resolutions about diet and weight loss around this time of the year.


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