Boston researchers building a hypertension-focused diet app

Heart monitor

Boston Medical Center researchers are aiming to redesign a popular diet strategy into mobile app format as a way to help patients manage and control hypertension, as well as lose weight.

The app is based on the Dietary Approaches to Stopping Hypertension (DASH) diet regimen, according to an article at Boston University Today.

“We got the idea of rebuilding the DASH diet using mobile technology,” Devin Mann, associate chief medical information officer for innovation and population health at Boston Medical Center, said. The diet has proven useful for lowering cholesterol and helping users avoid potential diabetes, according to the article.

The app, for which development is being led by Lisa Quintiliani, an assistant professor of internal medicine, will provide users with the ability to record food intake and monitor blood pressure, weight and activity. The smartphone tool will also offer counseling and human coaching.

 “We’re using the app for all the things a computer is good for, and using a human for all the things a human is good for, which is listening and responding and building rapport,” Quintiliani said.

Smartphone apps increasingly are being tapped as tools for weight control and health issues. As FierceMobileHealthcare reported last month, researchers are investigating how technology-based behavioral training can impact eating decisions via an app and a computer game.

The DASH effort, which involves 24 participants, was on schedule to be completed by the end of July, according to BU Today.

For more information:
- read the BU Today article