Iterative Development of an Innovative Smartphone-Based Dietary Assessment Tool: Traqq
Lucassen, Desiree A.; Brouwer-Brolsma, Elske M.; Wiel, Anne M. van de; Siebelink, Els; Feskens, Edith J.M.
To collect dietary intake data in a fast and reliable manner, a flexible and innovative smartphone application (app) called Traqq was developed (iOS/Android). This app can be used as a food record and 24-h recall (or shorter recall periods). Different sampling schemes can be created on either prespecified or random days/times within a predetermined period for both methods, with push notifications to urge the participants to register their food intake. In case of non-response, notifications are automatically rescheduled to ensure complete data collection. For use as a food record, respondents can access the app and log their food intake throughout the day. Food records close automatically at the end of the day; recalls close after submission of the consumed items. The recall as well as the food record module provide access to an extensive food list based on the Dutch food composition database (FCDB), which can be accustomed to fit different research purposes. When selecting a food item, respondents are simultaneously prompted to insert portion size, i.e., in household measures (e.g., cups, spoons, glasses), standard portion sizes (e.g., small, medium, large), or weight in grams, and eating occasion/time of consumption. Portion size options can be adjusted, e.g., only entry in grams in case of a weighed food record or time of consumption instead of eating occasion). The app also includes a My Dishes function, which allows the respondent to create their own recipes or product combinations (e.g., a daily breakfast) and only report the total quantity consumed. Subsequently, the app accounts for yield and retention factors. The data are stored on a secure server. If desired, additional questions, i.e., in general or those related to specific food items or eating occasions can be incorporated. This paper describes the development of the system (app and backend), including expert evaluations and usability testing.