Development and validation of a smartphone image-based app for dietary intake assessment among Palestinian undergraduates
Publication Type
Original research

Accurate dietary assessment is required in a variety of research felds and clinical settings. Imagebased dietary assessment using smartphones applications ofer the opportunity to reduce both researcher and participant burden compared to traditional dietary assessment methods. The current study, conducted in Palestine, aimed to design an image-based dietary assessment application, to assess the relative validity of the application as a dietary assessment tool for energy and macronutrient intake using the 3-Day Food Record (3-DFR) as a reference method, and to test its usability among a sample of Palestinian university students. The development of a smartphone application (Ghithaona) designed to assess energy and macronutrient intake is reported. The application validity was tested among a sample of Palestinian undergraduates from An-Najah National University. Participants recorded their dietary intake using the Ghithaona application over 2 consecutive days and 1 weekend day. Intake from the Ghithaona application were compared to intake collected from 3-DFR, taken on 2 consecutive weekdays and 1 weekend day, in the second week following the Ghithaona application. At the end of the study, participants completed an exit survey to test assess application usability and to identify barriers to its use. Mean diferences in energy, and macronutrients intake were evaluated between the methods using paired t-tests or Wilcoxon signedrank tests. Agreement between methods was ascertained using Pearson correlations and Bland– Altman plots. The Ghithaona application took 6 months to develop. The validation test was completed by 70 participants with a mean age of 21.0 ± 2.1 years. No signifcant diferences were found between the two methods for mean intakes of energy or macronutrients (p> 0.05). Signifcant correlations between the two methods were observed for energy, and all macronutrients (r= 0.261–0.58, p ≤ 0.05). Bland–Altman plots confrmed wide limits of agreement between the methods with no systematic bias. According to the exit survey, it was found that majority of participants strongly agreed and agreed that the application saves time (94.2%), helps the participant to pay attention to their dietary habits (87.2%), and is easy to use (78.6%). The Ghithaona application showed relative validity for assessment of nutrient intake of Palestinian undergraduates

Scientific Reports
Publisher Country
United Kingdom
Thomson Reuters
Impact Factor
Publication Type
Prtinted only