Dr. Jared McGuirt, assistant professor in the Department of Nutrition, is leading a study, called Health of the Force (PDF), in collaboration with the University of Kentucky’s Dr. Alison Gustafson. The study consists of Fort Bragg soldiers receiving text alerts, helping them make healthy food choices so they remain fit for duty.
The pair used an app UNCG’s computer science students helped program. A 2020 Health of the Force U.S. Army study revealed that one in five service members is obese and had trouble meeting fitness and weight standards, making McGuirt and Gustafson’s study especially relevant.
About 65% of those participating in the study liked getting the location-specific text messages. The results showed texts helped soldiers make healthier choices about where they purchased food.