Can your camera phone and Facebook help you to lose weight?
Can your camera phone help you to lose weight? The Facebook C Diet is a social media experiment in mindful eating using a cell phone camera and Facebook. It was created to see if food craving compulsions could be controlled through community-based, online coaching.
Participants wanted to find out if their food choices were based on convenience, calories, cost or a combination of all three. [See their remarkable weight loss transformations on Facebook]
Unlike a written food journal, the act of imminently photographing what we are about to eat — upon preparation (or ordering at a restaurant) — puts one in a more responsible — sensible, really — frame of mind. Questions like, “am I really going to eat this?” have now become “I know I will feel great after I eat this.”
It isn’t for everyone; sometimes people are disqualified for cheating, sometimes they get honorable leave, and other times, they simply stopped sending photos. But participants who remain, not only lose considerable weight, they succeed in creating new behaviors surrounding their relationship with food. But those that lost weight, succeeded in changing their behavior, possibly allowing them to keep the weight off. (see some of their comments)
So far, there are almost 10,000 photos in the Facebook C Diet weekly albums. Participants must indiciate why they *chose* the specific meal based on one of the three C’s mentioned: calories, cost, convenience or perhaps all three. Participants also include a description of how they feel now (affects their food choice) and how they felt after their last meal. The commentary is quite revelatory.
A community has subsequently developed among the participants — each of whom have a secret, fun name. The “avatars” so to speak allow the participants to freely comment on their own photos, and others’ without feeling judged or otherwise. It turns eating into a game — sort of.
Since the Facebook C Diet was started, the participants have created a Facebook Group to support, motivate, vent or to just gather and discuss their lives, struggles and triumps on their weight loss goals and successes.
The Facebook C Diet runs for three months at a time and is supported by these household brands: Chobani, Pacific Foods, Tilvee, Earth Balance, Manitoba Harvest, Nordic Naturals, Vega, Navitas Naturals, Beanitos, Pure Bar, Oxylent. Each brand sends the participant an incentive to support their weight loss goals. Brands also participate in the weekly Food Angel contest which promotes a “new,” miracle food in which the participants must guess in order to win additional incentives. Food Angels are randomly selected and each participant gets a chance at being chosen.
- For more information on my Facebook C Diet, contact me. Click here
- To see jaw-dropping “before and after” weight loss photos from Facebook C Diet participants, click here
- To read heartfelt — most were handwritten — thank you notes from current and past Facebook C Diet participants, click here
- To read another post on habits, click here
- And, to read all Facebook C Diet related posts on this blog, click here!