Next Article in Journal
Association between Cardiac Remodeling and Metabolic Alteration in an Experimental Model of Obesity Induced by Western Diet
Previous Article in Journal
Dietary Diversity and Food Variety in Chinese Children Aged 3–17 Years: Are They Negatively Associated with Dietary Micronutrient Inadequacy?
Article Menu
Issue 11 (November) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Nutrients 2018, 10(11), 1673;

Messaging for Interventions Aiming to Improve Calcium Intake in Young Adults—A Mixed Methods Study

Charles Perkin Centre, School of Life and Environmental Sciences, The University of Sydney, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 September 2018 / Revised: 30 October 2018 / Accepted: 1 November 2018 / Published: 5 November 2018
Full-Text   |   PDF [2439 KB, uploaded 5 November 2018]   |  


Social media channels are the preferred communication tools for many young adults and therefore may have applications in health promotion. The framing of messages is important, as an intervention must resonate with the target group. The aim of this study was to determine what type of messaging is preferred by young adults to improve their calcium intake. A cross-sectional web-based survey was conducted and young adults aged 18 to 25 years recruited. A 14-item survey collected information on the participants’ demographics, ranking of text messages, mock Facebook posts with images, preferences related to type of posts they find personally relevant, and frequency and likelihood of engagement with posts and polls in social media. In addition, optional responses from participants about factors that motivate them to consume more calcium-rich foods were included and thematically analysed using NVivo. Eighty-one participants (17 males) completed the survey. No significant difference in ranking of the text messages and Facebook posts were found. Participants indicated that recipe demonstrations (n = 71), cost-saving tips (n = 70), and information on recommended daily intake (n = 62) were personally relevant, while meal inspiration (n = 70), awareness-raising posts (n = 41), and messages about obtaining enough calcium from non-dairy sources (n = 38) would encourage them to eat more calcium-rich foods. The qualitative replies indicated the tone (in young adults’ language) and length (short) of messages preferred, and the messaging they perceived would motivate young adults. In conclusion, short, aesthetically pleasing and personally relevant messages written in the language of young adults were recommended. View Full-Text
Keywords: young adults; calcium; health promotion; social media; public health young adults; calcium; health promotion; social media; public health

Figure 1

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Rouf, A.; Allman-Farinelli, M. Messaging for Interventions Aiming to Improve Calcium Intake in Young Adults—A Mixed Methods Study. Nutrients 2018, 10, 1673.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
Nutrients EISSN 2072-6643 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top