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Wednesday, April 26 • 9:40am - 10:00am
Drink Up: A closer look at cognitive factors and their relationship with habit and behavior change in the context of drinking water for improved health in emerging adults

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This study examines the connection between executive function (EF) and understood factors related to behavior change, i.e., self-efficacy and motivation. Participants were expected to change drinking habits by drinking more water. It was hypothesized that water intake would increase over 90 days, and that there would be a positive relationship between EF scores and successful behavior change. We predicted that it would be easier to exhibit the desired behavior and create “healthy habits” if one tracked progress daily, set goals, reported higher motivation, and was presented with comprehensive information. At time 1, all participants (n=33, aged 18-25) received a water bottle and completed a battery of habit (motivation for change, readiness to change-RTC) questionnaires and EF tasks (stroop, go-nogo task, running span, trail-making, verbal fluency). The treatment group (n=16) set goals, tracked, and reported daily water consumption with a free smartphone app, and were presented with information on healthy water drinking. The control group (n=10) did not track water intake or learn about benefits of drinking water. All participants returned in 90 days for repeated-measures testing. Correlational analysis determined that mean water intake differed statistically significantly between time points, and post hoc tests revealed a significant negative correlation in water intake between month 2 and month 3 for the treatment group. Water intake did not consistently increase over time. At time 2 (n=15) inhibition scores were marginally negatively correlated with total water intake; this negates the hypothesis that better inhibitory skills may lead to more successful control of personal behaviors. At time 1, intention to change was marginally negatively correlated with total water intake, and was also negatively correlated with total water intake at time 2. This negates the hypothesis that greater motivation to change is consistently correlated with long-term successful behavior changes.


Wednesday April 26, 2017 9:40am - 10:00am
102 Carmichael

Attendees (4)