Development of a mediation strategy for negative health determinant

Project Overview
For cancer patients, nutrition matters a lot, as malnutrition and eating disorders are common negative side effects. Affected people often don't have access to qualified nutrition experts or are unable to afford counselling. The Ani app tracks and shares information about nutrition, symptoms and health so that experts in the field of Nutritional Therapy and Oncology can better understand the disease progression of the patient and respond at an early stage to any signs of malnutrition. Ani provides individual nutritional recommendations and relief from symptoms, and enables the efficient management and sharing of health data, including organising appointments, medical records and lab results. The app helps cancer patients in their daily management of the disease, but it does not replace medical treatment or nutritional counselling, rather it works closely with them and functions as a smart therapeutic accompaniment for cancer patients with the aim to enhance outpatient care.
My Contributions
Project Management
Market and User Research
Interviews and Transcription
Design Thinking Methods
Data Analysis and Evaluation
Concept Development
Figma Prototyping and Testing
UX / UI and Brand Design
Documentation and Visualisation
Master Thesis | 5 months
Digital Healthcare • Therapy Companion • Mobile App
Who is the product for?
Ani, thoughtfully designed for the well-being of cancer patients, addresses the complex challenges they face. As a response to the increasing digitalization of healthcare, it takes a holistic approach, integrating the expertise of experts such as physicians, oncologists or nutritional and psychological therapists who are involved in cancer care. This integrated platform fosters seamless collaboration, filling the gaps in the cancer care journey. In addition, the app also provides support to selected family members and caregivers to ensure a comprehensive approach to healing and reduce feelings of uncertainty when dealing with cancer patients. Tailored to the specific needs of patients, Ani places a strong focus on nutritional well-being, empowering individuals to sustain their strength and resilience as they navigate the complexities of their disease.

user group selection

At the beginning, the user group is selected, the usage is supposed to be primarily for patients, but relatives can also get access by being linked to the corresponding patient.
Outsiders can also use the app to obtain information about cancer.  The app thus functions as a platform for obtaining well-founded knowledge relating to cancer.

registration & validation

The ani app offers streamlined access via third-party authentication, utilizing existing accounts or mobile numbers for identity verification. QR code registration establishes a direct link between users and healthcare providers, including oncologists and therapists, with seamless integration into digital patient records, ensuring a comprehensive healthcare management.

cancer type & localisation

After registration and validation of their identity, patients must first indicate their type of cancer. This information is particularly important because there are certain types of cancers where the localisation of the cancer, such as in the gastrointestinal areas, already indicates an increased risk for a possible eating disorder, digestive problems or malnutrition.
Taking into account the needs and specifying factors such as problems with nutrition help to compile suitable functions in the dashboard.

set goals & choose features

Users can set goals and share the intention why they are using the ani app. Taking into account the needs and specifying factors such as problems with nutrition help to compile suitable functions in the dashboard.

"You do get books and you can acquire a lot of knowledge, but it's very boring to read everything and not exactly individualised."

Psychology expert_01, ♀(44), naturopath for psychotherapy / registered geriatric nurse

translated citation from interviews

„Also man kriegt zwar Bücher und und kann sich ganz viel Wissen aneignen, aber es ist halt sehr trocken, das alles zu lesen und halt nicht gerade individuell angepasst.“
Psychologieexpertin_01, ♀(44), Heilpraktikerin für Psychotherapie/ examinierte Altenpflegerin

original citation from interviews

The dashboard is tailored to individual user needs, taking into account their questions and feature preferences. It offers a range of user-friendly widgets for activities such as nutrition tracking, symptom monitoring, personalized recommendations, weight monitoring as well as medication and water intake.
As users interact with the app, it adapts and enhances its suggestions to better suit individual needs. These intuitive widgets not only streamline data entry but also serve as a convenient gateway to explore the app's full array of functions.

meal log & plate model

Users can effortlessly log their meals, set meal reminders, and track their food intake. In nutritional medicine, the plate model is commonly used to measure if someone is eating enough by keeping a record of the amount of food the they have eaten.

accompanying symptoms

Besides tracking the eaten meal it is possible to document the occuring accompanying symptoms triggered by specific foods. This allows for more precise recommendations and measures, such as targeted recipes and selected foods, to avoid recurring problems.

food preferences & recipes

Preset tags make it easy to add meals that have already been eaten, as well as allowing users to note personal food preferences, such as choosing softer or quick-to-prepare options for added comfort and convenience.

"The prevalence of malnutrition in cancer patients ranges from about 20% to more than 70%. However, 10–20% of cancer patients’ deaths are related to malnutrition, not the malignancy itself."

Beirer, A. (2021). Malnutrition and cancer, diagnosis and treatment. Memo - Magazine of European Medical Oncology, 14(2), 168–173

original citation

„Also man kriegt zwar Bücher und und kann sich ganz viel Wissen aneignen, aber es ist halt sehr trocken, das alles zulesen und halt nicht gerade individuell angepasst.“

Beirer, A. (2021). Malnutrition and cancer, diagnosis and treatment. Memo - Magazine of European Medical Oncology, 14(2), 168–173

translated citation

meal capture

In order to keep track of personal eating behaviours, photos of meals are also taken in nutrition therapy. Using Ani, these meals can be quickly journaled using the ⊕ button in the menu bar.

AI evaluation & tag system

The ani app evaluates the meals using AI and photogrammetry to estimate the ingredients, composition and an approximate quantity based on the volume. Additional ingredients can be added and, by means of suitable tags, these dishes or own recipes can thus be recorded in the system in order to find them in future meal logs. Created images can be used for the plate model.

"At the very beginning in the hospital, I kept track in Excel, because the nurses asked me every day about side effects, defecations and the intake of medication and I had to take notes for those times.
At some point, the excel chart on my iPhone was too tiring for my eyes. It was just a lot of information all at once."

Cancer Patient_04, (34), Nasopharyngeal
carcinoma + metastases in lymph nodes

translated citation

„Ganz am Anfang in der Klinik habe ich das auch in Excel geführt, weil die Kranken-pflegerinnen jeden Tag noch wegen der Nebenwirkungen, dem Stuhlgang und der Medikamenteneinnahme gefragt haben und ich die Zeiten mitnotieren musste. Die Tabelle auf dem iPhone war mir irgendwann zu anstrengend für die Augen. Es waren einfach sehr viele Informationen auf einmal."

Krebspatientin_04, ♀ (34), Nasopharynxkarzinom + Lymphknoten Metastasen

original citation from interviews

track symptoms

Recognizing that each patient's experience differs due to cancer type and treatment, the app emphasizes comprehensive symptom tracking over an extended period with detailed insight, including annotations and timestamps.

symptom overview & recommendations

The frequency of logged symptoms allows for the creation of detailed graphs, providing a comprehensive view of symptom patterns. Users can easily review previous days, gaining insights into potential reasons behind the symptoms. Based on the recorded symptoms and data the app recommends individualised measures and tipps in different forms like podcasts, videos, recipes or articles.


hours of recordings







weight loss & intervention

Rapid weight loss can signal malnutrition. The dashboard monitors medication, water balance, and body weight, alerting users to critical weight loss and advises a consultation with a physician to take preventive measures. The appointments with an authorised and responsible physician can be scheduled directly in the app and will automatically appear in the calendar.

health data history

A detailed health data history is essential for personalized treatment plans. Tracking recurring symptoms, meals, nutrients, and uploading blood lab results provides insights into macronutrients and micronutrients, revealing potential deficiencies. Bioelectrical impedance analysis informs about body composition, enabling predictions about illness progression. A low BCM value may signal early cachexia, addressed with dietary adjustments and increased physical activity.

personalised support & empowerment

The app transforms cancer care by tailoring recommendations based on user inputs and appointments, especially before critical events like chemotherapy. The Milestones section empowers users to set and track goals, enhancing motivation. The Emergency Pass provides quick access to vital patient information.

health management & communication

The personalised area includes contact information of relatives and healthcare professionals. Users control shared information, managing different details from nutrition to medications.
Ani facilitates communication, allowing users to book appointments, organise video consultations with physicians and therapists, and improve daily life with illness. Granting relatives access to patient-specific health data ensures a comprehensive understanding of treatments.

& digital patient record

Users can efficiently share therapy-related data with their healthcare providers, benefiting from seamless organisation and exchange of information related to cancer treatment. The app serves as a versatile tool for building a digital patient record accessible from anywhere, offering valuable insights into the disease progression beyond clinical care. The app supports customised therapy, connects patients with their healthcare team and proves indispensable for managing various tasks related to the disease.

healthcare structures

In addition, Ani facilitates the search and for important health services through a glossary of qualified and certified experts in nutrition therapy, psychology, oncology or support groups. This ensures that patients have an overview of heathcare structures in their area and can access professional support.