2 Weeks


Miro, Figma, Trello, Invision


Team of 4


General Assembly Case Study

vita | Habit Healthy App


Vita. A not-for-profit organisation with a vision to apply behavioural science to help inspire and enable people to achieve healthier lives through sustainable lifestyle decisions.

Vita's Values: "Education, Honesty and empowerment"


Vita currently has an in-person program that revolves around chronic disease prevention it focuses on

  • How to deal with roadblock and challenges,

  • Changing their food habits

  • Increasing their activity levels

  • Reinforcing their habits

The Problem

According to the Australian Institute of health and welfare, Australia #1 killer is Coronary Heart Disease. The most insane part  70-90% of the cases preventable. Vita wishes to scale the in-person program via a digital product, to an audience of 100 million by 2023.

"We need an interface that helps people monitor what they put in their body, and celebrate what they don't because helping people eat better is the first step in fighting chronic diseases"- Vita

Based on Vita's research they know the best way to reach their business goals efficiently would be to implement a plant-based diet into the lives of their users, with the MVP focusing on helping people eat better.

Our Solution

We developed an app that at its core it's based on behavioural science, focused on mindful eating and habit change.


We headed straight from low-fi to high-fi because during our testing we saw users didn't understand what was going on because of the lack of context and imagery.




After dissecting the brief as a team, wee assumed our problem is largely psychologically-based so having a spread of insights would give us a wider overview of the psychological process that influence people to make a transition to a healthier lifestyle. 

We then decided to develop a research plan to help us kick-start our research journey.

Research plan would help us:


  • Discover attitudes around health and nutrition

  • Explore why people make poor choices

  • Understand the current landscape to identify an opportunity

To gain a better understanding of how the team was currently thinking of the Vita and its problem, we jotted down our assumptions and from there we categorized them into an affinity map. This created our topic map and allowed us to have a refer to keywords during interviews

While doing this, we jumped into…..

Market Research

Heading into our market research we wanted to know who Vita was up against in the market to understand who where and how our competitors were operating in the market. We found that the Health & nutrition industry/market was saturated with similar features.


Topic Map & Assumptions

While doing our market research we jotted down our assumptions.

We affinity mapped our assumptions and create grouped them together in categories, This would guide us during the interviews and surveys.

Competitive Analysis

We headed straight into our competitive analysis with brands like My fitness pal, Habitica, Noom, Omanda etc.



  • All brands utilize research as a means of evidence

  • They are scientifically based

  • People value quantification as they like to know how things are measured

To further understand how Vita could differentiate in the market I decided to do a feature analysis so our team could identify areas of improvement, similarities and differences.

User Interviews & Surveys

We decided to interview a broad spread of subjects but had to be careful at how we approached each interview because we knew could lead to a skewed collection of data.

Our initial survey was based around some of the assumptions we had. We wanted to capture qualitative data so that we would have an idea of what our potential target audience was thinking.


We also did another six user interviews because we didn't believe we had enough insights to truly understand what our user needs, this was essential in building our personas.

Secondary Research

After picking out information from our expert brains we discovered info based on behavioural science behind habit formation and motivations.

Some relevant methods and theories we decided to look into:


  • Cue Reward Cycle - (People need to understand their cues to make changes to their habits)

  • Atomic Habits - (Breaking down goals into smaller goals)

  • Celebration - (Celebrate wins to keep the user motivated in want to make long-term changes)



Affinity Mapping

To make sense of our insights, we synthesize them in an affinity map using MIRO. In order to not skew our data, we made sure to keep our user/coverts and experts insight separate.

User Insights (17)

  • Users are busy and value convenience

  • Experience cognitive dissonance meaning they know they're making bad decisions but do it anyway resulting in a feeling guilty. - This was evident in almost all interviews


Expert Insights (10)

  • Importance of accountability

  • Breaking down goals into micro habits

  • Celebrating small wins is key to stay motivated while sticking to new habits

Persona & Mindset

As we finished our personas team member Sayoa, brought up the fact that something wasn't right. Our persona barely scraped the surface and it felt as though we were cherry-picking insights from interviews and generated a persona-based of that.

We were at our most pivotal moment in the project.

We either decided to move on due to the time constraint OR stop and start more research about our users in-depth.


We stopped and made another 6 user interviews forming out the second round.

Journey Mapping

After we solidified our personas, understanding their journey was easy.


This journey map outlines users health and nutrition journey, we wanted to target them when they had realized they needed to make a sustainable lifestyle change, not just try a new diet.

Problem Statement

Finally, we came to our problem statement...

"Frankie needs to form sustainable nutrition habits so that she can combat decision fatigue."

How Might We?


  • HMW combat decision fatigue?

  • HMW inform sustainable habits

  • HMW educate Frankie about Nutrition

This allowed our group to understand what we can start to tackle for our MVP.




Content strategy









It was difficult to quantify the outcomes of eating healthy because the benefits happen through our physical/mental health. So we knew we had to do some intense brainstorming of how to present this data on the app.


Crazy 8's | 2 Rounds




We choose to focus on 2 HMW statements for our crazy 8s. After the first round, we discussed our ideas and found that it was very mediocre/broad but the second round opened up opportunities for gamification and our ideas ran wild.


Initially, we thought our measure of success would be for Frankie to delete the app once she gained control of her habits, thinking that a 12-week program would help the user get their eating habits control.




However, we discarded this idea of deleting the app and decided Vita needed to bring value to users even after their healthy habits are formed. Knowing Vita wanted 100 million users by 2023, we wanted to keep the users in our ecosystem.

User Flow

We wanted to empower Frankie to recognize how her emotions influenced her eating habits.










We decided to target a known cue that could help Frankie, leaving work on her way home.



Low-Fi Wire-frames & Prototypes

Using the features/ideas we generated, we decided on the ones we were meant really captures what Frankie needed.


  • Push notifications would check on how the user is feeling

  • Actively use the journal to reinforce their motivations.

  • Visual graphic - aimed to visually appeal the user by mapping their eating decisions/emotions


Feeling, accomplished and proud we took what we knew about behavioural science and we tested our low-fi prototype.

User Feedback

Our users were not a fan. They tore our solution apart within seconds. We then realized something was critically wrong.

"If I felt really stressed after a day at work and got a notification asking how I was feeling and telling me what I was eating…I'd think 'f*ck no I'm not, I'm ordering a pizza"- Usability testee 1




What does Frankie truly need?

Something wasn't right... conducting so much work on the subject matter experts, we fell in a hole that pushed aside our biggest impact statement on the MVP Matrix.

"HMW combat decision fatigue?"

Second User Flow & SiteMap






Going back to the user flow we had to make changes to address our problem statement






Style Guide & Components

We wanted to keep a rounded style throughout our design to depict a friendly demeanour.


Market Integration

During our research, we discovered how important marketing is.

The author/influencer we interview outlined how you could have the #1 product in the market but without the right marketing, it would never take off and get noticed. Some examples of where we'd push our advertisements.


Sitemap allowed us to gain a better

understanding of what's on the

content structure on the app

The Solution


  • A system that pairs users motivation to a diet giving them feedback while developing their routine.

  • Consist of a database of healthy recipes, while also rewarding you for eating more nutritious foods.

  • The planner would allow users to plan what meals to eat, which is a critical aspect for our primary persona as they tend to be organised and routine drive



What did I learn?

Importance of Collaboration & Discussion

Throughout the project our team collaborated & communicated at almost all stages, it was a vital component in the creation of our app. During our persona creation, our discussions lead us to find that we were only just scraping the surface. If we had continued, our final solution would've been designed completely off and our understanding of our persona would be skewed

Importance of following the process

During the ideation phase, we didn't complete a full design studio because we were too mesmerized on a concept during the second round of crazy 8s - This would've saved us time and potentially gave us more creative/exciting ideas.

We pivoted a few times during the project and this could've been intercepted if we had referred back to our research but.. hey we all live and we learn.


Check out my other case studies

Check out the team members for this project 🙌! - Kiran, Michele, Sayoa


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