Communicating diabetes and diets on Twitter - a semantic content analysis

Kristina Eriksson-Backa, Kim Holmberg, Stefan Ek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


This paper analyzes 1) the semantic content of tweets discussing diabetes and diets, and 2) the conversational connections of those tweeting and those being mentioned in the tweets. The content analysis of the tweets aims at mapping what kinds of diets are mentioned in conversations about diabetes and in what context. Our data consists of 9,042 tweets containing the words diabetes and diet. The findings indicate that analyzing Twitter conversations can be a fruitful and an efficient way to map public opinions about diabetes and diets, as well as other medical issues that concern many people. The results also showed that many private persons act as diabetes advocates spreading information and news about diabetes and diets. Surveying these topics can be useful for healthcare practitioners; as these are in contact with patients with diabetes, it is important that they are aware of both the most discussed topics and the most common information sources, who are often laymen.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)8–24
JournalInternational Journal of Networking and Virtual Organisations
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • diabetes
  • Diet
  • Consumer health information
  • health communication
  • health information
  • Information dissemination
  • information sharing
  • social media
  • ONLINE social networks
  • Twitter
  • Tweets
  • online discussion
  • online healthcare
  • Web 2.0
  • web resources
  • Information behaviour

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