Nutritional Fitbit

Creating a personalized diagnostic tool that measures and immediately reports on nutritional deficiencies. Linked to a user-friendly personalized app that scans and tracks food ‘scores’ based on nutritional value and environmental impact. It will also be able to share personalized positive food behaviors with its users.

The nutritional Fitbit must take into account questions of affordability and gender equity.

This sounds a little similar to the Bio-Aging Tracker the Longevity Community is discussing as a potential breakthrough.

@BruceGerman, @Amy_Proulx, @lecoutre, what do you think? Is this audacious enough to be considered a breakthrough? Is anyone else - other than XPRIZE - likely to work on this? Or maybe already working on it?

Calories and micronutrients are already being tracked would need to differentiate from what’s already being done. For example,

There are devices for diabetics already that track in real time, and feedback to smartphone apps. I see a wearable of some kind that will track activity, and be able to calculate the individual needs at that moment, looking back, and perhaps, even connected with a calendar app that will recommend optimum food for the imminent activity plans too. I see a future where we will be 3D printing food, so optimized meals could be prepared by replicators of Star Trek fame would make EXACTLY what we need for our best health. I believe this will happen without an XPRIZE, and it will not solve the challenges alone. It will be a part of it… I am not sure what gender equity has to do with identifying optimized food. Blood type, microbiome, hydration, etc, it’s physical factors that matter most for this.

Thank you both for your feedback!

Is sounds like there is already plenty of innovation in this sphere and it might not be necessary for XPRIZE to incentivize this.

Do you know of other examples?

@lisadreier, @akb, you may be interested in this discussion as well!

As indicated above there are some areas of this topic that are already covered by technology. However, if we did want to be audacious then the following would be a worthy challenge that would benefit health (by detecting anomalies that indicate potential health problems, and by checking nutrient levels in the body).

This challenge would avoid the need to extract blood samples (needles in particular*) and would result in a device that is simply placed on the skin (e.g. like a fitbit). It would identify specific molecules within the body, estimate their concentration, and derive probable conclusions [perhaps with AI assistance].

One way, but not the only way, to do this might be to shine infrared light into the skin and note the spectrum of the reflected signal. Infrared spectroscopy already provides a useful way of identifying molecules in other applications (e.g. - select the Spectrum filter tag).

(* An alternative to needles is to adopt the ultra-fine needle like features on nettles. This could deliver medical drugs or take samples. An innovation elsewhere has adopted a similar approach.)

A technology based solution, ironically will not get to the root of most global nutritional deficiency, which is poverty and lack of access to safe and diversified diets. Yes, there is NIR technology and microneedling techniques using skin patches. The costs of delivery on these would far outweigh the costs of delivering quality food to these individuals and communities. Technology based interventions for nutrition deficiency are very much a privilege based strategy. Not discounting them, but if we are looking at nutrition deficiency as a macroeconomic challenge, this is not the answer. Using these trackers for dietary excess, one could perhaps already say they exist, for insulin resistance, blood pressure, body fat impedence, these are already automated. Our population has been jaded to the answer and no longer pays attention to the feedback.