New Technology Being Developed to Track Diet

November 11, 2014


Technology is a wonderful thing: it helps us get to places we have never been before and it helps us do things we never could. With regards to dieting, technology has broken down exactly how our bodies interact with the environment in the form of calorie and distance trackers.

The Advances Keep Coming

But there is one man who dares to take things further. Dr. Edward Sazonov, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at The University of Alabama, has noticed that when it comes to dieting technology that tracks your actual diet, the information is completely reliant upon the user inputting information.

Dr. Sazonov hopes to change that by developing a sensor worn behind the ear that tracks your diet in an attempt to give the most accurate diet information that would otherwise be subject to error with self-reporting.

“Weight gain comes from an unbalance of the energy we take in versus the energy we expend,” Sazonov said. “We can estimate diet and nutrient intake, but the primary method is self-reporting. The sensor could provide objective data, helping us better understand patterns of food intake associated with obesity and eating disorders.”

What is it?

The Automatic Ingestion Monitor, or AIM, has the potential to monitor eating by automatically detecting and capturing imagery of food intake and to estimate the mass and the energy content of ingested food. A little sensor behind your ear will track the mastication of your food through your jaw movements.

“Eating may be an unconscious, even automatic behavior for some individuals, and the literature is full of examples of dietary behaviors which increase the risk for overeating,” Sazonov said.

Sazonov’s device could potentially open the lid on how much a person overeats, giving them a more controlled look at what goes into their bodies and hopefully giving them the ability to take control of their diets.

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