Trying to lose weight by logging your food is a boring, time-consuming, and frustrating process (ask me how I know). But scientists at Imperial College London are developing an innovative, wearable ear camera to make portion control easy-peasy.
This camera sits on your ear and quietly takes notes of your diet. Of course, it’s AI-powered like everything nowadays, and it’s yet another example of using AI cameras for health and wellness purposes.
This AI ear camera is a part of the EU-funded CoDiet project, developed by Imperial College London and led by AZTI, a Spain-based research center. It includes researchers from 17 institutions across ten countries, including Spain, the UK, Israel, etc. It will include 200 volunteers who will wear the camera while eating, so it can accurately monitor their exact food consumption daily.
The camera is small and shaped to sit on your ear. It resembles certain types of hearing aids. It will be able to recognize both the type of food and how much you eat. No more cheating on your food log by not adding that glass of wine! It will also team up with AI to reveal how our bodies break down food. They’ll look into our gut microbiome and even the metabolites in our urine. Not everyone digests food and absorbs nutrients the same way, so kudos to this detailed approach.
“CoDiet will work on the personalisation of dietary advice instead of the ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach,” said Dr Itziar Tueros, Head of Food and Health at AZTI. “In order to develop a holistic solution to the major challenge of preventing NCDs, it is essential to assemble a multidisciplinary team of leading scientists. This is what CoDiet does.”
“Unhealthy diets are associated with metabolic changes and increased risk of NCDs, such as heart disease, diabetes, obesity and cancer,” CoDiet writes. “According to the World Health Organisation, NCDs kill 41 million people each year, equivalent to 74% of all deaths globally.”
This is why, in addition to the AI camera, the CoDiet project is also cooking up a simulator. They’re designing it to predict how changes in diet might impact non-communicable diseases (NCDs) across entire populations. The aim is to encourage people not to lose weight to look hot but to switch to diets that protect them against serious diseases.