|Photo by: TeroVesalainen via Pixabay|
A team of researchers from Massachusetts’ Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Michigan Technological University, Skidmore College, and the University of Massachusetts Medical School has presented a new health app that helps a person combat obesity and overeating.
Considering that obesity is one of the top health issues affecting the world, the team presents a new mobile app along with an intervention system that will make it less of a burden on users to lose weight. The team describes the app and intervention system as the SlipBuddy system.
According to the team, the SlipBuddy System provides three approaches to overeating. First, the app requires the users to log the times they believe they have overindulged. Second, it collects data as to what triggers the unhealthy behavior of the user, including commuting, socializing, and watching TV. Third, the app offers a suggestion of healthful activities that will prevent the person from overindulging.
WPI’s associate professor and author of the study Bengisu Tulu explained that there are already various weight loss apps on the market but without enough data from psychologists and clinical psychiatrists. With their study, Tulu shared that they have incorporated clinical tools. Another author of the study, Carolina Ruiz, said that their aim is to make it an interdisciplinary project to push beyond the normal boundaries of obesity research.
Ruiz adds that they have used machine learning algorithms in order to provide the predictive patterns of a human behavior. This, Ruiz said, allowed their app to provide evidence-based, user-centric, and personalized approaches when it comes to overeating.
The team shared that the app may be available for iOS and Android in 2019 after they continue to more extensive research in 2018.