Having trouble sticking to your diet? Maybe its time to buy some jewelry.
Scientists at UCLA recently developed a necklace that monitors your eating habits and tells you when you're going overboard.
The necklace, called the WearSens (and nicknamed the “diet choker”) has a piezoelectric sensor that tracks the vibrations in your neck to determine when you're eating and drinking.
If the vibrations continue for too long, the necklace — paired with a smartphone app — buzzes to notify you that you're overeating, which it determines based on each user's personal statistics, including height, weight and age.
The sensor is, in fact, so sophisticated it can not only tell when you're eating, but what you're eating: Each different type of food creates different vibration patterns when traveling down the esophagus.
In tests, the WearSens had a 90 percent success rate when distinguishing between hard foods and a 75 percent rate when dealing with soft foods.
It even tells the difference between hot and cold drinks.
Paired with the app, the necklace will also notify you when you're over your recommended calorie limit, and if you've been eating too much of one specific food.
Founder Majid Sarrafzadeh explained,
Many nutrition methods are based on writing down what you eat. But this method has low compliance, so we wanted to overcome these issues and wanted to do something that a pedometer does for activity.
The developers think the sensor could help on other fronts as well, by tracking a sick user's medication intake, for example, or aiding in smoking cessation efforts.
The prototype will soon be tested for FDA approval.