Thin Ice vest

When it comes to getting healthy, one thing that almost all of us can do is lose a little extra weight. And lots of companies are ready to offer wearable Health Tech devices that are intended to help make this easier for you. Some of them are a bit unusual, such as the Thin Ice 2.0.

This is a smart vest that actively cools your body. As your body cools, it attempts to maintain its normal temperature (thermoregulation). This naturally requires your body to generate more heat; more heat requires more energy, and your body will consume calories to provide this energy. It’s pretty basic stuff, but the idea is that the Thin Ice vest will chill your torso just enough — but not too much — to encourage additional energy consumption. If you maintain the same food intake, you will lose weight. The company’s website (on the Fundrazr crowd-funding service) says that you can wear it unobtrusively under your normal clothes, and you can use a smartphone app to adjust the degree of cooling. Looking at the drawings, it looks as though the vest was modeled after Tony Stark’s Iron Man, complete with a hexagonal unit protruding from the chest.

This project might be more impressive if the company hadn’t already raised nearly $600,000 on Indiegogo for Thin Ice 1.0 last September, but still has not shipped. It’s also not clear what the benefits of the vest are that couldn’t be achieved simply by taking off a sweater, or sleeping without a blanket. For a lot less than the couple hundred dollars price for the vest, you could also get a bunch of freezer packs and stuff them under your shirt. It makes sense to try to make your body run hotter, but there must be easier ways than wearing a little refrigerator on your chest. It will be interesting to see if this newer design ever ships, and if so, what the consumer reaction is to the device.