Obesity rates in the U.S. remain high and are edging higher in spite of more than a decade of warnings. The most recent CDC statistics show that more than one third of all U.S. adults are obese. Despite the growing evidence of health threats related to obesity, people struggle to control their weight for a myriad of reasons. Just as there is no single reason people develop obesity, there’s also no silver bullet solution to prevent or reverse weight gain. We’ve written about a wide range of tech claiming to help control weight, including neurostim products, bite counting, cold clothing, and more.
Klue Inc., based in San Mateo, California, focuses on artificial intelligence (AI) to impact health and wellness. The startup’s eponymous Klue wearable detects and learns user specific gestures related to eating and drinking behavior. Worn on the wrist, the device tracks movement, and over time the software creates what Klue’s founder Katelijn Vleugels calls a “personalized consumption graph.” The graph reveals insights based on hyper-personalization, meaning behaviors specific to the individual. Using the specific movements and gestures associated with eating or drinking, for example, the software can engage purposefully with the user in real time. Klue can coach, remind, nudge, and inform the user at times when behavioral intervention change could theoretically make the most difference. For example, Klue could track how much the user drinks before a meal, coach the user to slow down during meals, and prompt the user to log their food or stay hydrated after eating.
Klue is currently seeking development partners and key employees for the product launch. It would also make sense that this functionality might be added to existing smart watch designs. Real-time wristband prompts or reminders based on hyper-personalized gesture detection and eating or drinking behaviors likely would not be effective for all people who want to control their weight, but no single solution is the answer. This new health tech application that combines wearables and AI may someday take its place as one of the go-to weapons in the arsenal used to combat obesity.