Researchers have developed an app that scans the barcodes of food items in the supermarket and warns you if it is not suitable for your body, based on your DNA. The app, which is called DnaNudge, can be installed on a smartphone or worn as an electronic bracelet-like device.
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The app can predict diabetes, heart disease and allergies to peanuts, and more, all based on the DNA of the user. It then discourages the user from buying food items containing these elements.
The DNA test is carried out using saliva and can predict if the wearer is sensitive to salt, fat, carbohydrates or caffeine. When the wearer shops at a supermarket, the device can scan the barcodes of the items and flashes red when the wearer picks up a food item that may prove dangerous. A green signal means that the food item is safe for the user.
DnaNudge and the corresponding wearable device has been designed and created by researchers at the Imperial College London, with support from Claire Murdoch, national director for mental health at NHS England and Chief Executive of the Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust.
Murdoch wants this device to be routinely prescribed by general practitioners. At present the device is undergoing trials in London on actual type 2 diabetics and those with certain mental health conditions.
It’s just well-known clinical evidence that if you’ve got the gene for cardiovascular disease or high blood pressure, you have to avoid salt. If you’ve got the gene for obesity then saturated fat is very important. If you’ve got the gene for type 2 diabetes then saturated fat and salt are culprits”.
Professor Chris Toumazou, Lead Designer of DnaNudge