From all of us here at MDT, we wish our readers a very happy Thanksgiving!
Its checkered past notwithstanding, Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. It’s a time to bring family together, give thanks for all of the wonderful things going on in our lives, and most importantly, eat so much food that the waistband of our collective pants begs for mercy—then promptly pass out in a delicious food coma.
That said, there are many out there who have to keep a close watch on their turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie capacity for a variety of health reasons. But don’t fear! There are a whole host of technologies to be thankful for that help keep the inevitable Thanksgiving binge in check.
1. A Mobile App that Records Erratic Eating Habits
In order to objectively analyze the effects of timing food intake, researchers from the Salk Institute have developed an app to track food intake, created as a result of data collected from over 150 participants over three weeks. Users simply send pictures of everything eaten or drank, no matter how little. Location and time of each meal is recorded, and reminders are sent once a day to foster compliance.
The app could work wonders for personalized medicine—it revealed that almost two-thirds of participants took a nutritional supplement or vitamins, but the time these pills were taken varied. It also pointed out cultural eating habits and assisted those who wanted to adapt to time-restricted feeding.
You can download the app here to become a part of the study, if you’d like.
2. An Electronic Salt Spoon
Switching to a low-sodium diet isn’t as simple as cutting out table salt. It’s hidden in many household food items—and especially Thanksgiving food. Faculty from the University of Kentucky College of Nursing have developed an electronic spoon that measures the exact amount of salt in foods.
The pilot study found that those who used the salt spoon were successful in lowering the amount of salt in their diets. It can help patients re-train taste buds to enjoy foods with low sodium, and eventually help them to learn to cook and eat with smaller sodium portions. So if family members suffer from heart disease or hypertension—two conditions that require sodium in moderation—you might want to incorporate it into Thanksgiving dinner preparation!
3. The High-Tech Diet Pill
This is one you might want to pop in well before Thanksgiving dinner begins. Melcap doesn’t require a medical procedure to use; simply swallow and guide to the correct place with a magnetic sensor, activate, and monitor with a remote control or smartphone.
It works by electrically stimulating the stomach wall, giving a feeling of being full. The capsule remains in place long after Thanksgiving dinner (and even dessert) is over. It stays in the body for up to three weeks, then disintegrates and naturally leaves the stomach. (Be sure to check this out on The Pulse, as well!)
If you’re like me, consuming twice the daily recommended amount of calories on Thanksgiving is pretty much a tradition. Not that I recommend binge eating for any reason—but exercising self-control is difficult with a smorgasbord laid out in front of you, tantalizingly tickling my nostrils and making my mouth water. Maybe I should try one of these before it’s too late…