Fitnescity at the MIT Healthcare & BioInnovations Conference

 Fitnescity presenting a poster at the  MIT  Healthcare and BioInnovations Conference. Photo at the  MIT Media Lab .

Fitnescity presenting a poster at the MIT Healthcare and BioInnovations Conference. Photo at the MIT Media Lab.

 

Fitnescity: The Case for Personalized Wellness. 

Over 80 percent of some of the most common and costly health conditions, such as type II diabetes and heart disease, could be prevented through lifestyle changes. U.S. consumers spend about $100 billion every year on physical-fitness and weight-loss interventions. However, most studies show that at least half of that amount is wasted on heavily marketed, one-size-fits-all products and services that do not necessarily lead to any measurable outcomes. For instance, more than half of gym memberships go unused.

Personalized wellness hold enormous promise for addressing the inefficiencies of one-size-fits-all solutions. Each individual has a different physiology, history, lifestyle and habits, so what works for one person might not work for another.

 

Personalized wellness is an approach that aims at providing recommendations and interventions based on each individual’s unique physiology and lifestyle data. Rather than relying on one-size-fits-all advice, it gets to know the individual’s wellness at the deepest level, leading to improved outcomes.

At Fitnescity, this approach takes the form of a data-driven, 360-view wellness-coaching program that uses a wide range of health and wellness devices such as wearables, wirelessly connected scales, glucometers, heart rate and blood pressure monitors, as well as 3D body scanners. Fitnescity uses these devices to collect a large set of physiological measurements. The company then integrates these biomarkers with the individual’s lifestyle data on nutrition habits, sleep patterns and stress levels —which are collected through online assessments. Fitnescity combines those data with the client’s medical history and health risks, forming its signature Fitnescity “Wellness Profile” for each individual.

The goal is to put in place a personalized wellness program that can effectively optimize the individual’s wellness and help prevent lifestyle disease. 

 Panel on Personalized Medicine - The  MIT  Healthcare and BioInnovations Conference. Photo at the  MIT Media Lab .

Panel on Personalized Medicine - The MIT Healthcare and BioInnovations Conference. Photo at the MIT Media Lab.

To that end, Fitnescity matches the client with a personal coach, who helps implement lifestyle changes in a customized, in-person 16-week program. The coach, who is responsible for most of the data collection, meets the client in-person about three times per week. Fitness training, nutrition counseling, and sleep and stress monitoring are all part of the service. The coach uses the client’s “Wellness Profile”, which includes a large set of interactive visualizations and visual analytics tools, to make personalized, informed decisions. This profile also enables the client to visualize progress, facilitating behavior change. At the end of the 16-week program, the client receives a detailed, fully transparent review of the program’s impact on their wellness.

 

An example of visualization tools designed by Fitnescity Labs is the 3D representation of the individual’s body shape (http://3d.fitnescity.com/). This tool, which is created through 3D body scanning, shows how the client’s body shape changes with exercise and diet. Often referred to as 3D fitness tracking, this novel technique provides not only 3D images of the individual, but also body measurements and segmental weight loss data. Beyond tracking, 3D body shape analysis is also used for behavior change, as it can show positive changes in the client’s body shape, as well as predictive representations of the individual’s future 3D body shape. 

  Elizabeth G. Nabel, MD , President of  Brigham Health  - The  MIT  Healthcare and BioInnovations Conference. Photo at the  MIT Media Lab .

Elizabeth G. Nabel, MD, President of Brigham Health - The MIT Healthcare and BioInnovations Conference. Photo at the MIT Media Lab.

Personalization is already part of our everyday life. For instance, services like Amazon and Netflix create effective client experiences by strongly emphasizing personalization. Regarding wellness, implementing lifestyle changes in an effective, engaging, personalized manner can mean the difference between chronic disease and health. Fitnescity aims to be at the forefront of that movement. 

 

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