Dieters are used to measuring and even weighing their portions, but a new portable, computer-linked, electronic plate scale takes food intake monitoring to a whole new level.
The scale, called a Mandometer, was developed by Swedish scientists at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm and actually speaks to diners, alerting them when they are eating their food too quickly.
The Mandometer consists of an electronic scale designed to fit under a plate and a small screen. The scale weighs the food as the meal is being consumed and the screen depicts a graph that indicates the rate at which the food is disappearing from the plate. This “ideal graph for food consumption” was programmed by a food therapist. As soon as a diner deviates too much from the ideal graph, he or she is subjected to a spoken request from the computer to slow down.
The idea behind the Mandometer is to train overweight people to eat more slowly so that they will feel satiated sooner and eat less, thereby losing weight.
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An 18 month study conducted by researchers at the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children in Britain has indicated that the Mandometer is an effective tool to combat obesity in children and teens. The team tested 106 clinically obese patients ranging in age from nine to 17 years old. Some of the patients had to use the Mandometer while the others received standard anti-obesity treatment. All of them were urged to practice some form of physical exercise for 60 minutes a day and to follow a healthy diet.
The results of the study were published in an article in the British Medical Journal. When participants were assessed a year into the study, the Body Mass Index (BMI) of the group who had used the Mandometer had fallen by an average of 2.1%, which is about three times more than the group who had received the standard treatment. At the end of the study 18 months later, those results still held steady.
The group who had used the Mandometer was also eating smaller portions of food (about 45 grams less than before) by the end of the study.
The race to slow down was also won by the Mandometer group. At the end of the study, their eating speed had been reduced by about 11%, while the standard care group was eating 4% faster.
With such positive results, we’re certain that there are many diners out there who won’t mind sharing their tables with the scolding scale.
Via Digital Life