Even if you drink eight glasses of water a day, you still might not be properly hydrated.
That’s the message Dr. Dustin Freckleton wants to get out to the public with a new product called the LVL band — a wearable fitness tracker that uses infrared light to monitor your hydration levels in real-time and offer advice about how much water you need to stay healthy.
“Everybody understands very strongly how important hydration is,” says Freckleton, who was inspired to create LVL band after suffering a severe hydration-related stroke when he was in medical school.
In the same way your eye uses incoming light to create a visual image, the LVL band shines near-infrared light into your body, which then comes back to the band in the form of a spectroscopic image — essentially a fingerprint from inside your bloodstream. Software in the band analyzes that information to measure specific biometrics, like heart rate and hydration level.
Throughout the day, the LVL band gives wearers a small vibration to notify them when their hydration levels are getting low. A smartphone app that accompanies the band offers an estimated dehydration level, say “18% dehydrated,” and advises you to drink a certain amount of water accordingly.
Over time, Freckleton says, the app will learn when you tend to exercise and go to bed and calibrate its recommendations based on those behavior patterns. For example, you might get a notification encouraging you to drink 12 ounces of water two hours before your regular workout time, so that you’re in the best state possible to exercise.
Later that night, you might get another notification reminding you to drink 10 ounces before bed, to keep you hydrated as you go 6-8 hours without water.
The LVL brand is a great approach to tackling dehydration especially in our current world in which everyone is on the go and constantly moving. The design of it being watch offers accessibility due to its small and portable nature. It also plays on available technology that would be able to access the individuals vitals and body information. It also offers a connected smartphone app which is something I would to explore in my personal research considering the fact that many people have access to some type of cellular device. The user interface of both the app and watch is also very clean and efficient for the issue it’s solving.