May 13, 2015
Finnish Kickstarter company Caktus has reached success in the US by creating a new water-intake tracking sensor and app called THE+HUG. This device, which looks similar in size and shape to a FitBit bracelet, wraps around a water bottle and sends information via Bluetooth to a smartphone app.
The app logs water intake and tells the user how much water he or she needs based off of age, height, weight, temperature of surrounding climate, and exercise. It sends push notifications when the person should be drinking more water, and stores a user’s hydration history so each person can see their progress.
A group of designers, founders, and engineers headed by CEO Panu Keski-Pukkila (also known as the “Thirsty Team”), came together to create a device that would stop problems linked to dehydration. “Panu, a fitness fanatic himself, came up with the idea for The Hug after too often feeling tired and run-down. Others, he soon realized, suffered from a range of problems associated with dehydration, too, including dry skin, tension, bad moods, and even kidney stones,” according toTechCrunch.
This relatively new invention was first released on Kickstarter in 2013, and since then the creators have moved past Kickstarter and are completing trials with medical researchers. It is only currently available to fitness specialists by request, but they have plans to release it to the public in in the near future. The paired app is currently only available for iOS Apple products through the Apple Store.
Many students struggle to find time to hydrate in between classes, causing them to suffer from minor to severe dehydration. According to CBS, “most people know that they are supposed to drink water, but up to 75 percent of Americans may be functioning in a chronic state of dehydration, according to new research.”
BSM health aide, Ms. Sharon Ingalls, sees many cases of sickness that are caused primarily by students neglecting water. “[Dehydration is] a catch all. You can be dizzy, nauseous, body aches. Athletes get cramping which can be connected to dehydration,” Ingalls said.
Some may think that a few sips from the drinking fountain or one regular sized water bottle is sufficient. But, since our bodies are made up of 60 percent water, it needs to be replaced throughout the day. “They always use to say eight to ten glasses a day. A yoga instructor [told me that] you should drink half your bodyweight in ounces per day,” Ingalls said.
Although this futuristic device could be helpful to those who have problems staying hydrated or athletes preparing for game day, this problem could also be solved by simply drinking water throughout the day.
Photo credit: Chase Mouser