For people who have hypertension and certain other conditions, eating too much salt raises blood pressure and increases the likelihood of heart complications. To help monitor salt intake, researchers have developed a flexible and stretchable wireless sensing system designed to be comfortably worn in the mouth to measure the amount of sodium a person consumes.
Based on an ultrathin, breathable elastomeric membrane, the sensor integrates with a miniaturized flexible electronic system that uses Bluetooth technology to wirelessly report the sodium consumption to a smartphone or tablet. The researchers plan to further miniaturize the system — which now resembles a dental retainer — to the size of a tooth.
“We can unobtrusively and wirelessly measure the amount of sodium that people are taking in over time,” explained Woon-Hong Yeo, an assistant professor in the Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology. “By monitoring sodium in real-time, the device could one day help people who need to restrict sodium intake learn to change their eating habits and diet.”
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