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November 24, 2016

First wearable vitamin D coach by e-Senses and Holst Centre

Together, the Dutch start-up e-Senses and Holst Centre have developed the Helios smart ring. The ring is the first wearable vitamin D coach helping people with a vitamin D deficiency. The ring makes it possible to track the amount of sunlight, daylight and vitamin D one absorbs a day.

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Over one billion people worldwide are vitamin D deficient. A changing lifestyle plays a large role; work and leisure are now mostly inside activities. Vitamin D however is essential for strong teeth, muscle tissue and bones. It helps preventing cancer as well. Humans main source of vitamin D is the sun, making an indoor lifestyle less than perfect. Sunlight also has a proven positive effect on immune systems and mental and physical health. Enjoying the sun is however like balancing a tightrope; too much of it and the UV radiation become dangerous. The Helios smart ring helps finding that balance.

Smart ring

E-Senses industrial Dutch designer Albert-Jan van Dijk designed a ring with a timeless design. The ring tracks the exposure of the wearer to sun- and daylight. It also tracks the amount of created vitamin D. The ring calculates this using a profile in which the wearer has to choose their skin type. The wearer also has to indicate how much sunscreen he or she wears and what types of clothes are worn. This information is used to calculate the amount of created vitamin D.

The Helios app

The ring is connected with an app on the users phone. This app contains a personal vitamin D, sunlight and daylight coach. The vitamin D coach shows how much vitamin D the user consumes each minute, day, week, month or year. The coach motivates through notifications and encourages the wearer to consume as much vitamin D as possible without getting a sunburn.

The daylight coach calculates the minimal amount of daylight the wearer needs and shows in percentage how far you are. You can also check how long you have to spend outside to reach 100%. This coach motivates the wearer to step outside more. The app shows a day-, week-, month- and year-overview of this data as well.

The sunlight coach measures the strength of the sun. It shows the UV-index, wherever and whenever. Here you will find how long you can stay outside without experiencing harm from the sun. In a separate sunscreen menu the wearer can indicate whether sunscreen was used that day. Here is it possible to check the amount of hours spent in the sun, daily, weekly, monthly and annually.

Collaboration between e-Senses and Holst Centre

Holst Centre brought their experience when it comes to miniaturization of electronics into the partnership. The company supported e-Senses in researching technological options. This gave Dutch start-up e-Senses the chance to realise their innovative idea.

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