«Food & You»

Track your individual response to food and help advance science

«Food & You»

«Food & You» is a large-scale citizen science research project in Switzerland. This project studies the individual response to food, that is, the blood sugar response (the level of glucose in the blood after a meal) variation among individuals.

Participants collect data about their blood sugar levels, diet, as well as sleep and exercise habits over the course of two weeks. The blood sugar level is monitored continuously by a small sensor on the participants’ arm. The app MyFoodRepo collects data on diet. The participants take pictures of their meals. The app then predicts the nutritional value of the meal. In addition to this, participants keep diary on their sleep and exercise habits. A stool sample is collected to measure the composition of the participants’ microbiome.

A copy of the collected data is uploaded to the participants’ personal data account on the MIDATA platform. This ensures that every participant has access to his/her personal data and that he/she can decide about further use in other research projects.

The study wants to use the collected data to advance the field of personalized nutrition. The study tries to understand the relationship between blood sugar levels and diet, sleep, physical activity and the influence of the microbiome. In future, this knowledge might enable making personalized predictions on the blood sugar response to food and using these predictions to make personalized diet recommendations.

Participate

Visit the website: www.foodandyou.ch

Video

Participation

Conception and Study Management

Pr. Marcel Salathé
Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne
Digital Epidemiology Lab
marcel.salathe@epfl.ch

Project Management

Chloé Allémann
Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne
Digital Epidemiology Lab

Study physician

Dr. Jardena Puder
University Hospital, CHUV, Lausanne
Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
jardena.puder@chuv.ch

App Development

Djilani Kebaili and Boris Conforty
Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne
Digital Epidemiology Lab

Project Partners

Created in memory of Kristian Gerhard Jebsen, the KRISTIAN GERHARD JEBSEN FOUNDATION aims to enhance the well-being of people and promote human and social development, through support of grantees in the areas of health, education, science, culture and environment, in Switzerland and abroad.
The Digital Epidemiology Lab at EPFL studies the effect of the digital transformation on healthcare systems. A special focus is on epidemiology, and how the widespread use of mobile and online technology can be leveraged to build better health systems.
The MIDATA data platform enables members of the public to compile their health records in a secure personal account free of charge and to determine if and how they are used in research projects. In this way, they can act as «citizen scientists», making an active contribution to medical research.
MIDATA serves as a data repository for its members and other participating members of the public. It is a non-profit cooperative facility that operates without offering financial incentives, similarly to blood donation services, for instance. The account holders are not paid for their intentional and voluntary «data donation». The revenue generated from the integration of their data into a scientific study is reinvested in the services offered on the platform and in a variety of smaller research projects. Start-ups, IT service providers and research groups can use the platform to offer mobile apps, such as health apps or apps for treating and monitoring patients with chronic illnesses. MIDATA is currently being used in a number of scientific health projects. In one particular project being conducted at University Hospital Zurich, for example, multiple sclerosis patients are being included in a study into the effect of treatments, which uses a tablet app to test their cognitive and motor skills. A further project, currently in development at ETH Zurich, will look at different training methods and the impact they have on muscle growth. More and more projects are being run that are directed at a wide section of the population and are of value to many – as is the case with the «Ally Science» project.

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