SCiO is a pocket-sized food scanner tells you the amount of proteins, carbohydrates, fats in your food

In a world filled with health enthusiasts, there has been an increasing demand for companies to point out how many calories, nutrition and food contents an item contains. To make life easier for all of us-including companies-, an Israeli firm has created a handheld device that lets you know the nutritional value of the specific food item by simply pointing at it.

Admittedly, there are apps that can tell you how many proteins, carbohydrates, fats and water content there is in food. But they are manual; which means it takes a longer amount of time and it’s a difficult task. For the SCiO, you simply point the device at a specified food for 2-3 seconds and scan it. The sensor relays the information to your smartphone via Bluetooth within a couple of seconds.

So how does this amazingly useful contraption work? Well, by the use of Near-IR Spectroscopy, it analyzes the different interaction capabilities of molecules with light. Since various molecules of fats, carbohydrates or even protein vibrate in completely different manners they have their own unique optical signature when they are exposed to light. Basically, the scanner uses its inbuilt light to illuminate the food and it detects the reflected light-from the food-to determine the type and amount of various molecules present. Powered by an integrated battery, the Scio can provide up to one week’s worth of usage before it requires recharge.

Furthermore, they are enabling different companies to create their own apps so that they can work along with SCio. This means that an even larger amount of food types would be detected by Scio and many more materials could be put under analysis!

This pocket-sized device sounds pretty useful, doesn’t it? But that is not all it does! Apart from measuring macro nutrients in food, it can determine the spoilage amount of various vegetable, fruits, sauces, dairy products and even for oil! The scanner can also identify a type of pill by detecting its molecular makeup or even let you know when a plant needs watering!

At $249, the device seems pretty expensive. However if the company can pull it off it will be certainly worth the price!

References: Consumer PhysicsNew Atlas

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