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Designing the healthy body of the future

Sophie Maxwell, Futures Director

Nature and tech converging to design the healthy body of the future

Health has become a top priority for so many of us now. We want to take responsibility and find ways to be more proactive when it comes to managing our own health. Increasingly we are looking for the most natural solutions to facilitate this ways to be more proactive when it comes to managing our own health. Increasingly we are looking for the most natural solutions to facilitate this and, through our new connections and sources of information, we now have access to more resources on a daily basis. Above all, an exciting new synergy between nature and technology is emerging and, as this convergence gains momentum, we are starting to see a new generation of brands and services tapping into this desire for optimisation of natural resources to control and boost our personal health.

One area of health currently gaining momentum is the growing awareness of the benefits of ‘helpful’ bacteria. And, in fact, the loss of good bacteria is even being named as a contributing factor to modern food allergies, asthma, obesity and diabetes. Daily probiotic drinks and yogurts have increasingly gained a following and you can even now get your daily dose from ‘good’ chocolate. But these serve us on a mass level with varying opinions on their true effectiveness. The key to really optimising health and effect in this way lies in finding a way to tailor a service that looks at the composition – and more importantly the needs and deficits – of our own microbiomes to create an effective dose for the individual.

And this is where a new breed of ingestibles, smart pills and broadband-enabled digital tools, is starting to revolutionise more specific targeting and access to new areas of health. EVN, conceived by the Pearlfisher Futures studio, is a new ideation concept inspired by this idea of achieving biological balance, with a concept centring around an ingestible bio-bot that helps us deliver, and then monitor, natural bacteria to allow each individual to achieve and maintain their optimum health.

By taking our information in a simple swab, the theory behind a concept like EVN is that it can simply determine our individual needs and biological and chemical composition and that these results are then used to create a ‘protozoa colony’, our own dose of specified natural bacteria. This colony would be encapsulated in an ingestible capsule called a ‘bio-bot’, a small and soft biological machine, which would then help us actively monitor and deliver natural bacteria to balance and maintain our bodies on a daily basis. The bio-bot would connect wirelessly to its user’s personal devices, allowing them to access its feedback and maintain the right balance. In this way the user has access to – and can display – a true picture of their internal health at any given time.

The advances in technology and knowledge of our health are helping us find new ways to access personal profiling and, from this, create a new, dynamic wellness industry that can be accessed and managed by individuals.

As these ideas and innovations continue to emerge, and this nature and tech convergence continues to grow and take shape, there is the very real potential to create breakthrough services and products to optimise future health – for both the individual and for society as a whole – on a much wider and far-reaching level.

Originally published on PSFK

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