The wearable industry has seen an abundance of products hit the market that aim to help improve wearers’ lifestyles. These range from fitness trackers that monitor users’ activity, devices that can help with stress levels and pendants that can activate an alert in case of falls. There have been varying levels of acceptance over the effectiveness of fitness trackers, with some claiming that they don’t help users lose weight.
Now a new wearable device has been launched that its developers state can stimulate the brain to help users burn more fat. The Modius Headset was launched by neuroscience company Neurovalens on the fundraising website Indiegogo.
Digital Health Age spoke to co-founder and CEO and co-founder of Neurovalens, Dr Jason McKeown, to find out more about the company and the Modius Headset.
Could you tell me a little bit about Neurovalens?
Neurovalens is an independent wearable tech company founded by Dr. Jason McKeown and Dr. Paul McGeoch in 2013. We focus on developing solutions through technology that are useful, helpful, and safe for everyone. We utilise innovative neuroscience to improve people’s lives, which is what brought us to the development of the Modius. Neurovalens is currently run from dual-headquarters in Belfast, Northern Ireland and at the Centre of Brain and Cognition in the University of California, San Diego. The company’s mission is to use safe and effective technological advancements to make the struggle of weight loss easier for millions of people on a global scale.
How does Modius work?
There are ways to stimulate and activate the hypothalamus and we’ve found a non-invasive way by utilising a nerve that is very close to the skin, just behind the ear. The Modius headset works by stimulating this vestibular nerve with a low-level electronic stimulus sending a signal into the hypothalamus. By stimulating this repeatedly, (approximately every day or every other day) the user will lose body fat if they follow the device guidelines, with some people seeing significant weight loss. Of course, Modius will work best for those who incorporate it into a healthy lifestyle.
$499 is quite a lot for a wearable device, do you think people will be willing to pay that much for Modius?
I think people, once they see how effective the device is, and how it can change their lives, will recognise that it is good value. The best part is it’s the culmination of more than five years of research. Initially, we’re launching on Indiegogo on August 8 at half price: $249. We’re offering the discounted price because we want to get Modius in as many hands as possible so the first users can see for themselves and share their great success with others who will purchase in the future. We’re also offering a money back guarantee for our users who purchase the device during this campaign. They’ll receive their money back if they don’t see the results as promised.
Do you think the wearable health market has to go beyond simply monitoring users’ activity to have a real effect on peoples’ health?
Certainly! Fitbit or similar wearables would complement Modius quite well. However, the difference is that Modius is an active weight loss device, whereas Fitbit really just monitors the activity that you are doing. Our device actually addresses the fundamental problem that your brain controls body fat, and it really is a big differentiator for us. Wearable fitness devices don’t actually tackle this issue. By Modius focusing on the primary problem, all other things like diet and exercise become more effective. As a result, your appetite dies down, your metabolic hormones change, and you lose weight. It is actually a very natural thing because that is how your hypothalamus should work, whereas all other devices don’t really target this problem.
After the launch of Modius, what’s next for Neurovalens?
After our initial launch of the product via Indiegogo on August 8th we will move to a full consumer launch by the beginning of next year. We are developing other product applications that utilise neuroscience to integrate into effective functions for wearables, and the company has a full new product pipeline for the next five years. Stay tuned!