Keyto has raised a $ 2.5 million funding round to market their personalized ketogenic diet program. The program includes a smart breathing sensor that detects when the body is in ketosis and a mobile app that provides diet and lifestyle recommendations to keep users on track.
The high fat, low carbohydrate ‘keto’ diet is based on ketosis, a metabolic state in which the body burns fat for energy when it does not have enough carbohydrates in food. It has become popular in recent years as a weight loss strategy and is sometimes prescribed for children with epilepsy to prevent seizures. But it can be difficult to tell if the body is in ketosis.
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“A rudimentary way to estimate whether a person is approaching ketosis is to carefully track and measure food intake, but this is largely a matter of guesswork,” said Gareth Everard, marketing manager. from Keyto, in an email.
When the body enters nutritional ketosis, the liver makes ketones from fatty acids and releases them into the bloodstream. These can be detected as a good indication of a person’s metabolic state, but the traditional methods of doing this are not perfect. They include “urine strips, which are messy and inaccurate, or blood tests, which are painful and expensive,” Everard said.
And that’s where Keyto comes in. Its sensor detects acetone, a byproduct of ketone production, in the breath. Users breathe into the device, which sends the result to the mobile app, where it is displayed as a “Keyto level”.
In addition to quantifying a user’s ketosis, the app also offers personalized meal plans and lifestyle reminders, as well as educational materials and access to a social community. The portability of the breath sensor means that users can use it on the go and get real-time results, unlike urine or blood tests.
The seed funding will support R&D for Keyto’s gas nanosensor and expand the company’s manufacturing capabilities. The company offers the program on Indiegogo, where it’s available for pre-order for $ 99. It will start shipping the breath sensor to customers in January.
“The ketogenic diet is a sensation right now, as the most searched diet on Google,” Everard said. “We are expecting an overwhelming demand, so we have decided to launch Indiegogo, the cheapest in the world for the first time we handle the delivery process and give ketogenic diet enthusiasts quick access to our revolutionary product at an exceptional price before a full commercial launch in January.
Editor’s Note: This story has been updated to correctly attribute the quotes to Gareth Everard.