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How AI is Personalising Nutrition to Support Diabetes

 
Personalisation technology and AI is helping inspire people with new, relevant ideas, removing friction from the process of shopping ingredients and even helping in the process of preparing and cooking food.

At this year’s GIANT Health Event that brings together innovators in the healthcare industry, our CCO Stuart Renshaw shared how AI is personalising nutrition to support diabetes.

 
With studies showing that conditions like Type 2 diabetes can be managed more effectively with a more personalised view of recipe recommendations, pioneering health companies like Ascensia Diabetes Care who use Whisk’s technology to help people with diabetes will soon become the norm.

 

Why Personalisation Matters in Health

We all know that variety is the spice of life but in food and nutrition, we are just beginning to understand how vital it is to our health.

There are two main reasons why personalisation is crucial in helping people make healthier food choices.

First, the benefits of following a balanced diet rich in fruit and vegetables, avoiding fatty foods and getting a good mix of micro and macro-nutrients are well understood. But it now seems that our individual genomes and phenomes and even gut biomes can make two people respond entirely differently to precisely the same diet especially when it comes to blood sugar responses.

Second, eating a wide variety of foods, especially unprocessed, plant-based foods appears to be a great way to get a good balance of nutrients as well as encouraging a healthy gut biome.

Trying new, healthy, varied foods is not only about flavour and enjoying new experiences but very much about enjoying better health.

The reality is though, that while people watch hours and hours of programmes on food and baking and claim to want to try new dishes, the average household still cooks the same 6 or 7 recipes on repeat, week in week out.

So why, when people are so keen to try new foods and know that it’s essential for their health, do they find it so easy to get stuck in a rut?

 

Why Are People Stuck in a Rut When It Comes to Food?

At Whisk we believe that it’s been too hard to find the right recipe for all your family’s tastes and then to shop new ingredients so they are there when you need them.

If people shop on auto-pilot, the chances are they’ll always have the same foods in the cupboard when they come to cook and therefore they can only cook the same recipes they always do. Getting new ingredients on to a list is quite tricky.

As well as the shopping process, just finding a new recipe everyone likes, that fits their preferences and avoidances and that they can easily cook is complex and time-consuming – when it should be fun.

Once they are finally ready to cook something new, they face the worry that they’ll spend a lot of time cooking a new dish with expensive ingredients, just to have it rejected. And many aren’t ready to take that risk.

 

How AI Is Transforming Food and Health

With the advent of AI technology and the ability to process vast amounts of data, technologies like Whisk’s are just starting to break through and help people to convert inspiration to action delivering personalisation at a scale never before possible.

Whisk’s technology is now able to offer “personalised nutrition” at scale to support people managing a number of common conditions such as Diabetes.

By analysing and understanding over 1 million of the world’s most popular recipes and calculating their nutritional composition, we can find and recommend healthier recipes based on a user’s personal preferences. Users can also tailor the recipes they see based on tastes, cooking ability, time, budget, dietary preferences, weather, occasion and most importantly, health condition.

“We will combine data & technologies from Whisk & Ascensia to recommend recipes based on a person’s blood sugar values.”


– Stuart Renshaw, CCO of Whisk.com

Should anyone have a favourite family recipe they want to cook regularly, they can also add it to the platform, get it nutritionally analysed and share it with others easily.

Once they have a meal plan tailored to their individual preferences and needs, the next challenge is making sure they have all the ingredients when they need them.

Whisk’s shopping solution allows people to create a shopping list to take into the store at the click of a button. Even better for the time or cost conscious, they can add it to an online grocery cart to compare prices and get the products delivered or click and collect.

Health companies are realizing the value of partnering with technology companies to speed up the process and offer better and personalised experience that drives healthier food choices.

You can see our technology in action from a partnership with Ascensia Diabetes Care with whom we built the Contourfood.com website to support people managing diabetes or just trying to manage their weight.

The next evolution for Whisk will be to harness information in recipes to power the connected kitchen using instructions to switch on your oven or hob, bring it to temperature and remind you when it’s time to take it out.

Connecting up the whole kitchen to make it easier to plan and cook new, interesting and healthier foods is an exciting challenge and one that Whisk is relishing.

By removing friction from the complex process of finding new recipes and shopping for ingredients you can be confident you’ll like, helping people save time and money and simplifying the process of shopping for new ingredients, technology is set to help people eat more healthily and most importantly add more variety to spice up their lives.

Have questions about Whisk’s technology? Get in touch, we’d love to hear from you!

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