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December 19, 2019 2:28 pm

Israeli Company Looks to Digitize Diet Tracking and Vitamin Intake With Smart Dispenser

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Nutricco’s countertop Smart Dispenser. Photo: Courtesy.

A new cloud-based countertop smart device developed in Israel will dispense personalized nutrition supplements based on data it receives from a diet tracking app.

After analyzing the data tracked in the app, Nutricco provides supplement recommendations, which are then automatically delivered to the customer’s home as part of a monthly subscription.

“The idea is not to promote supplements, but to encourage users to have a complete diet,” Nutricco’s CEO and co-founder Leonid Pirogovsky told The Algemeiner. “We are providing the tools for smart decision making.”

Nutricco, founded in 2018 and based in Ra’anana, has three components: a diet and health tracking application, a countertop Smart Dispenser and a monthly supplement subscription. That subscription includes expert health analysis, taking into consideration factors such as diet, climate, and lifestyle, as well as monthly supplements. The technology was a finalist at this year’s FoodTechIL competition in Tel Aviv.

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“Based on your lifestyle profile, we recommend how to create a nutritional balance,” Pirogovsky said.

While Nutricco does not seek to promote nutritional supplements over a healthy diet, there are many who consume them in an uninformed or unhealthy way.

“About 160 million people take supplements daily,” Pirogovsky noted, “and many don’t know exactly what they are taking or why.”

The market today is controlled by supplement consumption, he said, which can not only be dangerous, but a waste of money.

The app first provides recommendations for a healthy diet, “and if that’s not sufficient, we offer solutions to close those nutritional gaps,” Pirogovsky said. “If you don’t eat fish, for example, we might recommend that you take omega-3 supplements.”

But, the app also provides government health department recommendations to avoid replacing essential diet components with pills. 

Chavi Kramer, a dietician and nutrition expert in Tel Aviv, acknowledged she was not against recommending diet supplements, “depending on the reason.” 

While Kramer would not recommend nutritional supplements to everyone, she said the personalized smart model of Nutricco certainly had potential, especially for those with dietary restrictions.

“I don’t believe that people should be going straight to supplements as a default, and ideally we should be obtaining these nutrients from food,” Kramer told The Algemeiner.

The members of the team behind the concept have backgrounds with some of Israel’s largest pharmaceutical companies, such as Teva, and noticed that while many diet-tracking apps were available, a personalized end-to-end solution was missing on the market.

“It is time for people to be able to manage their health and nutrition the same personal way they manage their bank account or any other aspect of their life, with innovative technology,” Pirogovsky told The Algemeiner.

In our day and age, said Kramer, people are using apps for literally everything including music, socializing, supermarket shopping and banking — so it makes sense that food and health have entered this realm as well. She added that digital health tools were empowering individuals to make their own decisions and enabling everyone to have access to certain information that was out of reach previously.

There are competitive products on the market, but Nutricco’s patented Smart Dispenser is unique in its ability to hold up to eight supplements and in their original packaging, and provide a personalized experience for more than one person simultaneously.

“Our machine is designed for the user,” said Pirogovsky.

Still, Kramer explained that users needed to be cautious in selecting the right tools as some of these may be based on incorrect information, and the constant access to nutrition information and diet tracking could result in obsessive behavior.

Nutricco will launch its three-component platform in January at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas alongside the Israeli Export Institute, where it will announce the high-profile supplement providers it has partnered with to provide the last step in their end-to-end model.

With an initial launch in the US, the price of the Smart Dispenser will be $399, and the subscription for personalized analysis and supplements will cost $50 per month.

Down the road, Pirogovsky hopes Smart Dispensers will not only be in homes all over the world, but in public spaces like offices and gyms.

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