We can learn a lot from our sweat. This is an ideal way to have non-invasive wearable sensors on our skin rather than pricking ourselves for blood snapshots. Sweat monitoring provides a way to gather continuous real-time data.
What we could be monitoring in our sweat:
glucose (blood sugar)
lactate (muscle fatigue)
skin temp (necessary to calibrate the other sensors)
This would be particularly useful for athletes monitoring electrolyte loss and the effects of different supplements. Cystic fibrosis is already diagnosed today using sodium and chloride in sweat. With upwards of 60% of the US population being pre-diabetic or diabetic monitoring glucose and correcting insulin levels is highly desirable today. The applications are wide.
How do we monitor sweat? Well that becomes a involved process. There are several universities solving those problems and they are publishing the details. I particularly like the Nature paper line of “The more glucose or lactate in your sweat, the more electrical current is generated at the sensor’s surface. And the more sodium and potassium, the larger the voltage.” This offers up an option for the DIYer. We know how to monitor voltage and current.
8-6-2021 (August 6, 2021) is the Snakiest day of the year and it’s also this year’s CircuitPython Day! The day highlights all things CircuitPython and Python on Hardware. See you there!
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.