food:habits - a Calorie And Fat Tracking App Made For India

Jana Care is a social startup that works in the area of making affordable healthcare solutions available to people . Founded by Sidhant Jena and Michal Depa, Jana Care’s first invention is in the area of diabetes that plagues a large population in India. As part of their efforts, the company has launched an app called food:habits, which is an Android phone app that allows easy tracking of calorie and fat intake for Indian consumers.

food:habits was earlier launched as a companion app for their online group-based diabetes prevention program called Habits Program. As part of the program, pre-diabetic patients use food:habits to track their fat and calorie intake on their way to lose 7% of body weight which accorded to scientific research has shown to reduce diabetes risk substantially. But Jana Care realized the bigger potential the app had and now food:habits can be use by anyone who want to track their calorie and fat and not just pre-diabetics.

Talking about the app and the other equivalents in the markets, co-founder and CTO Michal Depa says, “food:habits is one of the few apps that works offline. 50% of smartphones in India don't have data connectivity and connection gets patchy when you travel or are inside buildings.” Users have to use the app for 16 weeks to get the desired results. The app also has a curated list of common foods in India that Jana Care has complied with the guidance of their research partners. Jana Care is looking to tap the 150 million diabetes and pre-diabetes market of India. They are currently targeting the urban middle class working population who form a majority of people at risk. Since launch last week, food:habits has seen about 200 downloads on Android.

Jana Care’s mission is to reverse the diabetes and obesity epidemic in the developing world through positive behavior change using mobile phones and the web. And to do this they have partnered with some of the leading diabetes and obesity researchers in the world at the Madras Diabetes Research Foundation, AIIMS, MassGeneralHospital and Narayana Hrudayalaya.

Sidhant says tracking the behavior change of their consumers is an exciting thing they do. “We might be interviewing patients in a hospital waiting room, follow them to their homes to understand their sugar patterns, and then in the evening coding something up to test-out a new design feature or develop new interactive content that might nudge them towards healthier lifestyles,” explains Sidhant. Jana Care is also working on a new hardware app that will help analyze glucose, lipids and hemoglobin. This app should be open for trails later this year in June.

Download the app here and read our review for the app.