When it comes to losing weight, a lot of us just want to be told what to do. That’s why we go to a spin class, or follow specific diets. Lumen is a startup that wants to make that type of advice more personalized for you with a handheld breathalizer that measures your metabolism.

The eponymous Lumen device looks (sadly) like a vape pen. Blow into it and the device measures the CO2 of your exhale to see if you are burning carbs or body fat. According to the promotional video, you can breathe into Lumen in the morning to get a personalized meal plan for the day, adjust that meal plan with breath check-ins throughout the day, and check your breath before a workout to see if you need to carb up for additional energy.

The results, according to the site, are sustainable weight loss and optimized workouts.

Lumen launched an Indiegogo campaign to fund its eponymous device. It has already blown past its $50,000 goal, raising $213,816 with a full month left to go. Early birds can pick up a Lumen for $199, after that the price jumps to $219. Devices are estimated to ship in February 2019.

The Lumen site has an entire section on the science behind its device. We can’t validate the company’s claims here, but the idea behind Lumen fits in with two trends we’ve been following here at The Spoon: handheld analyzing devices and personalization.

With technology getting more powerful and smaller, there is a crop of new devices coming to market to help us better understand what and how we are eating. The Nima sensor helps consumers detect the presence of peanuts or gluten in foods to help avoid allergens. And the SCiO uses spectrometry to scan food for nutritional information.

All these personal devices aim to help people make better choices when eating. Personalization has become a hot topic at our Smart Kitchen Summits: companies like FoodPairing are creating tools for hyper-personalized recipes, and further out, Intellectual Ventures has a patent for a personalized food manufacturing system. They’re also eyeing a future where 3D printed foods deliver the exact food we want to fit dietary and nutritional needs.

If Lumen works as promised, getting personalized meal recommendations and losing weight is not something you’ll need to hold your breath for.

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