Considering how they’ve already begun to play a role in detecting disease, Means believes there could be even more synergy between doctors and wearables in the New Year. “Our healthcare system needs to move away from a paradigm of largely reactionary treatment to a more proactive, preventative approach,” she says. “Wearables—coupled with intelligent software—will be a valuable part of this movement.”
Means also thinks we’ll see more development of biowearables that track internal biomarkers, like CGMs. “Having a miniature laboratory on your arm is not science fiction, it’s the near future.”
Beyond trackers and wearables, Maloof says we’re going to see more at-home labs and testing opportunities. “I’m pretty excited about devices like Vessel which tests urine for health biomarkers. Basically our home bathroom is going to become our mini lab.”
While the rise of micro-tracking is exciting and truly fascinating, it’s also important to acknowledge that even devices on the “less expensive” side aren’t accessible to everyone in our country—nor is everyone interested in wearing a device for body insights.
We also know it’s crucial listen to your own body and stay in tune with your senses—physically, emotionally, and spiritually. The tremendous amount of data these trackers and wearables produce can be overwhelming, in which case, take a break from your device or consider a more mindful relationship to it. These internal insights should be empowering and aid in understanding your own body, rather than augmenting a disconnect.
“Understanding how you feel when something is going wrong or right is critical,” says Brian MacKenzie, a human performance specialist, adding most people aren’t in touch with these feelings. To help gain insight, sans-tech, he recommends collecting your own data points by keeping a health journal. Take note of how you feel upon waking, after a workout, or even when you start to incorporate a breath practice.
Ultimately, how you decide to monitor your body and take care of your health is a personal choice—and there’s no one right strategy. Technology will always be in flux, but prioritizing your well-being should always be a constant.
This is just one of the trends mbg is predicting will be huge in 2021. Check out our full list of the latest health & wellness trends.