Fitbit to Warn of Oncoming Illnesses

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If you’re one of them millions of people who wear a fitbit every day, it may soon be able to warn you when you are getting sick.

Researchers looked at fitbit users in five states: California, Texas, New York, Illinois and Pennsylvania. They watched the users’ heart rate and sleep patterns and then used simple math track any changes.

Doctors have long known that a higher resting heart rate can be a sign that the body’s immune system is ramping up to fight off an illness. They also noted changes in a person’s sleep patterns.

Taking the fitbit’s ability to track both helped signal when a sickness is imminent. They say this research is particulary important during flu season.

The hope is to predict flu outbreaks daily to help keep it more under control. The study was partly funded by a grant from the National Institutes of Health.

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