Even if You're Not a Tattoo Lover, These Health-Tracking Tattoos Could Change Your Mind

Proactive Health

By Joy Stephenson-Laws, JD, Founder

Tattoos are a form of art and self-expression. And according to Johnny Depp, “[m]y body is my journal, and my tattoos are my story.”

Tattoos also have sentimental value, as they may honor a loved one who has passed or celebrate a personal achievement. It’s not uncommon for women who have had mastectomies to get tattoos where their breasts were removed in order to empower themselves and celebrate surviving cancer. People have been getting these body markings for thousands of years. Types of tattoos and techniques by tattoo artists have evolved over time, and now it may not be long until tattoos have a prominent place in the healthcare field.

Soon your tattoo may not only celebrate you as an individual but also track your individual health needs.

Called the DermalAbyss project, medical students at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard Medical School are collaborating to develop health-tracking tattoos. The students created a type of tattoo ink with biosensors that changes colors when glucose and pH levels fluctuate inside the body.

The pH sensors change between purple and pink, and the glucose sensors change between blue and brown.

So far, the tattoos have only been tested on pig skin and are awaiting human trials, but researchers are hopeful and say the results look promising.

If these health-tracking tattoos become safe and available to humans, this could drastically improve the quality of life for diabetics. On a daily basis, diabetics have to prick their skin with a needle multiple times in order to monitor their glucose levels. If diabetics could have a glucose monitoring tattoo, all they would have to do is look at the color of their tattoo. This would make it easier to travel, cause less interruptions during working hours and be less painful.

We addressed pH and its relevance to our health in an earlier blog. In order to test your body’s pH level, you can pick up test strips at your local drug store. These strips test your saliva and urine, and the tests need to be done first thing in the morning to get accurate readings.

Most of us probably do not currently know our pH level. Our mornings are so hectic, testing our pH is probably the last thing on our minds! If you had a small tattoo indicating your pH level with changes in color, this may be much easier and maybe more convenient.

Keep in mind, you can eat certain foods to help maintain healthy pH levels. Certain minerals help balance acidity levels in the body including:

  • Calcium. You can get calcium from salmon, turnip greens, kale, broccoli and more.
  • Magnesium. Dietary sources of magnesium include leafy green vegetables (like spinach), legumes, nuts, seeds and whole grains. Foods with fiber are also good sources of magnesium, and many cereals are fortified with it.
  • Potassium. High levels of potassium are found in figs, dried fruits (prunes and dates), nuts, avocados, bran cereals, lima beans, broccoli, peas, tomatoes, potatoes (especially their skins), sweet potatoes, winter squash, citrus fruits, cantaloupe, bananas and kiwi.

And let’s face it, sometimes it is difficult to get all the vital vitamins and minerals to maintain optimal pH levels. If you are lacking some of those critical nutrients, Proactive Health Labs recently joined forces with Metagenics to help make sure that if you are going to supplement you are doing it with products you can trust. You can visit http://phlabs.metagenics.com/store. A percent of your purchase will be offered as a donation to help provide everyone access to credible preventive health information.

Enjoy your healthy life!

The pH professional health care team includes recognized experts from a variety of health care and related disciplines, including physicians, health care attorneys, nutritionists, nurses and certified fitness instructors. To learn more about the pH Health Care Team, click here.


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