The rise in obesity is a major public health concern in the United States with nearly 70% of the population now classified as either overweight or obese.
Researchers are actively exploring various avenues to combat obesity, with a particular focus on understanding as well as manipulating satiety (the feeling of fullness) to curb overeating.
MIT’s vibrating pill offers a minimally invasive way to treat obesity
Scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have developed an innovative vibrating pill, a pioneering creation designed to emulate the sensation of fullness and substantially decrease food intake. This groundbreaking pill is envisioned as an economical and non-invasive alternative for addressing obesity and other weight-related ailments.
The indigestible pill
Shriya Srinivasan, an MIT graduate student, explored the artificial stretching of the stomach lining. Through her research, she discovered that vibration could induce a perception of greater muscle expansion, creating a deceptive sense of enlargement and triggering the release of hormones.
Srinivasan collaborated with other researchers to create a pill, the size of a multivitamin with a vibrating element. When ingested, the gelatinous membrane dissolves in the stomach’s gastric juices, connecting the silver oxide battery to activate the vibrating element.
Animal Testing Shows 40% Reduction in Food Intake
The pill, successfully tested on animals, led to a 40 percent reduction in food intake. Programmed to vibrate for about 30 minutes in the stomach, it naturally exited the animals within four to five days.