food4future SERINA Study

Human study to determine nutritional status by using non-invasive methods

Scientists usually determine the nutritional status of a person by measuring the concentration of nutrients such as fats, vitamins and minerals in the blood. This procedure has the advantage that it provides very accurate values. The disadvantage, however, is that this method is invasive and blood sampling may only be performed by trained medical personnel.

In the SERINA study, we therefore investigate the extent to which non-invasive sensors in combination with an app are able to accurately record a person's nutritional status. The aim is to be able to replace invasive methods such as blood sampling to some extent in the future.

A good nutritional status is characterised, among other things, by the sufficient consumption of fruit and vegetables. Many fruits and vegetables contain a high level of fat-soluble pigments, so-called carotenoids, which give them their characteristic colour. Carotenoids are stored in the upper layers of the skin and can be detected there with the help of sensors.

The human studies have already been carried out and are now completred. The data from the studies is currently being analyzed. 

Figure: The SERINA study is investigating whether the fat-soluble micronutrients carotenoids can be detected with non-invasive skin sensors and whether a special app is just as reliable as by means of blood tests. Copyright: headland for food4future (modified).


The SERINA study is conducted together with our food4future partners at the German Institute of Human Nutrition (DIfE).

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