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NAO Robots Could Help Reduce Obesity

Update Date: Feb 22, 2017 06:16 PM EST

Robots are becoming useful in the healthcare industry. One example of a healthcare robot is the Script Pro robot designed that help to fill prescriptions in pharmacies and consists of medications or oral solids in pill form. Another example of healthcare robot is the McKesson's Robot RX that is capable of helping pharmacies in dispensing thousands of medications daily with little or no errors.

But what if there's a robot that could help a person to lose some excessive weight? According to GIZMODO, a Queensland University researcher named Nicole Robinson is conducting the first ever Australian study on creating a robot that could have a positive influence on a person's eating habits.

Robinson is a PhD student with QUT's Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation and Faculty of Health. She shares her office with knee-high and adorable NAO robots.

These NAO robots are named Andy and Rob and will pay a vital role in Robinson's research. They will be designed to conduct a conversation-like session with Brisbane participants ages 18 years old and up who are fond of eating snacks and drinking liquids that are high in fat and sugar.  

The participants in the research will do an online application to see whether they can take part of the study. Chosen applicants will do three online surveys - one at the beginning, a second after four weeks and the last survey will be done after eight weeks.

People who would be part of the research will be asked to attend a one-hour session twice with the NAO robot at South Brisbane or QUT's Kelvin Grove campus. They will also be asked to watch the video session showed by the said robot. At the end of the finale session, participants will be interviewed about their experiences with the NAO robot.

From 2014-2015, 63.4 percent of adults were considered obese or overweight, as per International Business Times. Australian Bureau of Statistics also stated that one in four children ages 5-17 were obese or overweight. If this study will become a success, the statistics of overweight people will possibly be reduced.

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