Accelerometer-Based Detection of Food Intake in Free-living Individuals

The goal of this pilot study is to evaluate the feasibility of using a 3-axis accelerometer attached to the frame of eyeglasses for automatic detection of food intake. A 3D acceleration sensor was attached to the temple of the regular eyeglasses. Ten participants wore the device in two visits (first, laboratory; second, free-living) on different days, reporting the food intake episodes using a pushbutton. Hold-one-out procedure was used to test the algorithm for food intake detection. The accelerometer signal was split into epochs of varying durations (3s, 5s, 10s 15s, 20s, 25s, and 30s); 152 time and frequency domain features were computed for each epoch. A two-stage procedure was used for finding the best feature set suitable for classification. The first stage used minimum Redundancy and Maximum Relevance (mRMR) to get the 30 top-ranked features and the second stage used forward feature selection along with a kNN classifier to get the optimum feature set for each hold-one-out set. The best average F1-score combined from laboratory and free-living experiments was 87.9 +/− 13.8% (Mean±Standard Deviation) for 20s epochs; and 84.7 +/− 7.95% for the shortest epoch of 3s. The results suggest that accelerometer may provide a compelling alternative to other sensor modalities, as the proposed sensor does not require direct attachment to the body and, therefore, significantly improves user comfort and social acceptability of the food intake monitoring system.
Wearable sensors, Food intake detection, Eating behavior