Fitness trackers have become hugely popular over the last few years, with lots of people – from gym bunnies to those just starting their fitness journeys – investing in them as a way to increase their exercise levels and monitor their progress.
There are certainly many benefits to having a fitness tracker, from recording your personal bests to monitoring weight loss. However, a report has recently been released that showed more and more Brits are becoming worried about the state of their health due to these artificial intelligence (AI) devices.
The Academy of Medical Royal Colleges released its ‘Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare’ document earlier this month, which examined the pros and cons of using technology in helping people stay healthy.
It stated: “While AI in healthcare promises great benefits to patients, it equally presents risks to patient safety, health equity and data security.”
The report went on to say that many people are flocking to their GPs, fearing their health is at risk because of results recorded on their trackers, such as their heart rate.
“The system [could become] overwhelmed by the ‘worried well’ who have arrived at their GPs’ surgery or the Emergency Department because they have erroneously been told to attend by their AI-enabled Fitbit or smartphone,” it stated.
This could also result in disparity regarding healthcare access in society, as wealthy people who can afford the best AI devices are more likely to have their health checked out compared with those who do not have money to buy tracking gadgets.
Indeed, the Mail Online recently reported a study commissioned by health insurers Vitality, which showed those who used a fitness tracker along with a reward scheme boosted their activity by 4.8 days a month, amounting to two years over their lifetime.
One of the best ways to improve your fitness is to use an online personal trainer, as they can provide tailored advice that suits your body, fitness levels and goals best.