Cambridge, MA-based InsideTracker is already building a stand-out client list, which includes Olympians, players and coaches from the big pro sports in the US, and serious amateur athletes, all of whom are drawn to the company’s personalized nutrition and lifestyle interventions based on a simple blood test of select biomarkers.
“Personalization is the future,” Sellam told NutraIngredients-USA, “and that’s the premise that gave the idea to the company.”
“The one size fits all intervention approach makes no sense. We need to personalize and customize the intervention.”
Unlike other personalized nutrition companies, InsideTracker is only interested in blood. The company does not perform genetic tests.
“Blood is liquid gold in understanding how our bodies work,” said Sellam. “Blood is beautiful. It changes on a regular basis whereas genetics don’t.”
While the current concept of using blood tests to evaluate health is for a doctor to assess if you have normal or abnormal values, InsideTracker is interested in optimal levels.
“There is a tremendous amount of evidence to allow us to understand if I am optimal for certain biomarkers,” said Sellam, “and the ones we’re interested in are those linked to health, longevity, and physical performance.
“We focus on the biomarkers that can be influenced by nutrition and health.”
Inside vs outside
Consumers are currently being bombarded by companies offering all kinds of tracking, most notably companies offering wearable technology companies with sensors or trackers. Such technology is based on “outside tracking”, said Sellam. “It may be interesting, but it’s a summary of what you’ve already done. We’ll tell you the future. We’ll tell you what you need to do if you want to climb Mount Everest.”
And this is where the future is heading, he said, with people set to focus more on tracking the inside rather than the outside. The ability to obtain data is also becoming easier and easier, he said, which will facilitate this shift.
“In three years you’ll be able to pee, spit, and bleed on to your iPhone and it will tell you all about your insides.”
The company was founded by Gil Blander, who spent five years at MIT and has done extensive research into biological markers in the blood. And it’s not just stars of track and sports field that are associating themselves with the company: InsideTracker’s scientific advisory board reads like a who’s who of the best researchers of nutrition and aging in the US, including Prof David Sinclair from Harvard Medical School, Prof Jeff Blumberg from Tufts University, Prof Lenny Guarent from MIT, and Prof Roger Fielding from Tufts University.
The result of all this brain power is a portfolio of different tests and science-driven nutrition and lifestyle interventions that empower people to optimize their markers.
The Performance test, which includes 20 biomarkers and is priced at $299, is the company’s best seller and flagship product, said Sellam. A smaller test, called Fitness, covers 12 biomarkers and costs $149. (see image right