Meet Luka Zupančič, inventor of Easycarb
“My advice to everyone would be just keep an open mind. Try to find that one thing, that one cause that really drives you.”
SABRINA: Hello Splice, I am here with Luka Zupančič, a researcher in the field of regenerative medicine. Hi Luka. You have started your own business recently. What is it about?
LUKA: Hello Sabrina! We built a business with intention to help diabetics track their carbohydrates.
“Carbohydrate management is in fact extremely important. It is the most important factor in developing long term complications of diabetes.”
SABRINA: Why did you decide to go from research to business?
LUKA: Basically because diabetes matters, it is important. It is the fastest spreading disease of our time and to manage diabetes it is really a hassle, actually. You need to have your diet under control, you need to know the amount of carbohydrate that you eat, you need to administer appropriate doses of insulin and basically keep your blood sugar at normal levels all the time. But what is interesting is that recent studies conducted by the American Diabetes Association and FDA and some independent organizations as well show that carbohydrate management is in fact extremely important. It is the most important factor in developing long term complications of diabetes. And working with diabetics before we knew that this kind of good carbohydrate management was not being done properly, not even close to that. There are many reasons behind this, but the main one is that the current gold standard to manage your carbohydrate is extremely outmoded and extremely inefficient. And we decided to make a change and to modernize this process.
SABRINA: How does this process look like by managing your carbohydrates nowadays?
LUKA: To put it simply, you have to first determine the amount of carbohydrates in the meal that you are about to eat. The second step is to calculate the corresponding insulin values that you need to administer to your body. And then the third step is to log everything, to keep everything in your notebooks and then to show it to your physicians who can then decide on what treatment you are going to take.
“We developed an app for smartphones together with a bundled portable scale for food weighing which together provides the users with accurate and immediate values of carbohydrates in their meal.”
SABRINA: So how do you want to make this process better? What do you do?
LUKA: The concept behind our project was to modernize the whole thing. We live in an era where everything is made digital, all information is available at your fingertips, right? And we said, this process should also be done like that. For that reason we developed an app for smart phones together with a bundled portable scale for food weighing which together provides the users with accurate and immediate values of carbohydrates in their meal.
SABRINA: This project is still an ongoing process, right? So, where are you now?
LUKA: That’s true. We’ve currently finalized our development and our research and we are basically focusing on the production right now. But because we want to make this app, which is also a standalone tool, completely free of charge for everyone, we are starting a crowdfunding Indiegogo campaign in September.
SABRINA: A researcher going to business is kind of a bold decision. So, can you give an advice to all the people out there which have an idea?
LUKA: Yes, sure. My advice to everyone would be just keep an open mind. Don’t feel that you have to do the things that you are supposed to do, the things they teach you at University. Sure, for some people that’s the right way to go. But it is not necessarily for everyone. Try to find that one thing, that one cause that really drives you. Because at the end it is about doing the things you love, right? Not about doing the things you are supposed to do.
SABRINA: So for the end Luka, this project we were talking about: how is it called and where can I learn more about it?
LUKA: So, our project is called Easycarb and I would like to invite you all to check it out at easycarb.org or also check it out on social media like Facebook, Google+, Twitter. Just type in Easycarb and we are the first page there.
SABRINA: Thank you Luka and good luck with your project!
LUKA: Thank you very much for the opportunity.