With the consumption of junk food rising with each passing day and people adopting poorer and poorer lifestyle choices, it is no secret that the problem of obesity has continued to fester and grow globally. In fact, over the last fifty years alone, researchers have found a 300% increase in the number of severely overweight individuals in the world — with the issue likely to get worse with each passing year.
Focusing on the United States, the prevalence of obesity among its adult population stands at a mind-boggling 42%. Not only that, severe obesity — i.e. individuals with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of more than 40 — has increased from 4.7% to 9.2% while the government’s total expenditure toward treating the problem scaled up to $173 billion (back in 2019).
The winds of change are here
With countries all over the world facing such a radical shift in their societal dynamics, there has been an emergence of innovative technological solutions looking to address the lingering problems emanating from sedentary lifestyles. The Move to Earn (M2E) model is one such innovation, incentivizing individuals to lead more active lives.
To elaborate, M2E systems offer a tangible bridge connecting the fitness industry with the rewards domain, offering clients incentives ranging from crypto assets to discounts to cashback deals for simply achieving their desired fitness objectives. Moreover, they also help reflect a broader trend toward personal empowerment and responsible consumerism.
To illustrate the rapid growth of this sector, several projects and communities can be highlighted thanks to their surging customer bases over the last couple of years. Sweat Economy, a move-to-earn ecosystem, is one such offering, presenting users with an on-chain crypto ecosystem and mobile app that facilitates the M2E reward model.
Since its market debut last year, Sweat Wallet, the Web 3 mobile app of Sweat Economy, has been able to accrue more than 7+ million users, boasting a monthly on-chain client base of 800k+. Sweat is routinely featured as a top-4 dApp on DappRadar, and its associated crypto token — $SWEAT — is the 9th most widely held and 13th most frequently used token within the Web3 sphere. Moreover, owing to the fact that the ecosystem’s applications Sweatcoin (Web 2 app) and Sweat Wallet (Web 3 app) are completely free to use, it offers crypto enthusiasts an ideal point of entry into this yet nascent space.
Built on the Near Protocol, Sweat Wallet has been able to quite quickly capture a big share of the M2E market, with the ecosystem’s presence being felt across the globe. In fact, the project is set to make inroads into the American market on September 12, following which users will be able to exchange their accrued $SWEAT tokens for various digital assets and incentives.
Other projects operating in this realm that have also been able to garner significant mainstream support include StepN, StepApp, and DotMoovs. Each of these applications comes with their own unique spin on the M2E framework; however, the underlying idea remains the same across the board.
Some challenges worth noting and future prospects
While there is no doubt that the M2E model is an extremely promising one, it does come with its fair share of challenges. For example, some data privacy enthusiasts have pointed out that the tracking of an individual’s daily movements can lead to unauthorized use and resale of this information. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that platforms operating in this realm implement robust security measures and adhere to data privacy regulations.
Moreover, the sustained viability of certain platforms like StepN is also a bit of a concern since the value of the rewards being supplied sometimes does not align with the cost of providing them. That being said, the M2E concept holds significant potential for growth and with the rapid growth of crypto and blockchain-enabled technologies in recent years, this market is poised for solid growth over the coming few years.