Weight Loss Industry Trends, Part 1
Some trends in the U.S. weight loss industry include weight loss moving towards non-traditional and retail channels and the emergence of a younger generation of dieters.
Weight Loss is Moving Towards Non-Traditional and Retail Channels
- Lately, more non-traditional channels are being used to reach weight loss dieters in the U.S., besides the utilization of commercial programs like Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, and NutriSystem.
- This trend also includes an increase in the quantity of in-store healthcare mini-clinics such as those being ran by Rite-Aid, CVS, etc.
- The trend is being driven by the need for retail partners and their competitors to modify their programs so that they are more convenient and to improve their exposure.
- Companies at the forefront of this trend include Sam's Club, Walmart, Amazon, the QVC, and Costco. Infomercials are also driving this trend.
Emergence of a Younger Generation of Dieters
- Another trend is the emergence of a younger generation of dieters who are adopting weight loss efforts centered on bypassing overly-processed foods and artificial sweeteners, eating clean, exercising, and convenience.
- The younger generation, which tends to have a limited income, also has a preference for diet plans that are affordable and convenient, as well as “wholesome” diet products.
- This trend is beneficial to diet apps and websites and OTC meal replacements. However, it harms costly structured programs, diet soft drinks, artificial sweeteners, and frozen entrees.
- The trend is being driven by the expanding volume of the country's largest cohort, Millennials, who are currently outnumbering Baby Boomers
- Millennials, as a population group, are at the forefront of this particular trend.
The Rise of Ketogenic Diets for Weight Loss
- This trend is characterized by more people eating high amounts of good fat, moderate amounts of protein, and very little carbohydrates.
- It is being driven by the need to cut carbohydrates from the diet, as well as the limitation of proteins. This eating process "depletes the body of glucose, forcing it to primarily burn fat and produce an alternate source of fuel called ketones."
- Normally, the ketogenic diet reduces carbohydrates to under 10% of all calories, while decreasing protein down to 20%. Meanwhile, the remainder consists of fat.
- KetoneAid is an example of a company that is at the forefront of this trend.
To identify some trends in the U.S. weight loss industry, we searched for news articles, press releases, and media publications on related topics. The rationale was to try to find something that people, companies, or other actors are recently doing more often, or less frequently, and involves a change in how things are done.
We searched through sources such as Forbes, New York Times, Shape, Fit, Business Insider, Fortune, and Bloomberg, among others, and we were able to find information repeatedly mentioned by news and expert articles, as well as those specifically identified by authoritative industry entities and other reports (e.g., Infiniti Research Company). Also, we identified the leading brands in the sector, including Sam’s Club, the QVC, and reviewed infomercials to see if many of them are doing something differently. With this strategy, we were able to determine some trends in the U.S. weight loss industry.