For many individuals, maintaining an improved dietary regimen can be inordinately challenging. A recent study found that the vast majority of those using a run-of-the-mill weight-loss program eventually put back any pounds they’d initially shed. Part of the problem is that what constitutes a healthy diet for one person may be inadequate for another, due in large part to genetic differences from one individual to the next.
Enter personalized nutrition programs, which utilize information about an individual’s genetic and metabolic characteristics to design a bespoke plan comprising specific foods and supplements. As an alternative to conventional, one-size-fits-all strategies, personalized nutrition allows consumers to be more disciplined about maintaining a healthier dietary regimen, whether using wearable gadgets for monitoring weight, height, heart rate and other data, or taking advantage of emerging services such as genetic profiling and gut-microbiome testing.
In this Executive Insights, L.E.K. Consulting looks at the conditions favoring further expansion of an already vibrant field. Despite a number of obstacles (low consumer awareness, prevalence of one-size-fits-all solutions, etc.), the market for next-generation personalized nutrition is promising, as newer companies join the field and consumers are increasingly drawn to individualized nutritional goods and services. These factors bode well for food and beverage brands, nutrition supplement companies, grocery stores and others.