With the growing frustration over healthcare costs and confusion over everything from what’s actually covered to deductible levels and co-pay amounts, concierge medicine is gaining popularity as an option that allows consumers to take greater control of their own health. Many of these practices perform detailed blood work and lab panels to determine a regime specific to the actual patient as opposed to a one-size-fits-all, cookie cutter approach. It’s the difference between taking a multivitamin versus taking several specific “letter” vitamins to address the deficiencies caused by lack of those vitamins. Since most people do not eat healthily enough to get their RDAs solely from food, this approach of a targeted, personalized concentration of vitamins is on the rise.
Research shows that the two vitamins most lacking in consumers’ diets are C and D. Although deficiencies of these vitamins were traditionally the cause of scurvy and rickets, respectively, these diseases are not the reason for today’s deficiencies. Despite that, C and D are the leading ingredients in the vitamin category, with recent supplement sales for the latter accounting for almost $239 million. Additional options in vitamin form, from gummies to chewables, is increasing the convenience of taking vitamins (no more chalky horse pills or burping up garlic or fish oil pills all day!) as well as the number of consumers willing to try them.
Similar to this type of customized vitamin “menu,” there is a huge uptick in bio-identical hormone replacement therapy as more women take control of their reproductive system health rather than just suffering through menopause as previous generations did. By 2018, the market size for global hormone replacement therapy is projected to reach $3.6B. Add to that a greater awareness of using targeted dietary supplements like calcium to combat osteoporosis or probiotics for so-called “gut health,” and consumers are becoming more savvy about addressing their personalized health needs. In addition, once they have researched the necessary products, many are sourcing them online for the convenience of bulk orders and shipping.
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