Nearly half of all Americans are trying to lose weight, according to the most recent results from the Centers for Disease Control’s annual health survey. This comes as no surprise, as the obesity rate in the U.S. continues to grow–reaching 40% in the same report. Weight management is an area that has always been driven by fads. Consumers have typically sought out the easiest solutions to shed pounds, though signs point to a recent shift in this market.
Even with 49 percent of the U.S. trying to lose weight, NBJ saw a slowing of growth across weight management and weight loss supplements in 2017. Growth of pills targeting weight loss has been volatile over past couple decades as ingredients rise to fame before becoming controversial. Ephedra is the best example of this, spiking to over 50 percent growth in 2001 before crashing and burning. Weight management pill sales growth jumped above 10 percent again in 2013 with the rise of the green coffee bean, but sales began declining in 2015, and continue to have a negative growth rate.
Weight management meal supplements had strong growth over the past decade, peaking at 15 percent growth in 2012, as consumers shifted from looking at pills as the solution to replacing meals with shakes and powders instead. That category took a hit in 2017 as well, however, dropping to only 4 percent growth. We are seeing a shift from addressing weight loss through supplements to a more holistic approach through diet and wellness.
Learn more about other trends affecting the market and access more charts in the NBJ Sports Nutrition and Weight Management Report, available now.