19th May 2022
The Role of the Gut Microbiome in 2022
Digestive health issues are on the rise and more and more consumers are looking to address this. Over the last couple of years, consumers are re-evaluating their health and taking a proactive approach to well-being even if not suffering from any specific health issues. As consumers become more conscious, they will also look to seek out new ways in which to improve their overall health as they recognize that all areas are interlinked.
So, what does this mean for the gut microbiome in the next five years and will consumers want products that address this?
Across the globe, the prevalence of digestive health problems continues to rise across the globe, with a significant proportion of consumers saying that they suffer from problems such as gas, bloating, and stomach aches on a regular basis. This can be attributed to an aging society, however, it is also related to a variety of lifestyle habits, such as poorly structured meal times and the tendency to overindulge in products that may not offer the best nutritional value.
FMCG Gurus consumer insight shows that 56% of global consumers state they plan to address their digestive health over the next twelve months. As consumers look to re-evaluate their health and wellbeing like never before, they are becoming more proactive whilst adopting a prevention over cure approach. This approach will lead to consumers seeking out functional products that blur the boundaries of groceries and medicine to boost their digestive health, as well as seeking out everyday food and drink that they believe can help facilitate this.
Currently, less than one in five consumers say that they have heard of the gut microbiome, with this awareness dropping to around one in ten in Europe. This means that currently, the phrase is very much industry-led, and labeling a product around addressing this issue may cause some confusion amongst consumers. However, of those people who have heard of the gut microbiome, most say that they have looked to change their dietary habits to address and improve this area of wellbeing. As more consumers research different areas of their health, more will become known about the role of the gut microbiome and its role in helping prevent health problems and maximize wellbeing.
FMCG Gurus research shows that of those consumers who have not heard of the gut microbiome, 67% say that they have heard of the concept of bacteria within the digestive system. This is something that will have been influenced by the growth of the probiotics and cultures market in recent years. Indeed, with such claims now being available across many categories, consumers have accepted that a product that is marketed around being high in beneficial bacteria can be tasty and indulgent.
This shows that whilst the functional market for digestive health continues to grow, and consumers become more educated on issues, more needs to be done to educate consumers about specific products and ingredients, and how they contribute to a healthy lifestyle.
This blog is based on FMCG Gurus: The Evolution of Digestive Health – How Raised Awareness About the Gut Microbiome will Shape Perceptions Towards Digestive Health and Immunity. For more information, please click here.