NEW YORK The fact that today’s consumers are not willing to give up their dietary nutrition as a knee-jerk cost-savings measure certainly is positive for a number of reasons.
Chief of which is, any of the healthcare reform measures being considered on Capitol Hill will need a healthier patient base if any of those projected savings are going to be realized. Indeed, the shift in focus from sick-care to preventative-care will only be obtainable if patients become better stewards of their body — exchanging those nutrient-depleted foods available at most drive-thrus for nutrient-enriched foods fortified with vitamin D, for example, for stronger bones, or omega-fatty acids for healthier hearts.
And when those fortified foods are not readily available, or convenient to include in a meal, there are dietary supplements.
That uncovers the second positive — what better place to shop for appropriate nutrients than just outside America’s most accessible healthcare professional — the pharmacist? Supporting the survey with sales data — sales of dietary supplements are up 7%, totaling $6 billion in sales across food, drug and mass channels (including Walmart) for the 52 weeks ended Oct. 3, 2009, according to the latest Nielsen Company data. Incidentally, that 7% lift is some 200 basis points higher than sales recorded for the 52 weeks ending Oct. 4, 2008, which were then up 5%.