6 health targets for women’s middle stages

The 40+ women’s market is the average age when women start to feel middle age with no answers from their primary care physicians. So they turn to supplements. Here’s the top health targets supplements manufacturers and marketers should focus their efforts.

Steffi Neth, VP Marketing

July 3, 2024

4 Min Read

At a Glance

  • Needs go beyond menopause.
  • Women want more to help their diverse health needs.
  • The 40-50+ age segment is ripe for the marketing.

For adult women in their 40s, 50s and beyond, nutritional supplement needs go well beyond perimenopause- and menopause-specific targets to provide support for a variety of health and wellness concerns during these maturing years. Fortunately, a welcome shift is occurring in the market’s offering for this important and often overlooked demographic — as well as for the women’s health category overall. 

According to a recent industry trends report from SPINS, women’s health is gaining a greater well-deserved share of the spotlight after years of being sidelined in favor of men’s products (with a large credit to women entrepreneurs gaining traction in the space). Within this broader trend of women’s health product growth, brands are offering maturing adult women a wider range of supplements targeting various aspects of benefits, including bone health, heart health, cognitive function, stress management and skin care support, among others. 

This product diversity reflects the multifaceted nature of women’s health needs as they age, and also presents increased opportunities for brands considering expanding or developing products for this audience. With greater life expectancy and a better understanding of their individualized evolving wellness needs as they age, mature female consumers are increasingly likely to seek more customized supplements and products tailored to their specific areas of concern instead of a traditional multivitamin approach. 

Related:Women and children first – digital magazine

Key supplements and health targets for women’s middle stages 

The age 40-50+ women’s segment faces unique health needs that often drive their choices in supplementation beyond the typical menopause-related support for this age group. Some of the key target supplement indications and wellness needs of this demographic include: 

• Heart and cardiovascular health – Cardiovascular disease (CVD) becomes a more pressing concern for women as they age. Omega-3 fatty acids, like those found in fish oil supplements, are known for their heart-protective benefits, including lowering triglycerides, reducing inflammation and supporting healthy cholesterol levels. Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) and magnesium are also popular supplements for heart health support. 

• Joint health – Joint pain and stiffness are common complaints among aging women, especially those with arthritis or other inflammatory conditions. Glucosamine and chondroitin supplements are popular choices for maintaining joint health and mobility by supporting cartilage repair and reducing inflammation. Turmeric and curcumin are also valued for their reported anti-inflammatory properties. 

• Cognitive function – As women age, cognitive health often becomes a greater priority, with concerns about memory loss, cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease. Omega-3 fatty acids, particularly docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), can contribute to brain health and may help maintain cognitive function. Other supplements such as Ginkgo biloba and ginseng are also reported to support memory and mental clarity. 

• Mood enhancement and stress management – As maturing women juggle multiple responsibilities and navigating life in their 40s and 50s, interest rises in supplements to help with energy, mood, stress, sleep and overall emotional well-being at this stage. Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), an ancient adaptogenic herb, is known for a range of potential benefits, including reducing stress, anxiety and symptoms of depression, as well as improving sleep and libido. Another adaptogenic herb, Rhodiola rosea, is also known for its claimed benefits, including treatment of stress-induced fatigue and depression. Mushrooms like lion’s mane (Hericium erinaceus), cordyceps (Cordyceps sinensis) and reishi (Ganoderma lingzhi) are increasingly being incorporated into supplement regimens to help manage stress and promote mental clarity. 

• Skin health and aging – Aging skin is a common concern for women in their 40s and 50s, characterized by wrinkles, dryness and loss of elasticity. Collagen supplements are widely sought after for their potential to improve skin hydration, elasticity and overall appearance. Antioxidant vitamins such as C and E, as well as hyaluronic acid, are also valued for their reported skin-nourishing benefits. 

• Gut health – Digestive issues such as bloating, constipation and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) may become more prevalent with age for women. Probiotic supplements containing beneficial bacteria like Lactobacillus strains can help restore gut flora balance, improve digestion and support immune function. Prebiotics, soluble fiber and digestive enzymes are additional supplements that may aid in gut health. 

For more marketing insights on the women's market — as well as formulations tips, a review of the latest research, and strident advocacy for women throughout the supplements industry — download the free Natural Products Insider digital magazine here.

About the Author(s)

Steffi Neth

VP Marketing, Lief Labs

Steffi Neth, VP of marketing at Lief Labs, is a dynamic leader with 20 years of expertise in marketing, creative direction and brand design. As a key member of the company’s senior leadership team, she heads up the marketing department (which she built) with finesse and vision. Driven by a passion for holistic wellness, Neth’s personal spirit mirrors her professional endeavors. Based in Valencia, California, Lief Labs is a premier formulation and product development innovator and manufacturer of dietary supplements. 

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