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Sports Nutrition Expanding Beyond Core Users

Sports nutrition continues to be one of the fastest growing categories of the health and nutrition market, with an expanded consumer base of young, affluent lifestyle consumers.

On a global level, the sports nutrition market continues to expand, growing not only among core users but also by benefiting from global health and wellness trends around healthy diets, physical activity practices and efforts to extend healthy life spans.

In addition to core and casual users, broad categories of new users are emerging, particularly in developed markets with established sports nutrition marketplaces. For instance, lifestyle users are mainly young, affluent consumers who invest heavily in fitness as a fundamental aspect of a healthy, high-performance lifestyle. Their demands for functionality are high, but they are unwilling to sacrifice health and wellness claims, such as organic, all natural, sustainable and non-genetically modified organisms (GMO), that drive their sports nutrition purchases. Many of them prefer plant-based proteins and are known for taking their “selfie of sweat” seriously, not necessarily to show off, but to build or feed a network of accountability partners.

Beyond lifestyle users, a new, adjacent category is mobile consumer (mConsumer) users. These users are always digitally engaged and track fitness and wellness goals with apps, smart wearables and smart homes. These consumers increasingly demand personalized nutrition options, while being the keenest to sign up for membership services if they truly love a company.

Sports nutrition consumption has increased over the review period due to a broader range of consumers looking to support fitness goals with products that match their lifestyles (or desired lifestyles), expanding from core bodybuilders and athletes to casual users, more female users, children and senior populations looking to avoid sarcopenia and trying to stay healthy during the aging process.

With this broader consumer demographic base, growth opportunities are expected to arise, including the need for clean label products (e.g., organic certifications, whole food ingredients and plant-based protein options), the opportunity to engage specific crowd cultures via partnerships, the capacity to personalize not only the product, but also the purchasing experience, while engaging mConsumers who are accessing more information and tracking fitness goals with apps and smart wearables.

Learn more about the sports nutrition market in INSIDER’s Sports Nutrition Energy Digital Magazine.

Carolina Ordonez is a consumer health industry analyst at Euromonitor International. She brings several years of work experience as a researcher, consultant and speaker, having helped firms with strategy planning and business expansion throughout the Americas. In her current role, she provides insights on the latest trends in consumer health including over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, vitamins, dietary supplements, sports nutrition, weight management and well-being products. She holds a master’s degree in international management from University of Exeter in the U.K.

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