As the pursuit of holistic well-being continues to shape consumer preferences, the significance of gut health for overall wellness has gained traction. Understanding the latest trends in gut health is vital for developing products that cater to the evolving needs of consumers. In this blog post, we’ll delve into gut health trends in 2023, exploring:
- the vitamins and supplements preferred by individuals with digestive issues
- their frequent shopping channels and social media platform
- trending ingredients for digestive health
- and intriguing insights from social media data
Supplement Products Preferred by People with Digestive Issues
Individuals often turn to specific vitamins and supplements to support their gut health when addressing digestive issues. Brightfield Group’s Wellness Consumer Insights research found that people with digestive problems are more likely to purchase certain supplements. These include probiotics/postbiotics, collagen, and kombucha.
Probiotics and postbiotics receive a lot of social media attention, especially around gut health conversations. Of consumers in need of digestive wellness, 23% purchase such supplements, as opposed to 11% of the general population. Probiotic supplements that contain beneficial bacteria strains like Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium are highly sought after, as they aid in restoring the balance of gut flora and supporting healthy digestion.
Collagen is also gaining momentum in the digestive space, with 11% of consumers with digestive issues purchasing it compared to 6% of the general population. Collagen is purported to promote good gut health by supporting and strengthening the gut lining, enhancing digestive function through amino acids, reducing inflammation, and providing nourishment for a balanced gut microbiome. Our data shows women make up the bulk of collagen users at 67%.
While not exactly a “supplement,” kombucha is also particularly popular among those seeking gut health. 13% of them purchase kombucha as opposed to 6% of the general population. A popular fermented tea beverage, kombucha, is said to increase healthy gut bacteria and aid digestive wellness. Millennials are particularly drawn to kombucha, with 20% of millennials struggling with gut health purchasing the drink.
Trending Ingredients for Digestive Health
In addition to the supplements above, various ingredients have gained popularity due to their potential benefits for digestion.
Turmeric has gained immense popularity due to its anti-inflammatory properties. 13% those in need of gut health are purchasing the ingredient
Vitamin B-12 remains a popular ingredient for maintaining gut health and for good reason. It is essential for gut health due to its involvement in red blood cell formation, nerve function, energy metabolism, maintenance of the gut lining, and support for a healthy gut microbiome. It also plays a crucial role in ensuring proper oxygen supply, optimal nerve communication, efficient digestion and absorption of nutrients, and the integrity of the gut barrier. Our data shows that 30% of consumers in need of digestive health name vitamin B-12 as a part of their wellness regimen.
Adaptogenic herbs are prevalent in the gut health arena for their potential to combat stress, which can impact gut health. These herbs are believed to support the body's stress response and, as a result, promote overall digestive well-being. Elderberry and ashwagandha are two in particular that have maintained purchasing among this group in the past year.
Frequented Shopping Channels and Social Media Platforms
Knowing the preferred shopping channels and social media platforms consumers utilize allows brands to cater to the shopping habits of those seeking gut health solutions.
Our data indicates that consumers most frequently shop for supplements at traditional grocery stores, online retailers (most notably Amazon), and pharmacies (like Walgreens and Duane Read). Our data shows that health food stores like Whole Foods are actually some of the least popular places for consumers with digestive issues to purchase supplements, with only 13% of consumers naming them as their retailers of choice.
Before making any purchases, consumers tend to conduct their own research for trending brands, ingredients, and information. Our data shows that those struggling with digestive health are more likely to be on Twitter and Reddit as compared to the general population. Reddit allows consumers to get their questions answered, find recommendations, and be part of the digestive health conversation overall. Twitter hosts influencers, experts, and brands who share educational content, product recommendations, and personal stories, attracting engaged audiences seeking insights into digestive wellness.
Brightfield Group’s data shows that #guthealth, #healthylifestyle, #healthyeating, and #wellness are the top trending hashtags amongst consumers interested in digestive health, collectively garnering a whopping 234 million mentions on Instagram alone. Popular content ranges from infographics to recipes to day-in-the-life reels.
Gut Health Trends from Social Media Data
Analyzing social media data has revealed interesting gut health trends, providing valuable insights into consumer behaviors and preferences. Some intriguing trends include DIY fermented foods, gut-brain connection, and gut health challenges.
Platforms like Instagram and TikTok are witnessing a surge in content related to DIY fermentation, including making sauerkraut, kombucha, and kefir at home. Consumers are embracing these homemade options as they seek more control over the ingredients and fermentation process, which may offer additional benefits to gut health.
Consumers are also recognizing the link between gut health and mental well-being. Social media platforms have become a hub for conversations surrounding the gut-brain connection, highlighting the importance of maintaining a healthy gut for overall cognitive function and emotional balance.
We’re also seeing the emergence of social media challenges centered around improving gut health, like "30 Days of Gut-Friendly Eating" or "Gut Reset Challenge," as awareness around gut health increases. These challenges encourage individuals to adopt gut-friendly dietary habits and share their experiences, fostering a sense of community and accountability.
Innovators in the supplements space can align their product development strategies with consumer demands by staying in tune with the latest trends in gut health. By leveraging insights into consumers seeking digestive wellness, innovators can create effective solutions that meet evolving needs and contribute to overall well-being.