Baby boomers eat their way to health and beauty

By Sarah Hills

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Nutrition

Baby Boomers are trying to eat their way to a younger complexion
with fresh, natural foods which offer "ageless health and
beauty", a new report said.

The generation aged between 44 and 62 are seeking health and youth-enhancing effects from nutrient-rich foods, according to the report called Baby Boomer Attitudes and Opportunities: At Home, At Work and On the Road​, from the providers of market research Packaged Facts. Boomers account for a third of the US population, spending about $2tn each year, with a growing proportion of spending on products that meet their desire for vitality. Refrigerated functional mini-drinks were described as "especially attractive"​ to baby boomers, while products that may help to lower cholesterol and improve heart health were in "particular demand".​ One example was Unilever's Promise Activ SuperShots which has added natural plant sterols to reduce cholesterol levels. Functional foods, which encompass both fresh and processed foods claiming to have health-promoting or disease-preventing properties beyond the basic nutritional function of supplying nutrients, provide boomers with extra supplements to their daily diet, it said.​ These were described as "souped-up "​versions of foods such as breakfast cereal and juices, which were highlighting health claims for ingredients such as fiber or whole grains, and how natural ingredients may improve the consumer's overall health.​ The research also showed a trend for boomers to "counter nature to restore their healthier and younger selves, naturally" by eating foods with nutrients such as Vitamin C to slow down collagen loss and promote glowing skin and calcium to help prevent osteoporosis. The baby boom generation is regarded as an important target group for marketers, partly because they tend to have a high disposable income. People aged 45-64 will soon become the fastest-growing segment of the US population, as Census Bureau estimates project their numbers will swell from 77m in 2006 to upwards of 82m by 2030. Tatjana Meerman, publisher of Packaged Facts, said: "Baby Boomers are the largest demographic segment today. Despite new research that shows Boomers to be far more complex than once thought, one theme that continues to unify its members is that Boomers really do feel like their lives are just getting started and much of their disposable income is expect to be spent on luxury items." ​ Previous market research found that baby boomers were more prepared to spend money on foods and supplements that can help them stay healthy for longer. This has made them a prime target for marketers of functional foods, such as products with plant sterols and antioxidants like lutein and zeaxanthin to help maintain eye health.

Related topics: Health and nutritional ingredients

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