The explosion of self-administered tests to help diagnose several conditions from pregnancy to allergies, fertility to nutrient deficiencies fits nicely into a trend called personalization. This trend, which has been budding for several years, even decades, has witnessed a major influx of products to help consumers take back control of their health.
Perhaps the oldest example of personalization is the home pregnancy test. This test allowed women to diagnose their own pregnancies.
Since then, the idea of home testing has grown by leaps and bounds.
How Big is the Personalization Trend?
The realm of personalization includes everything from digital diet and fitness apps to wearable devices and home testing kits. All of these combined are helping fuel an industry predicted to be worth $149 billion by 2020.
Take Campbell’s, for example. This food giant just invested $32 million in a startup that focuses specifically on personalization. Launched early in 2017, the start-up, called Habit, will develop nutrition recommendations and deliver personalized meals based on an individual’s biology, metabolism and personal goals, while offering one-on-one wellness and nutrition coaching.
Habit is not just a meal delivery startup, it uses data from an at-home test kit to make personalized food recommendations tailored to an individual’s unique DNA.
Creating Your Own Personalized Health Plan
Does this mean the “one-size-fits-all” approach to nutrition, diet and health is fading away? Absolutely.
According to Julian Mellentin of New Nutrition Business, “Personalization is about consumers taking back control...they want to feel more empowered and confident to create their own healthy eating patterns. It goes hand-in-hand with growing awareness that diet is a personal matter and it’s another stage in the long slow death of ‘one size fits all’ dietary recommendations.”
The same types of home tests you see for other categories are also alive and well in the nutrition space. One of the more well established categories is vitamin D.
Due to the mounting evidence surrounding the myriad benefits of this universal nutrient and the relative deficiency among a large portion of the population, self-administered vitamin D testing is easy and ubiquitous.
Personalizing your omega-3 levels
Self-administered testing is also becoming more prevalent in the omega-3 market.
While most experts support the benefits of omega-3s for a whole host of conditions, most people just don’t get enough. Enter the Omega-3 Index test, which measures the amount of EPA and DHA in the blood.
Read more about the Omega-3 Index
Not only is this a measure of how much of these omega-3s are in the body, but the resulting number also points to your relative risk for sudden cardiac death.
But there are benefits beyond heart health. In fact, just this year several published studies have come out attesting to the correlation between the Omega-3 Index and brain health, as well as total mortality.
The Omega-3 Index test is another self-care tool riding the wave of personalization, a trend that is predicted to change the way people address several aspects of their life, from food to health to nutrition. Jump in while you still have the chance!