Weight management, mental health rise as consumers remerge from lockdowns

Over the past year and a half, health has became a top priority for many Americans as they have navigated the spread of the coronavirus, which simultaneously posed a new threat and underscored those posed by underlying health conditions. Together, these factors took a toll on how many in the US perceive their health, according to New Hope’s 2021 Changing Consumer Survey.

The survey of more than 1,000 adults conducted in June revealed that Americans are significantly less satisfied with their health now than they were before the pandemic. In June, only 8% of respondents said they were extremely satisfied with their health and 46% reported being satisfied. This is down from pre-pandemic in 2017 when 20% reported being extremely satisfied and 47% said they were satisfied with their health.

“There’s probably nothing quite like a pandemic to shake your confidence in your health,”​ Arthi Padmanabhan, market research manager with New Hope, told attendees at Natural Products Expo’s virtual event July 14. “And there’s ample reason to feel this way. Researchers project that COVID-19 reduced US life expectancy by over a year in 2020, based on data published in February this year in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. And even as the threat of fatality has decreased in 2021, it stands to reason that reduction in life expectancy may persist – especially across race and ethnic lines because of the long term social, health and economic impacts of this pandemic.”

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