New research investigates the aging of populations and its influence on markets
LONDON New research released by Datamonitor on Friday identified the aging of populations around the globe and how this trend will have crucial implications for the U.K. markets.
“The aging of populations globally is an issue that will increasingly shape both society and its consumer markets,’ stated Matthew Adams, consumer analyst at Datamonitor and co-author of the reports.
A large proportion of the population in each European country accounted for by consumers aged 50 and above. The U.K. was one of the youngest nations, relatively, in Europe in 2007, but the senior population still exceeded one third of the overall population. The greatest proportional growth in senior is expected to occur in the United States, with a 1.5% compound annual growth rate among seniors.
However, the relative proportion lags behind the norm in Europe by a short margin. In absolute numbers, the senior group of consumers comprises more than 90 million Europeans and should rise to over 100 million by 2012.
Overall, seniors are an ideal target demographic, the report concluded.
“With substantial assets and significant liquid capital, seniors are likely to ‘upgrade’ and choose premium products, particularly those ‘empty nesters’ who have less obligation to support the family and children,” stated Matthew Taylor, consumer market analyst at Datamonitor and also co-author. “The recent ‘less is more’ philosophy might reinforce the pursuit of high quality products. The aging of the baby boomers is also a factor in turning toward a less materialistic approach to the luxury lifestyle. With increased consumer awareness of ‘sustainability’, many products made with natural ingredients cultivated organically, or sourced from specific origins, are becoming popular among these sophisticated consumers.”
Study suggests that diabetics are unaware of eye health risks
PINELLAS PARK, Fla. Fewer than 40% of consumers with diabetes are fully aware about eye health risks, according to recent consumer research conducted by Transitions Optical.
The study revealed that less than 40% of the population surveyed correctly identified vision issues as possible complications of diabetes.
“Diabetes has reached epidemic proportions worldwide,” stated Susan Stenson, global medical director at Transitions Optical. “Aside from its direct effects in decreasing visual acuity and causing blindness, diabetes can also significantly impact quality of vision by reducing contrast sensitivity and accentuating glare,” she said. “While the major recognized direct ocular complication of diabetes is diabetic retinopathy, diabetes also appears to increase susceptibility to a number of common vision-threatening diseases, such as cataract, glaucoma and macular degeneration. Furthermore, diabetics may be at a higher risk for the development of UVR-related ocular diseases.”
Additional findings from Transitions Optical and the World Health Organization include the fact that as many as 45% of diabetics do not receive regular eye exams and as many as 37% of diabetics do not wear protective eyewear.
Martek Biosciences, March of Dimes partner to advocate DHA supplementation
COLUMBIA, Md. Martek Biosciences Corp. on Wednesday partnered with the March of Dimes to promote the importance of supplementing with DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid, during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
“We’re pleased to support the March of Dimes in their efforts to raise awareness of DHA-omega-3 fatty acids as part of a program to support healthy pregnancies and healthy babies,” stated Steve Dubin, Martek CEO.
The March of Dimes recommends that pregnant women consume at least 200 milligrams of DHA daily to help support fetal brain and eye development. After the baby is born, DHA omega-3 fatty acids consumed through breastfeeding may also help support mental, visual and motor skill development.
Omega-3 fatty acids are found in certain types of fish, nuts and vegetable oils. However, DHA is present naturally in specific fatty fish such as salmon, trout, mackerel, sardines and tuna, as well as algal oil, organ meats and breast milk. Pregnant or nursing women or those planning a pregnancy should eat up to 12 ounces of low-mercury content fish.
For women who are vegetarians, or who have safety concerns about fish, foods fortified with DHA or a multivitamin or supplement containing at least 200 milligrams of DHA are suggested alternatives.
The new March of Dimes awareness effort is supported by a three-year agreement with Martek Biosciences Corp. The March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. Its mission is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.
Martek Biosciences Corp. produces life’sDHA, a vegetarian source of DHA omega-3, for use in foods, beverages, infant formula, and supplements, and life’sARA (arachidonic acid), an omega-6 fatty acid, for use in infant formula.