In the U.S., a rising awareness of a more holistic approach to health is driving the growth of alternative medicine, according to a study from The Nutrition Business Journal 2020. The study also found that in Europe, growing demand is being influenced by new research and healthcare innovations. Among other findings, this study found that sales of immunity supplements are projected to increase by over 25% in 2020, up from 8.5% growth last year. A sizeable contingent of those purchases came from new consumers—people who had not taken dietary supplements before.
The pandemic has brought more attention to our healthcare, but could there be something else driving the growth of the alternative medicine industry?
The Growing Demand for Alternative Medicine
Demand for alternative medicine hinges on the perceived benefits and efficacy of certain medical practices, as patients are less likely to cut spending on healthcare than they are to reduce spending on more discretionary goods. Moreover, as the number of people with disabilities grows in the United States, more insurance companies and employers are recognizing the benefit of covering alternative healthcare.
This $18 billion industry is expected to generate a revenue of $210.81 billion by 2026, and is projected to expand 17.07% during the forecast period. The increasing use of natural supplements, as well as health insurance initiatives that include health coaching, are creating revenue-generating avenues. The industry is growing worldwide—researchers found that approximately two-thirds of the population surveyed in developed and developing countries reported using a form of alternative medicine or working with an alternative healthcare provider.
The Collaborative Care Model
With the rise of chronic diseases, long-term pain, and more, the need for alternative healthcare practitioners and health coaches is growing now more than ever. Patients are dissatisfied with the small amount of time they get with their doctors, and with doctors who prescribe a pill for every illness. Patients are saying that the conventional model is not working, and they are now seeking and demanding an alternative option.
Alternative medicine that takes into account what the patient does on a day-to-day basis, including nutrition, exercise, and more, is the future of medicine. Health coaches working in a collaborative care model with doctors are able to help patients take control of their own healthcare. The coach helps with educating, supporting and motivating individuals to take the reins with the protocols prescribed by their doctor, leading to lasting lifestyle and health changes.
Alternative Medicine Finally Becoming More Mainstream, www.healthline.com/health-news/alternative-medicine-becoming-mainstream#Sometimes-Patients-Are-Resistant-to-Change.
“Global Complementary and Alternative Medicine Market 2019-2026 By Intervention (Botanical, Acupuncture, Mind, Body, Yoga) & Distribution (Direct Contact, E-Training) – ResearchAndMarkets.com.” AP NEWS, Associated Press, 16 Apr. 2019, https://apnews.com/press-release/pr-businesswire/f6c91edc01294b1ab15970ff13e9e8e7.
ltd, Research and Markets. “Complementary and Alternative Medicine Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report by Intervention (Magnetic Intervention, Energy Healing), by Distribution Method (E-Sales, Direct Sales), by Region, and Segment Forecasts, 2020 – 2027.” Research and Markets – Market Research Reports – Welcome, www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/4751788/complementary-and-alternative-medicine-market?utm_source=BW.
www.ETHealthworld.com. “Nutraceuticals: From Alternative to Mainstream – ET HealthWorld.” ETHealthworld.com, 30 Sept. 2020, https://health.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/pharma/nutraceuticals-from-alternative-to-mainstream/78402708.