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The dietary supplements market, which includes vitamins, herbs, enzymes, amino acids and minerals is booming within the UK.

According to a report in Optimum Nutrition Magazine, the nutritional supplement marketing in the UK in 2016 was valued at £431 million. Euromonitor International reported that the sports nutrition market alone was expected to reach £799 million in 2018, rising by 13%.

Mintel Research also found that around 46% of the British population were consuming vitamins and minerals daily in 2016, with young adults often consuming supplement in an effort to treat symptoms rather than going to visit their GP or to meet their own personal fitness goals. Elderly adults often consume vitamins to try and avoid developing medical conditions and to avoid becoming ill in the colder months. Pregnant and lactating women often consume dietary supplements to provide nutrients to their growing babies.

Now, the government recommends that children between the ages of 6 months to 5 years old are given supplements of vitamin A, C and D, which will, in turn, see the market grow even further by 2020 as parents adapt this knowledge to their own children.

How Online Stores Influence the Supplement Industry

According to Grand View Research, the growth of the supplements market globally is expected to continue to rise at a compound annual growth rate of 6% from 2017 to 2025. They reported that within the UK, we account for the largest population of users of dietary supplements

In 2016, purchases through online stores accounted for most sales with more than half of dietary supplements purchases occurring online. Online stores are driving the growth of the dietary supplements industry as they are readily accessible at any time of day.

Social media has also played a role in the increase, with the use of Facebook and Twitter increasing, as well as the social profile of being “fit and healthy”.

Trends Within the Market

In 2016, it was reported that the male supplement industry was the smallest category, however, within 12 months the growth within the male dietary supplements category increased by 29%. This is mainly within the sports nutrition category.

Mintel reports that the vitamin, mineral and supplement category for males increased to 11 million in May 2016, with the proportion of men within the UK reporting daily vitamin and supplement use increasing from 37% to 43%.

Men using sports nutrition products more frequently than vitamin and mineral supplements. 42% of young men between 16 and 24 in the UK use a sports nutrition supplement.

Women are leading the market with a £55 million increase between 2016 and 2017. However, an increase of 2.5% was smaller than the increase in the male category.

21% of men and 32% of women report that they have started consuming dietary supplements after their doctor recommended that they do so.