A Focused, Evidence-Based Model

Thought Leadership


Josh Anthony

In our October blog post, we introduced the objective personalized nutrition consumer as those 10-20 percent of health and wellness consumers who are already investing in programs and testing services to help track and make sense of their individual data.

While a seemingly small percentage of the overall market – they offer tremendous opportunity for companies who understand how to meet them where they are – and engage with them about their changing (with age, health state) needs (data).

In a recently published collaboration with Foodvalley NL, we highlighted how important it is to consider both biology and behaviors when creating a personalized nutrition offerings for consumers. The personalized nutrition engagement model provides an excellent framework to consider the fundamental considerations to meet the needs of the objective personalization consumer – this is what Nlumn does for our partners to help them find their place of relevancy within shifting consumer demands.

The consumer-centric model starts with understanding and focusing on the users’ needs (desired health or functional outcome). Then selecting a meaningful measure(s) of current status. The measures then provide specific recommendations that the user must be willing and able to implement behavior changes necessary to achieve their goals. The model allows for continued engagement over time as well as re-assessment and new advice as health state/goals change.

Nlumn has been helping partners compete in the personalized nutrition marketplace and has been on the forefront of the personalized nutrition revolution. Recently, Nlumn had the opportunity to help lead the taskforce, hosted by the Institute for the Advancement of Food and Nutrition Sciences, that first introduced the personalized nutrition engagement model. Using this model, we guide our partners through a process to identify how best they can build relevancy and engage the objective personalize nutrition consumer.

Following are a few steps in that journey:

1. Identify who you will serve and what benefits are most important to them.
  • Focus is the key. Don’t try to be all solutions for all users.
  • Pick a need that you can address in a meaningful way. Identify where your program, products or technology can best support a benefit.
  • User expectations are often ahead of science. Demonstrating proof points of your program can differentiate your product service over time.

2. Determine how you will help the consumer measure status and progress.
  • Measures are the foundation for users to track progress. Make sure that you can provide a reliable feedback loop.
  • Use validated diagnostic methods and measures (biological, behavioral and sociological). The best tests are easy to understand, cost effective and user accessible.
  • People are looking for help to make sense of their data. Consider if you can take advantage of what your consumer may already be tracking.

3. Make sure to provide consumers with outputs that match inputs.
  • Outputs (information) need to be easy to understand and actionable.
  • Communicate transparently. This is critical to establish trust with users.
  • Data reporting should consider the users skill and experience.
  • Be consistent with applicable guidelines and regulations.

4. Enabling behavior change:
  • Make sure user’s needs and preferences are acknowledged and respected. They will then be more open to objective inputs.
  • Don’t try and change someone’s food religion. Meet them where they are and provide positive nudges.
  • Introduce your “behavior change mediator” - a real person behind the technology to help provide guidance.

If you are interested in learning more, we’d welcome the chance to hear from you.

In addition, I hope you will join me at the IAFNS - Advancing Food and Nutrition Sciences Science Innovation Showcase on December 14-15 as we continue to share and debate to gain even more insight on the science and underlying data of innovative ingredients and products in the food and beverage ecosystem.

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