Instead of adhering to a formalized diet or nutrition plan, 16% of consumers said they are following “my own” diet, which might include eating more healthful foods and beverages, limiting the amount of food eaten, and other changes in eating behaviors. The keto diet, which began in the 1920s as a treatment for pediatric epilepsy and became popular as a weight loss, muscle building diet several years ago, is followed by 5% of U.S. adults. Another 4% of adults follow intermittent fasting, the popularity of which has been fueled by medical studies showing the effectiveness of this diet in improving overall health, books, and celebrity endorsements. The remaining percentages of consumers who follow a diet plan to lose weight is fragmented across a host of other diet programs, NPD said.
“From the standpoint of food manufacturers and foodservice operators, dieting and trying to lose weight are big consumer behaviors,” said Darren Seifer, NPD food and beverage industry analyst. “The opportunity is to help consumers follow through on their goals by positioning products and menu items to a specific diet, like keto-friendly, or innovate on new products that deliver on what consumers are looking for in terms of dieting or losing weight.”