12 Crucial Health and Wellness Trends that will Shape 2019


Millions of consumers now live in societies of once undreamed affluence and convenience. Alongside that we have more knowledge at our fingertips and are more digitally connected to each other and our surrounds than ever before.  Amidst this change though, one constant remains – the importance of our own health and wellness. After all, we can’t buy our health and our health and wellness makes a huge difference to the quality of our lives! With that in mind, here’s both a profound truth and prediction: health and wellness WILL become a more and important part of how consumers live – and measure – their lives in the coming years. Which is why I thought I’d share some thoughts around the major health and wellness trends of 2019 and how consumers are shaping these trends.

Here are 12 crucial health and wellness trends I predict will shape our lives in 2019:

1.The quantified self

The quantified self – a concept of deeper insight to personal health and functioning via self-tracking, has slowly grown in popularity over the last 10 years. With sophisticated technologies becoming more accessible it will be the health and wellness trend that will boom in 2019. These parameters will go beyond the metrics of smart watches and move more towards incorporation of medical conditions and psychological health. The internet of things will continue to grow with instant, usable real time analytics and recommendations shaping health and wellness expectations and outcomes.

2. Health and wellness trends for global citizens

12 crucial health and wellness trends that will shape 2019 virtually connected teams

The basic office cubicle of the past is giving way to multi-national, virtually connected teams that are more mobile than ever. That means that health and wellness initiatives need to be more mobile and scalable than ever before. Moreover, employees are influencing and shaping the boundaries of what is acceptable and what is no longer tolerable in employee benefits, particularly in health and wellness trends. Flexible work hours, creative work environments and health and wellness programs and offerings will continue to become a rising trend in 2019 to ensure the attraction and engagement of talented employees.

3. Betterness

The growing mobile workforce that I mentioned above also increasingly cares about social responsibility, the environment, authenticity and mindful consuming. Marshall McLuhan said “We look at the present through a rear view mirror. We march backwards into the future.” That is true here.

The move to betterment comes from looking at the past and seeing that the destruction of the environment, consumerism and increasing urbanisation has not been all good. As a result the health and wellness trend to betterment continues to grow. That is – we want to be happy, healthy and conscious of our impact. This will be very apparent with health and wellbeing too. Betterment is not a segmentation of fitness, nutrition and mindset factors, but rather embodies a holistic approach to health, incorporating all of these elements in a betterness lifestyle movement.

4. Ambient Wellness

12 crucial health and wellness trends that will shape 2019 green workplace

The rising awareness of personal impact on the environment around us (our work and living spaces) is driving the demand for health boosting technologies to be embedded in everything around us – from our consumables to our cafes. Expect to see more indoor greenery to embrace the healing power of nature; smarter food preparation and storage options in lifestyle calibrated refrigerators; music replacing televised news in waiting rooms; more air quality measurement; and soothing soundscapes in public areas for stress reduction and meditative experiences. Consumers want this and they expect companies to provide the bonus of wellness as part of their user experience.

5. Prevention not cure is one of the imperative health and wellness trends 

By 2020, chronic disease will account for almost 75%  of all deaths worldwide. With such alarming statistics personal health management is becoming more important than ever before. The integration of artificial intelligence into personal wellness is becoming more powerful and leaves little room for excuses when it comes to preventative health. Apps like Active8me that educate, equip and support people to live healthy active lives will continue to become more important throughout 2019 and beyond.

6. Home is the new hospital

12 crucial health and wellness trends that will shape 2019 doctor monitoring patient at home

There is no denying that hospital systems worldwide are suffering with the growing number of chronic lifestyle diseases. As a result, 2019 will continue to see a focus on healthcare management systems that seek to take the burden out of the hospital system and into the home. Innovative medical technologies will become accessible to more users. Allowing remote monitoring and prevention of health issues that would normally see people clogging up waiting rooms and hospital beds.

7. Fitness vs wellness

The global, collective mindset towards health and wellness is shifting. While the desire for that chiselled ‘beach-ready’ body will never diminish, people are gaining a greater understanding that fitness is not the same as wellness. Wellness is more holistic than merely fitness and encompasses purpose, mental health, stress and overall wellbeing beyond just the physical. This will increasingly influence corporate health and wellness initiatives and employee benefits schemes. It will also increasingly influence insurers who are growing to understand that preventative health is more than a simple measure of fitness and encompasses things like nutrition, mindset and sleep.

8. Hygiene taken to the next level

12 crucial health and wellness trends that will shape 2019 test results on phone

Health and wellness trends towards hygiene have been a somewhat untapped market. However, it is rapidly coming to the forefront of consumers minds. Similar to the biofeedback data we seek in ‘the quantified self’, smart toilets that analyse your waste will be commonplace before we know it.  The ultimate investigation into how you digest and process nutrients or medications through stool and urine samples can be delivered directly to your phone. Alongside this, reasonably inexpensive nano-biosensors will become popular for analysing everything from sweat to tears. They will offer feedback about food and water quality, living environment and overall health.

9. Personal optimisation using your DNA

The decoding of the genome in 2001 has opened up a field of truly personalized health. The cost effective, non-invasive ability to analyse your own DNA (with a saliva swab as opposed to a blood test) has opened a whole new dimension to the average health and wellness seeker. The ability to leverage your own personal biomarkers – from analysing your predisposition to nutrition intolerance or sensitivities (eg lactose intolerance); to the effects of coffee on your body; to vitamin and mineral intake is a game changer for achieving maximal personalised health.  Most interestingly, the increased use of DNA tests for optimised health is not just about health itself but will also be a new self-enrichment status symbol.

10. Transformative health and wellness travel

12 crucial health and wellness trends that will shape 2019 transformative health and wellness program travel

As with ambient wellness, our need for a quick health and wellness fix has crept into our holidays as well. Basic massages and meditation classes are the health and wellness trends of yesteryear.  The growing popularity of health retreats and fitness camps is now being extrapolated to holistic transformative travel. Consumers are expecting immersive experiences in health and wellness that will impact the rest of their lives.

This escapism into health and wellness ideals is becoming more elaborate and will continue to evolve in 2019. Richard Branson recently initiated the world’s first ‘meditation flight’ where Virgin Australia partnered with Smiling Mind to complete a flight solely dedicated to mindfulness, mediation and mental wellness. Similarly, the recently opened Six Senses Bhutan comprises five totally differently themed and decorated lodges (think a forest-within a forest, old stone ruins), each immersed in one of the five key pillars of happiness.

11. Sustainability and ethical activewear

Consumers are putting their money where their mouth is when it comes to sustainable and ecofriendly health and fitness products. They talk the talk and are now able to walk the walk, literally, in ethical activewear. Companies such as Adidas and Nike are the trendsetters when it comes to innovative fit-fashion, so it is no surprise they have incorporated more eco-friendly sustainable products.

Adidas introduced Ultraboost sneakers made from plastic found in the ocean (each pair uses the equivalent of 11 plastic bottles). Meanwhile Nike released the Flyleather, a sneaker made with sustainable leather that has half the carbon footprint of a normal one. Companies like these are cleverly incorporating both the physical health needs and ‘feel good’ wellness for their target market. With consumers being more environmentally health conscious these health and wellness trends will continue to grow in 2019.  

12 crucial health and wellness trends that will shape 2019 adidas ultraboost shoes

12. Brain Hacking

The term “brain hacking” sounds nefarious, but it’s a thing. We will certainly see more focus on brain optimisation and improving your brain healthy in non-invasive ways. Leveraging the concept of neuroplasticity, these cognitive boosting concepts will take health and wellness trends to the next level in 2019.

This focus on peak performance is a next step in people’s search for not only self-actualisation and an “elite brain”, but also status. Purpose built clinics can now make multi-dimensional assessment including brain scans, psychodynamic history, autonomic nervous system (ANS) data, psychometrics, performance analysis, and hormone and gene panels, to construct a menu of enhancements and optimisations. You will be able to reach a new level of health and wellness using neuromodulation technology, infra red photobio modulation, neuro -feedback and at-home tech.

Health and wellness trends will empower consumers

Trends come and go, but one enduring certainty is that health is always on trend. The enhancement, optimisation and ‘hacking’ of health and wellness will continue to be driven by the demand of a more aware consumer.

At Active8me we aim to do just that – to meet the needs of consumers where they most want it – at their fingertips, anytime, anywhere. Leveraging technology in a customised, empowered and transformative way, and with one goal in mind – health and wellness. That makes it an ideal resource for insurers and their members; for corporates and their employees; for health platforms and their customers; and indeed for anyone who cares about health and wellness engagement and outcomes.

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