Curated Content from the Global Wellness Institute | December 2, 2020


 Laws of Economic Scarcity: The Pandemic Crushes Wellbeing, So Wellness’s Value Surges
 Six Wellness Trends for 2021
 Meditation Up 2,900% Globally during Pandemic, According to Fitbit Data

 GWI’s Research Report “Defining the Mental Wellness Economy” Released Next Week
 Study: Weight Training Reduces Anxiety
 December’s Wellness Moonshot: Express More Thanks
 Must-Reads from the Wellness World

Laws of Economic Scarcity: The Pandemic Crushes Wellbeing, So Wellness’s Value Surges
By Thierry Malleret, economist

Many analysts have noted that wellness has been an economic bright spot during these long months of the pandemic. Malleret points out that this has to do with basic rules of economic scarcity. The opportunities for wellbeing have been decimated (with massive anxiety, lockdowns, social/political polarization, fear of unemployment, and constant fear of COVID-19). And when something becomes scarce, it instantly becomes more valuable. This is why the pandemic is so bullish for the wellness industry at large.

Six Wellness Trends for 2021

A panel at the recent Global Wellness Summit brought together top journalists and future-forecasters to predict the big wellness trends of 2021.
Here are six trends they argued would gain serious momentum next year:
  1. A powerful new convergence between healthcare and wellness
  2. A big focus on strengthening the immune system
  3. Wellness expanding its boundaries to once-taboo issues like money, death and sex
  4. Nature, nature, nature
  5. “Home” wellness
  6. New directions in beauty, from antimicrobial products to at-home treatments


Meditation Up 2,900% Globally during Pandemic, According to Fitbit Data

Fitbit recently aggregated its user activity data (March–September 2020) to see how people worldwide are adapting their fitness and wellness practices during the pandemic while gyms have been shuttered and people are forced to stay at home.

The data shows that people are desperate for stress relief. Meditation saw a massive 2,900% increase globally (New Zealand saw the largest spike in meditation at 9,017%, followed by the UK at 7,350%). And it’s no surprise that fitness activities that don’t require a gym have spiked, with big increases for cardio-focused and outdoor activities, including running, kickboxing, rollerblading and hiking. Sweden saw the biggest increase in hiking at 181%. Since June, active minutes of fitness/wellness sessions are actually down across the world while sleep duration is up—especially in Latin America.

Read more about how wellness activities are changing during COVID-19.


GWI’s Research Report “Defining the Mental Wellness Economy” Released Next Week

Next week, the GWI will release its 115-page research report “Defining the Mental Wellness Economy” to in-person and virtual attendees of the recent Global Wellness Summit (GWS).

This is the first study to define and measure mental wellness as a global industry ($121 billion) and to benchmark its four sub-segments: 1) senses, spaces and sleep ($49.5 billion); 2) brain-boosting nutraceuticals and botanicals ($34.8 billion); 3) self-improvement ($33.6 billion); and 4) meditation and mindfulness ($2.9 billion). It also analyzes the market innovators and business models to watch in each segment.

To receive the full report, register for virtual access to the 2020 Summit, where you get on-demand access to 73 keynotes and panels with dozens of world experts on the future of wellness. Learn more.


Study: Weight Training Reduces Anxiety

A new study from the University of Limerick-Ireland found that a basic, twice-weekly program of lunges, lifts, squats and crunches (sometimes using equipment like dumbbells) led to 20% better scores on tests for anxiety. The researchers noted that the effect was larger than expected, and with so much anxiety in the world, resistance training looks to be a promising stress-management tool.

December’s Wellness Moonshot: Express More Thanks

The Wellness Moonshot for December is to express more thanks. Science teaches us that living and leading with gratitude improves our mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health. Gratitude is part of the daily practice of virtually every world faith, according to psychology professor Robert Emmons. A heartfelt thank-you reminds us that we’re part of a human community, brings the spiritual into our lives, helps us forge more positive relationships, and improves work culture. More simple “thank-yous” pay big dividends in challenging times.

Experiment with these practices to show more gratitude.


Must-Reads from the Wellness World

The Evolving Travel ‘Experience’: Virtual, Actual and In BetweenNew York Times, Nov. 12, 2020
“Tech workers are never going back to the office”...Vanity Fair, October 22, 2020
How to boost happiness hormones like serotonin and dopamine in everyday lifeCNET, Oct. 29, 2020
I'm a survivor! How resilience became the quality we all craveThe Guardian, Nov. 24, 2020
WHO to set up center for traditional medicine in IndiaThe Week, Nov. 13, 2020

A Striking Stat: Wellness Apps Will Skyrocket
Over 870 million consumer wellness apps are forecast to be in use by 2024, generating $5 billion in revenue. Employer wellness apps will be worth $20 billion by 2024.
Source: Juniper Research, November 2020

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