Young people today are facing alarming levels of stress. CDC data from the Adolescent Behaviors and Experiences Survey (ABES) highlights just how serious this issue is. Some key findings from the survey, which was fielded from January to June 2021:
  • 33.7% of high school students experienced poor mental health (stress, anxiety and depression) during the pandemic.
  • 44.2% of students felt persistently sad or hopeless.
  • More than 33% of all U.S. high school students felt they had been treated badly or unfairly at school because of their race or ethnicity; those who reported racism were more likely to experience poor mental health.
For Centennials, aka Gen Z, a never-ending influx of negative news and unreasonable educational and career standards of themselves are also sources of stress, according to a report in International Journal of Sociologies and Anthropologies.

To support this generation, as well as the younger Gen Alpha, experts discuss the healthy eating and supplementation strategies that can help with overall wellbeing on page 18.

Taking a closer look at cognitive health, on page 24, industry experts share the latest science and strategies for cognitive health at every age. Read up on the nutrients that are proven to help ease stress, improve mood, benefit sleep, and sharpen thinking.

The market here is huge, and growing.

Among the stats our experts shared:
  • 66% of consumers are interested in cognitive health products
  • More than 25% of Americans aged 50-plus regularly take brain health supplements, according to the 2019 AARP Brain Health and Dietary Supplements Survey
And for those of us in the workforce, on page 37 we look at actionable strategies that support a healthy, happy, and productive workplace to help ease stress and ward off burnout.

The need for strategies that support mental wellness is great. Consumers are looking to build stress resilience, boost cognitive performance, and improve their outlook. Increasingly, they are turning to natural ingredients including nootropics and adaptogens to help them feel and function at their best.

Companies throughout the natural products industry are helping to meet the demand with research-backed ingredients and formulations.

From September 20-22, WholeFoods Magazine and Industry Transparency Center will present the next Naturally Informed virtual event:Stress and Mental Wellness: Mastering the Market(Scan the code to learn more.)

We will explore the latest research on cognitive boosters and mood modifiers targeting areas like the endocannabinoid system, the gut-brain axis, and more. World-class experts will be sharing their valuable insights so you and your entire team can benefit from free educational and training sessions on consumer trends, and strategies for developing and positioning products. You’ll also learn the most current information on regulatory issues and communicating with consumers on packaging, in social media, and in store, as well as winning strategies for merchandising products on the shelf. And we all need to take care of ourselves, too, so we will be covering strategies for avoiding workplace stress and fostering supportive workplace cultures. Scan the code  (at bottom left) or visitwww.NaturallyInformed.netto register.

I hope to see you (virtually, at least!) at the Naturally Informed event in September, and save the date for the final event of 2022.Active Aging: Mastering the Marketwill be held November 16 to 18.

We’re also gearing up for Natural Products Expo East. This year, the event is taking place September 28 to October 1, 2022, in Philadelphia. The WholeFoods Magazine team will be at booth 3710. We’d love to see you! Come by the booth to let us know about all the trends and products you are loving, and to pick up a free swag bag so you can tote around the finds you pick up along the show floor.

Next up, we will be in Las Vegas for SupplySide West, which is set for October 31 to November 3, 2022. We will be at booth 3537. If you are Vegas bound, we’d love to see you there!

Trade shows are back in person full force for the first year since 2020.

We’re looking forward to reconnecting with industry friends, and making new ones! Of course, we’re also feeling the added pressure of traveling and the increased workloads that trade shows bring. It’s going to be a busy fall. We’ll be keeping those adaptogens on hand to help us stay more resilient to the stress, for sure!