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New Study Reveals Top Health and Nutrition Priorities for Children, According to Mothers Across Asia Pacific

Royal DSM, a purpose-led global science-based company in Nutrition, Health and Sustainable Living, has unveiled the results of a new study, which shows that mothers across APAC rank a healthy immune system, cognitive development and height growth as top priorities related to their kids’ overall health and well-being.

The DSM Kids Usage and Attitude Study conducted in 2018, surveyed more than 7,400 mothers of children aged 4-12 across 12 countries to understand the challenges and concerns mothers face when it comes to kids and good nutrition. The study found that while cognitive development are amongst the main priorities in the APAC region, bone and teeth health was more of a priority for mothers in the USA and Middle East.

“The results of this study concluded that, despite differences in culture, lifestyle and food, mothers around the world will always want the best for their children,” said Anand Sundaresan, Vice President, Human Nutrition and Health, DSM Nutritional Products Asia Pacific. “These insights help drive and advocate for locally relevant solutions in the early life nutrition market. This enables us to tailor innovation in a more targeted and impactful way that addresses the nutritional needs of kids in today’s Asian society.

Beyond gaining an understanding of behaviours, attitudes, usage patterns and drivers of consumption for nutritionally fortified products, the survey also asked mothers about key health interests for their children. Undernutrition, which can affect healthy weight gain and lead to stunted height growth, was a key issue for mothers in APAC; 3o percent of respondents were worried about the impact this had on long term health.

Undernutrition is also a primary concern for the region at a much larger scale and mothers are at the forefront of tackling this, using supplementation to support immune health and boost the intake of vitamins into their child’s diet. The study also shows that supplement usage in the APAC region is slightly higher at 89 percent than the global average of 85 percent.

Children in APAC were amongst the highest in having influence over their daily meal choices (79 percent), and with almost a third of children revealed to be picky eaters, there is an increasing need for mothers to play more of an active role in ensuring that with this choice, the right nutritional options were being provided to optimize healthy growth and development.

The results also revealed an interesting data point, that while Mums initially prioritized immunity, cognition and height growth, in the longer term, they were more interested that their children develop good behaviour and a sense of independence.

“In line with DSM’s Purpose-led, Performance-driven strategy, we are committed to continuing to drive accelerated growth in early life nutrition, aligned with UN Sustainable Development Goals 2 and 3,” added Anand.

“By providing simple, innovative solutions that can be applied to supplements or fortified food products, our goal is to empower mothers to deliver the necessary nutrients to their children to ensure optimal growth and development, now and well into the future.” [APBN]