What the British Consumer Understands About Antioxidants – What About African Consumers?

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04 August 2010 16:44

Antioxidant awareness grows among consumers

An AOk Drinks survey reveals a growing understanding of antioxidants and identifies knowledge gaps for the industry to tackle.

The majority of people who purchase drinks such as AOk know that antioxidants are good for us, that we need to consume plenty of them to gain any health benefits, and that they fight free radicals, according to a survey by AOk Drinks.

Stuart Roberts, MD, founder and nutritionist at AOk Drinks, says: “We’re not surprised that people generally understand that antioxidants are good for us, but we were surprised at the level of understanding, which is higher than anticipated. Two-thirds understand that antioxidants fight free radicals and 65% know that they defend the body (cells) against oxidative stress.”

Red grape, cranberry, pomegranate and green tea are cited as leading natural ingredients that are packed with antioxidants by more than half of respondents. Kidney beans are a good source of antioxidants but this isn’t widely known (15%), as producers in this sector haven’t pushed this message during recent years, unlike in the juice sector.

Word of mouth marketing by leading antioxidant drinks brands has worked wonders for the industry, but it’s the consumers’ desire to regain control of their health and well-being that’s driving this awareness,” says Roberts. “I’m frequently asked to explain how antioxidants work, what free radicals do and how they can benefit different conditions.”

  • 66% understand that antioxidants fight free radicals.
  • Only 23.5% know that antioxidants provide support against injury and muscle damage for people who exercise regularly, yet 47% exercise for at least 30 minutes a minimum of three times per week.
  • More than half (53%) correctly identified that 3,000-5,000 ORAC units are recommended each day.
  • Red grape and cranberry were flagged as being high in antioxidants by 72% and 68% respectively.
  • 11% falsely believe bananas are naturally high in antioxidants.
  • Kidney beans, not previously marketed for their antioxidant content, were correctly identified as being high in antioxidants by just 15%, highlighting the importance of industry communications to educate people about the natural benefits of healthy ingredients.
  • 78% eat breakfast every day and 64% aim to eat five portions of fruit/veg each day. A further 54% cook the majority of meals from scratch.

The consumer survey of 102 British adults was conducted independently online by AOk Drinks in June and July 2010 ahead of the August rebrand.

Source: AOk Drinks

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