Personalized Nutrition - a new Era of Public Health?
Updated: Apr 30, 2019
Tobias - you founded Lykon, the leading personalized Nutrition and Diagnostic company in Germany. Can you share about the current products and what you offer to consumers?
Our vision is to empower people to live a healthy life. With this we have a pretty holistic approach towards the health of our customers. The core of our product offering though are at home blood tests combined with personalized recommendations. In these tests we check markers like vitamins, minerals, hormones, proteins in different clusters in order to meet the goals and needs of our target groups. For example we have a product called myVeggie check where we measure markers that are critical for Vegetarians and Vegans like Vitamin B12, Iron (Ferritin) and SHBG. We combine these tests with other services like nutrition consulting or supplements.
What is Personalized Nutrition - why is it an important development?
Personalized Nutrition for me is nutrition that fits the needs and requirements of your unique metabolism, DNA, microbiom and takes your health goals into account. The development of personalized nutrition is essential in a wide range of areas including increasing healthy life span, human performance and prevention. It is truly empowering and one of the big scientific topics in this decade.
You just recently launched together with MyMuesli a personalized muesli based on Lykons blood test, you are a partner of ALBA Berlin and you opened a pop-up store in Düsseldorf. How do these partnerships help to promote Personalized Nutrition?
All our projects including the partnerships with Alba Berlin and Mymuesli as well as the the pop up store where a part of our roadmap to fulfill Lykon’s Mission which is to “become a companion that helps people to understand their health and motivates them to change their behavior by giving personalized recommendations”. Through the Alba Berlin project we learned a lot about the nutritional requirements of professional sports-people, the pop up store brought Lykon even closer to the customer and we had the chance to get a lot of customer insights to make our product even better in the future. With mymuesli we launched the first “blood based” personalized muesli worldwide to the market. This was only possible because we share a similar mission with the mymuesli team and because their great service allowing customers to mix their personalized muesli online. At the moment we are looking for more partners that are able to provide blood based nutritional products.
What do we need to do let Personalized Nutrition become a fundamental Part of Public Health and Diet? Which role do insurances or supermarkets play?
In general we need to create awareness and demand from consumers. If people understand the importance and impact of personalized nutrition, pressure will increase on health insurances to pay for related services. In parallel we need to involve decision makers at insurances and ideally doctors in the discussion about personalized nutrition. Supermarkets can play an important role in a way that they can create more awareness for personalized nutrition and open up the market. If the big chains will sell blood, DNA or microbiom based nutrition it would speed up the process. It is important that supermarkets learn to sell these more complex products and make personalized food end-consumer friendly and easy to understand.
In five to ten years, how does personalized nutrition look like?
Personalized Nutrition including blood, DNA and microbiom testing will be integral part of most nutrition consulting programs. I believe that more and more people will frequently test their blood or microbiom and have tested their nutrition relevant DNA. Also supermarkets will go more away from a pure “taste” (sugars, fats, industrial flavorings) more to a “need” approach with selling personalized food products that help people to achieve their health goals. With this eating behavior will of consumers will strongly change towards a much more conscious and individual approach.
Find out more about Tobias' company Lykon here: https://www.lykon.de.