13 September 2005
Singapore, September 13, 2005: Singaporeans are a diet-conscious lot, with the majority of locals consciously attempting to eat healthily, and most of them choosing to eat ‘steamed’ food, according to latest survey findings from ACNielsen Research Singapore.
ACNielsen Research Singapore conducted two separate studies to gauge the health-consciousness of Singaporeans in terms of their efforts to stay healthy through their daily diet and their exercise routine.
Efforts to Eat Healthily
In a recent ACNielsen CATI Omnibus survey conducted in late June, ACNielsen found that 60 percent of Singaporeans are health-conscious when it comes to their diet—29 percent always make an effort to eat healthy food, while 34 percent would try to stick to a wholesome diet most of the time. Not surprisingly, females made up a bigger portion of the more diet-conscious, although males didn’t lag far behind when it came to watching their food intake. At the opposite end, 14 percent of the population admitted they do not pay any attention to the nutritional value of their food!
Singaporeans’ efforts to keep a healthy diet go beyond a desire to lose weight. “Judging by the findings from our ACNielsen l ShopperTrends study, where we found one in five Singaporeans (22%) trying to lose weight, the greater proportion of locals who are trying to eat healthily are genuinely concerned about their diet—and not necessarily because they’re in search of a better body shape,” said Mr Ashok Charan, Managing Director of ACNielsen Research Singapore.
So which groups of Singaporeans have the highest potential to be ambassadors for Singapore’s Healthy Eating campaign, should there be one?
“According to our ACNielsen findings, housewives, followed by PMEBs are most diligent in trying to eat healthily, with more than 70 percent in these groups claiming to always or frequently watch what they munch. At the other end of the scale, the blue-collared appeared to be least concerned— indeed, almost half claimed not to be at all concerned about eating healthily,” Mr Charan added
How We Like our Food Cooked vs How We Cook our Food
With greater awareness of a healthier lifestyle, the ACNielsen study also asked respondents how they like their food to be cooked, and the most popular method used for cooking. The majority of Singaporeans (60%) are obviously aiming at two birds with one stone—preserving the taste of their food while observing a healthy diet by eating ‘steamed’ food.
“An interesting trend we observed is that “steamed food” whether self-prepared or consumed out of home, gains in popularity as people age,” noted Mr Charan. “Meanwhile fried (57%) and boiled (52%) foods are the two other popular cooked food type for more than half the population.”
How often do Singaporeans eat Home-Cooked Food?
Attempts at healthy eating are often facilitated by eating home-cooked food where people have better control over food ingredients and cooking methods.
“Considering Singapore’s fast-paced and often hectic lifestyle, it is heartening to see that a significant number of Singaporeans (39%) still manage to make time to enjoy home-cooked dinners seven days a week,” remarked Mr Charan. Only one in 10 locals indicated they do not have any home-cooked meals at all!
Exercise Frequency of Singaporeans
While the bulk of Singaporeans are keeping close tabs on their diets, how many are actually exercising regularly for a more balanced healthy lifestyle?
ACNielsen | ShopperTrends found that almost three in every five Singaporeans (58%) exercise at least once a week, with a fifth doing it 2-3 days weekly (22%). While there was a handful (18%) who said they work out more than the recommended three times weekly, an alarming one-third (33%) claimed to rarely or never work out!
“Our study found the two groups of Singaporeans who exercise everyday to be from the youngest (15-24) and oldest (50-65) age groups, where around one in every five in each group are committed to daily exercises,” said Mr Charan. “A healthy diet is a good start but a balanced diet with adequate exercise is even more crucial.”
Conducted annually, ACNielsen | ShopperTrends is the only consistent region-wide survey providing retailers with insights in shopping behaviour and key trends in the Asia Pacific region, factors driving shopper satisfaction and loyalty. The ACNielsen | CATI Omnibus is a monthly telephone survey interviewing 1,000 people aged 15+ representative of the Singapore population.
ACNielsen, a VNU business, is the world's leading marketing information provider. Offering services in more than 100 countries, the unit provides measurement and analysis of marketplace dynamics and consumer attitudes and behavior. Clients rely on ACNielsen's market research, proprietary products, analytical tools and professional service to understand competitive performance, to uncover new opportunities and to raise the profitability of their marketing and sales campaigns. To learn more, visit www.acnielsen.com.
ACNielsen is part of the VNU Marketing Information group. VNU is a global information and media company with leading market positions and recognized brands in marketing information (ACNielsen), media measurement and information (Nielsen Media Research) and business information (Billboard, The Hollywood Reporter, Computing, Intermediair).
VNU is active in more than 100 countries, with headquarters in Haarlem, the Netherlands and New York, USA. The company employs 38,000 people. Total revenues under IFRS amounted to EUR 3.3 billion in 2004. VNU is listed on the Euronext Amsterdam (ASE: VNU) stock exchange.
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