Season Health offers food prescriptions to improve health.
Living in the modern world means people have access to more drugs and medical treatments than at any time in human history. That’s good news, but drugs only go so far in propping up health – sometimes, getting back to the fundamentals is where the real progress can be found. Toward that end, some companies – such as Season Health – are leaning into the concept of food-as-medicine, and investors are taking notice.
Season Health has successfully raised a total of $45 million in investments to develop and scale its operations. With the massive amounts of money that are thrown around in the pharmaceutical space, these investments in food-as-medicine are relatively modest, but the industry is just getting started. If there is progress made with the growth of this market, it seems likely that plenty more money will come flooding in soon enough.
It is well-known that the average American diet falls a long way short of ideal, and dietary issues are the underlying cause of a massive percentage of overall health care spending in the country. Companies like Season Health see an opportunity to change that by addressing health problems directly with food, as many of those problems are likely stemming from food choices in the first place. If the eating habits of millions of people across the U.S. were to suddenly improve, countless billions of dollars in healthcare costs would simultaneously be eliminated.
There is already no lack of places where an individual can turn for advice on improving their diet. From asking their doctor directly to using online resources and more, this is an industry that is flush with people who are offering up advice. What’s different about the concept of food-as-medicine is the more formal, official approach that is taken to that advice. Rather than just providing some basic guidelines – eat more fruits and veggies – Season Health can offer meal prescriptions, and work through the logistics of the delivery of the right foods, and more.
When left to their own devices and left to shop in their own environment, people will typically continue to revert back to the choices they have been making all along – even if those choices don’t seem to be leading to healthy outcomes. That’s why companies that are jumping into this space are treating this more as a healthcare provider and patient relationship, as they are issuing direct advice that is meant to deal with certain health issues. This isn’t a model that has been pursued particularly aggressively in the past, so it will be interesting to see where it goes moving forward.
The food-as-medicine movement is about more than just healthy eating, although that certainly is a good starting point. Season Health aims to deliver specific plans that will address problems individuals are facing with their health, such as diabetes or a high-risk pregnancy. It’s yet to be seen how much of an impact on the healthcare market these kinds of brands will make, but ongoing investments will provide the capital needed to give them a fighting chance.