By: Angela Arboleda, Vice President Government and Community Affairs at Herbalife Nutrition
Our purpose at Herbalife Nutrition is to make the world healthier and happier. It is pretty straightforward, but also very rich in meanings. We may agree on general terms on what “healthier” involves, but what about happier? That is one of the questions we strive to answer everyday in many, varied ways.
One of those ways is by paying attention to the trends in order to learn where we can focus our efforts to have a greater impact. As of 2016, Latinos made up 18% of the United States population, being the largest minority in the United States with nearly 58 million people. This is a trend to mind, mainly for three reasons:
- Young Community: U.S. Hispanics are the youngest of the nation’s largest racial and ethnic groups, with a median age of 28 in 2015. Furthermore, about a quarter, or 14.6 million, of the nation’s Hispanic population are Millennials (ages 18 to 33), which means that they have the most potential to drive demographic growth.
- Entrepreneurial Spirit: Latino-owned businesses constitute an increasingly important economic engine. The Latinos purchasing power has grown considerably. Hispanic buying power grew from $495 billion in 2000 to $1.4 trillion in 2016; nearly 10 percent of total U.S. buying power. Even more astounding: the U.S. Latino market is bigger than the economies of all but 14 countries in the world.
- Health Concerns: Health problems like diabetes and obesity are especially acute among Hispanics in the U.S. Adult Latinos are 15% more likely to be overweight and 65% more likely to be diabetic. Latino children are 35% more likely to be overweight than their non-Hispanic counterparts.
Over the past few years Herbalife Nutrition has focused its philanthropic giving to addressing the first two facts: Latinos are young and highly entrepreneurial. We have partnered with organizations that promote Latino leadership development, community organizing, civic engagement, and Latino youth empowerment thru scholarships that encourage furthering education and creating opportunities that will facilitate professional development.
We also work very closely with business organizations to advance the inclusion of Hispanics in the business sector, developing initiatives and partnerships that will foster economic empowerment and enhance overall business and social development. Specifically, Herbalife Nutrition is proud to support a female entrepreneurs program in Chicago. According to the National Women’s Business Council, the number of Hispanic women entrepreneurs is growing at a faster rate than any other group: 137% between 2007 and 2016.
We have achieved amazing results working with such committed partners and we are happy to see eye to eye with organizations that build a better, more inclusive and diverse world every day. To keep that positive drive, for the coming years we intend to focus more of our philanthropic efforts to growing our support for organizations that address the health concerns of the community and that align with Herbalife Nutrition’s purpose, of living healthier lives. We are committed to help address health disparities, educate and increase awareness of health issues, and promote the importance of good nutrition and fitness. Fighting the obesity megatrend and its health outcomes requires everyone’s commitment. It is a pressing battle, one we need to win: it’s the door to leveling the playing field and opening the door of opportunity for Latinos.