Thursday, July 25, 2024

Top 5 This Week

Making Healthy Eating Habits Less of a Far-Fetched Idea

The Rise Fund, the multi-sector strategy of TPG’s global impact investing platform, has officially announced a $200 million worth of investment for Foodsmart, a leading telenutrition provider and food benefits management platform in the US. To understand the significance of such a development, we must acknowledge how forming healthier eating habits has historically proven to be a challenge for anyone who is struggling with a chronic illness, who works multiple jobs, or anyone who is otherwise just unable to cook healthy meals for themselves. This is where Foodsmart come in. You see, the company leverages its FoodSMART telenutrition solution, along with its FoodSMART food buying marketplace, to unlock an unprecedented access to high quality groceries, meals, as well as medicine partners. More on the same would reveal how the company banks upon its partnership with health plans and providers to let users enjoy personalized and affordable healthy eating options. Practically speaking, Foodsmart combines virtual nutrition counseling through the largest standalone network of Registered Dietitians in the US, with an integrated digital food benefits management platform. The latter basically allows patients to plan and personalize healthy meals, order quality food from grocers nationwide and local medically-tailored food partners, apply for SNAP benefits, and learn ways to buy good food at affordable rates. Anyway, this combination, on its part, presently enables Foodsmart to serve more than 2.2 million members. The whole effort is also supported by its contractual agreements with leading regional and national Medicaid Managed Care Organizations, Medicare Advantage plans, commercial insurers, and over one thousand employers.

“Diet-related diseases and food insecurity are estimated to cost the US over $1 trillion per year, and disproportionately affect low-income and minority populations,” said Tom Verghese, Business Unit Partner and Healthcare Lead at The Rise Fund. “Foodsmart’s unique virtual care platform meets these challenges by providing access to the largest network of Registered Dietitians in the US alongside medically tailored nutrition guidance to improve metabolic and whole body health. Foodsmart has proven to be the category leader from our longstanding thematic focus on the Foodcare space.”

Making Foodsmart’s case even stronger are all those matched-pair case control studies and randomized control trials that the company has already conducted in conjunction with leading health plans and academic institutions. During these studies, Foodsmart has been able to showcase $24 to $58/monthly per member savings in year one, and a significant improvement in HbA1c. Furthermore, the stated research drives have unveiled a substantial success for the company in regards to achieving reversal of food insecurity and reduced rates of obesity, diabetes, hypertension and hyperlipidemia, especially among lower income populations. Not just that, Foodsmart is also known for supporting patients in their effective use of higher cost interventions such as GLP-1s and bariatric surgery. In case that wasn’t enough, then we must touch upon the company’s knack of collaborating with the individual on a day-to-day level so to help them improve their food buying environment and eating habits before, during, and after interventions. Such close collaboration, like you can guess, makes it possible for Foodsmart to sustain the delivered positive effects for longer stretches.

As of today, Foodsmart continues to work in conjunction with leading health systems like Advocate Health, Intermountain Health, and Memorial Hermann Health System, to reach tens of millions of patients. Here, primary care physicians would refer their patients to Foodsmart dietitians, who then guide them on healthy food choices, and therefore, address their individual condition.

“We are excited to partner with TPG’s Rise Fund given their strong track record scaling the reach of organizations that create sustained impact for people of all income levels–including Medicaid members and blue collar workers,” said Jason Langheier, MD, MPH, the CEO and Founder of Foodsmart. “We support all people, regardless of economic status.”