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Wellness Industry Statistics & Facts

The Global Wellness Institute (GWI) is recognized as the leading source for authoritative wellness industry research. Since 2007, the GWI has commissioned and published numerous research reports on the $4.5 trillion global wellness economy, including its flagship publication, the Global Wellness Economy Monitor. All reports are available free to the public. Data and highlights from recent studies are below. To download all GWI research, including special reports for certain geographic areas, visit Wellness Industry Research.

Global Wellness Economy

Updated data and trends are provided in the most recent GWI Global Wellness Economy Monitor (released in October 2018, with data for 2017).
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  • The global wellness economy was a $4.5 trillion market in 2018.
  • The industry grew by 6.4 percent annually from 2015–2017, from a $3.7 trillion to a $4.2 trillion market, nearly twice as fast as global economic growth (3.6 percent annually, based on IMF data).
  • Wellness expenditures ($4.2 trillion) are more than half as large as total global health expenditures ($7.3 trillion, based on WHO data).
  • The wellness industry represents 5.3 percent of global economic output.
  • Among the 10 wellness markets analyzed, revenue growth leaders from 2015–2017 (per annum) were the spa industry (9.8 percent), wellness tourism (6.5 percent) and wellness real estate (6.4 percent).

Key sectors include:

  • Personal Care, Beauty and Anti-Aging ($1,083 billion)
  • Healthy Eating, Nutrition and Weight Loss ($702 billion)
  • Wellness Tourism ($639 billion)
  • Fitness and Mind-Body ($595 billion)
  • Preventative and Personalized Medicine and Public Health ($575 billion)
  • Traditional and Complementary Medicine ($360 billion)
  • Wellness Lifestyle Real Estate ($134 billion)
  • Spa Economy ($119 billion)
  • Thermal/Mineral Springs ($56 billion)
  • Workplace Wellness ($48 billion)

Global Physical Activity Economy

First-ever research report on the six-sector global physical activity economy, including the fitness, sports & active recreation, mindful movement, equipment, apparel/footwear and technology markets.
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  • The physical activity economy will surpass $1.1 trillion by 2023.
  • Asia-Pacific will overtake North America as the largest market accounting for an eye-opening 40 percent of all global growth through 2023.
  • China and India together will drive nearly one-third of all growth.
  • Mindful movement will be the #1 growth sector (12 percent annually from 2018–2023).
  • Technology will be the second-fastest-growing market (8.6 percent annually).

Wellness Tourism

Access the latest wellness tourism data and trends in the most recent GWI Global Wellness Tourism Economy report (released in November 2018, with data for 2017).
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  • Wellness tourism is a $639 billion market in 2017, projected to reach $919 billion by 2022.
  • Wellness tourism grew by 6.5 percent annually from 2015–2017, more than twice as fast as tourism overall (3.2 percent annually, based on Euromonitor data).
  • World travelers made 830 million international and domestic wellness trips in 2017, representing 17 percent of all tourism expenditures.
  • International wellness tourists on average spent $1,528 per trip, 53 percent more than the typical international tourist. Domestic wellness tourists spent $609 per trip, 178 percent more than the average domestic tourist.
  • Secondary wellness travelers account for 89 percent of wellness trips and 86 percent of expenditures.


Wellness Communities

In-depth global data and key measurements are provided in GWI’s 2018 Build Well to Live Well report.
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  • Wellness real estate is a $134 billion global market in 2017, projected to grow to $198 billion in 2022.
  • The sector grew by 6.4 percent annually from 2015–2017.
  • Wellness real estate represents about 1.5 percent of the total annual global construction market and about half the size of the global green building industry.
  • The top five markets are the United States ($52.5 billion), China ($19.9 billion), Australia ($9.5 billion), UK ($9.0 billion) and Germany ($6.4 billion).
  • There are 740 wellness lifestyle real estate and communities built, partially built, or in development across 34 countries.
  • GWI estimates that sales price premiums for wellness lifestyle real estate developments average 10–25 percent over conventional residential developments.


Workplace Wellness

In-depth data and analysis are provided in GWI’s 2016 The Future of Wellness at Work report.
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  • Workplace wellness is a $48 billion market in 2017, projected to grow to $66 billion in 2022.
  • The sector has been growing by 4.8 percent annually from 2015–2017.
  • GWI estimates that only 10 percent of the world’s workers have access to workplace wellness programs and services, mostly concentrated in North America and Europe.
  • GWI estimates that workforce unwellness (chronic disease, work-related injuries and illnesses, work-related stress, and employee disengagement) may cost the global economy 10–15 percent of economic output every year.


Spa Industry

Updated data and trends are provided in the most recent GWI Global Wellness Economy Monitor (released in October 2018, with data for 2017).
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  • In 2017, there were over 149,000 spas, earning $93.6 billion in revenues and employing nearly 2.5 million workers.
  • The spa sector has been growing by 9.9 percent annually from 2015–2017, and it is projected to reach $128 billion in 2022.
  • The top five markets are United States ($20.8 billion), China ($8.2 billion), Germany ($6.7 billion), Japan ($5.7 billion) and France ($3.6 billion).
  • GWI projects that in order to staff the growing global spa business, the industry will need an additional 300,000 trained spa therapists and 54,000 experienced spa managers/directors (above the current level) by 2022.


Thermal/Mineral Springs

Updated data and trends are provided in the most recent GWI Global Wellness Economy Monitor (released in October 2018, with data for 2017).
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  • There are an estimated 34,057 thermal/mineral springs establishments operating in 127 countries.
  • Thermal/mineral springs businesses earned $56.2 billion in revenues in 2017, and they employed an estimated 1.8 million workers.
  • This sector has been growing by 4.9 percent annually from 2015–2017, and it is projected to reach $77 billion in 2022.
  • The thermal/mineral springs industry is heavily concentrated in Asia-Pacific and Europe, which together account for 95 percent of industry revenues and 94 percent of establishments.
  • Top markets include China ($17.5 billion), Japan ($12.8 billion) and Germany ($7.2 billion).


Beauty & Anti-Aging

The GWI partnered with Anjan Chatterjee, MD, FAAN, University of Pennsylvania to produce the Beauty2Wellness: Mitigating Barriers and Building Bridges report. Download the full Beauty2Wellness report here.

Key findings:

  • A natural preoccupation with beauty can contribute to unfair judgments of personality and character attributes, such as intelligence and trustworthiness.
  • People make automatic inferences about a person’s personality when they look at a face.
  • Men are especially susceptible to adverse biases.
  • Concepts that bridge beauty and wellness include nutrition, fitness and products.


Key Charts from GWI Research Reports

Global Wellness Institute research reports are made available to the public at no cost; download your complimentary copies here.

Please note that all reports are the property of the Global Wellness Institute. Quotation of; citation from; and reference to any of the data, findings and research methodology from the report must be credited to the Global Wellness Institute. To obtain permission for copying and reproduction, please contact the Global Wellness Institute by email at

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Global Wellness Economy

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Wellness Tourism by Region

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Wellness Lifestyle Real Estate Pipeline

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Global Wellness Economy Linked to Beauty and Wellness Categories

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Spa Facilities by Region

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Thermal/Mineral Springs Industry

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Wellness Real Estate Global Industry

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Wellness Tourism Spending Premiums

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Workplace Wellness Market by Region

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The Future of Work – Past and Future Dimensions

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The World’s Workers Are Unwell

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Spa Management Workforce System

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Wellness Tourism and Medical Tourism Market Spectrum

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The Wellness Cluster

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The Spa Industry Cluster

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