2019 is coming in hot, folks! And that means the top food and nutrition trends are making their way into the spotlight. Be in the know and take a look at what product developers, executive chefs, and culinary experts predict we’ll see a lot more of in the New Year.
(This post is written by Grateful Grazer contributor, Mackenzie Burgess, RDN.)
Food Trend #1: Gut-Healthy Foods
From kombucha to yogurt–more good-gut bacteria is swarming the grocery shelves, restaurant menus, and hotel lobbies. You can expect this takeover to continue. Find a growing number of probiotic-rich products such as sparkling-water, dairy-free beverages, nut butters and oatmeal.
There are several health benefits from these fermented friends:
Food Trend #2: Edible Insects
Eating these creepy crawlers might sound like a nightmare, but did you know over 80% of the world consumes insects?
We could shift our outlook on this food source as we discover more about how bugs could reduce and treat nutritional deficiencies and help sustain life. As a bonus, eating insects may have environmental benefits as well.
Here are a few quick facts on bugs to make you think twice about their repellent reputation:
- Bugs may help address issues like malnutrition and iron deficiency anemia
- A 3 1/2 ounce serving of Thailand's giant water beetle contains about 20 grams of protein, roughly equivalent to a 3 ounce serving of chicken.
- Insects require far less space and water than most animals, and have a much larger yield—as much as 95 percent of a bug can be consumed.
Interested in trying them out? Check out this website that can connect you to stores and restaurants offering bugs near you.
Food Trend #3: Plant-Based Options
From veggie burgers to cauliflower rice and BBQ Jackfruit Sandwiches–more and more creative plant-based options are becoming available to consumers.
Overall, there is power in incorporating more fresh produce, whole grains, legumes, seeds and nuts into the diet such as:
- Maintaining wellness and general health
- Managing blood sugars and diabetes
- Decreased risk of developing heart disease
Food Trend #4: Delivery Services
With the rise of food delivery apps and meal kit services– dinnertime is shifting more towards doorstep service. Although this isn’t inherently bad, there are a few things to keep in mind with this rising shift:
- You may be more likely to practice mindful eating at a restaurant where it’s easier to avoid distractions, have intentional conservations, and enjoy the flow of the meal. If you’re having your food delivered, try to be as mindful as possible.
- While meal-kit delivery services often provide healthy meal options, they also may have excessive packaging and a hefty price tag. Try to balance these services along with healthy, homemade meals.
Food Trend #5: Fad Diets
Fad diets, such as Paleo, Keto or Whole30, are labeled as “fad” for a reason. They’re typically unsustainable and can’t be maintained in the long-run. Trust me, I’ve tried them all. The new year will likely be no different, as the latest diet companies market their “magic”.
Although a “quick fix” may sound enticing, the best way to eat is whatever fits in with your lifestyle. If you’re looking for freedom from the fads, try Intuitive Eating. This philosophy promotes ditching the diets, listening to your body’s hunger cues, and allowing your body to come to its natural, biological weight.
Research has shown this approach can promote:
- A healthy relationship with food and nutrition
- Positive psychological effects
- Finding the body size that’s right for you
Food Trend #6: Dietitians as Chefs
Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) are starting to build a presence in the culinary world by pairing delicious with nutritious. In the new year you can expect to see more dietitians working alongside chefs to craft personalized meals and portion sizes to cater to consumers’ nutritional needs. There are also more and more dietitian-chefs like Michelle Dudash, Julie Harrington or Sara Haas who provide expertise in both.
This movement is super exciting because:
- RDNs are the experts on nutrition with knowledge rooted in the science of food. This means RDNs can safely recommend the health benefits of certain foods and implement them into recipes
- RDNs can more readily accommodate to dietary restrictions and individualized needs
Check this awesome resource highlighting RDN bloggers in the culinary spotlight to help guide your week’s healthy meal planning.
Overall, it is an exciting time for nutrition and nutrition professionals as 30% of all food companies are now invested in healthy foods and this number continues to rise. Unfortunately the fads are still out there, so work towards implementing a balanced approach to food, and look to a registered dietitian nutritionist to clear up information on all things nutrition.
Mackenzie Burgess, RDN is a dietitian, recipe developer and blogger based in Fort Collins, CO. Her blog focuses on simple recipes with customizable ingredients of your choice. This allows recipes to cater to different dietary preferences and ingredients already on hand. Connect with her on her website, Instagram, Pinterest, or Facebook page.