Six Of The Latest Trends In The Nutrition Industry

The onset of the global pandemic in 2020 has led to a major shift in the way nutrition and diets are perceived. With the hardships, COVID-19 threw in front of everyone, our everyday behaviour, routine, and habits have changed drastically.

The onset of the global pandemic in 2020 has led to a major shift in the way nutrition and diets are perceived. With the hardships, COVID-19 threw in front of everyone, our everyday behaviour, routine, and habits have changed drastically.

With priorities changing, the major focus has shifted towards health and well-being, as well as nutrition. People have finally come to terms with the adage, ‘’YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT.” As the world is still battling COVID-19, here are some nutrition trends that are likely to take over in the year 2021.

Immunity Boosters

COVID-19 has drawn the focus on immunity and thereby, it has led companies to come up with products that can support a healthy immune system. With age-old Kadha recipes being implemented to boost immunity or to ward off the effects of COVID-19 to supplements containing zinc, selenium, Vitamin C, or the consumption of probiotics (buttermilk, miso, kanji, kombucha, natto, yoghurt, kimchi, gerghins, sauerkraut, tempeh) to promote a healthy gut (as 80% of the immunity lies in the gut).

We are seeing it all today. This trend seems to have continued in 2021. Herbal supplements containing ginger, elderberry, turmeric, Echinacea are selling like hotcakes because companies claim that these would boost or enhance the immunity of an individual.

However, studies are yet to prove how useful these products or supplements could be in fighting COVID-19.

Flexitarianism

A new trend seemingly doing the rounds this year is flexitarianism. A Flexitarian is a person who is primarily vegetarian but occasionally consumes fish or meat. While it is difficult to convince a non-vegetarian person to turn vegetarian or vegan overnight, encouraging them to reduce the consumption of non-vegetarian foods has significant advantages.

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This is something that healthcare professionals and companies seem to be actively promoting. According to Statista, about 60% of the millennial population is looking to adapt to a flexitarian diet.

This way people would be consuming more plant-based food products as compared to meat-based ones and the portions of meat-based products is likely to go down in the year 2021.

Sugar-Free Diet

Refined sugar has been on the radar for quite some time now.  Refined sugar has ill effects like an increase in blood sugar levels and insulin levels, being more addictive than cocaine, affecting gut health, ultimately affecting immunity, and so on.

With people looking to adapt to a healthier lifestyle, the consumption of natural sources of sugar such as coconut, dates, and jaggery has increased. Even companies today are coming up with healthier and sugar-free options in lieu of their already existing sugar-loaded products.

This is definitely a welcome change owing to the increase in lifestyle diseases such as obesity, diabetes, PCOS, etc.

Plant-Based Food Power And Sustainability

Off–late, people are leaning towards a plant-based diet over conventional options. There has been a steep rise in the introduction of various plant-based food options such as plant-based meat, plant-based protein powders, pea protein, brown rice protein, plant-based cheese, yoghurt, milk, vegetable-based pasta, etc.

Experts have started promoting plant-based diets for consumption because of their innumerable benefits and a close relationship with sustainability. Consumers today are greatly concerned about the source of their food and how it affects the environment on the whole. Plant-based eating is in trend because it is easy to eat veggies as they need minimal processing, are full of vitamins and minerals along with phytonutrients.

Hence, eating more plant-based foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and nuts are being considered as the way forward in 2021.

Mental Well-Being And Mood

Several kinds of research have proven that there can be a direct connection between your eating habits and mental health. With the onset of COVID-19 across the world, medical professionals remained worried as the lockdown saw a drastic change in people’s behaviour.

The mental health of individuals was greatly affected due to various factors and hence, experts are of the view that a healthy, balanced diet (diets rich in magnesium, zinc, B-vitamins, omega 3 fatty acids) can have a positive effect on the emotional well-being of an individual.

The gut-brain axis is being constantly researched on, like the gut and the brain are connected via the vagus nerve, which means if you eat well, your gut would be healthy and that would ensure that your brain functions well and your mood is regulated.

Since stress is becoming a major part of our lives; adaptogens can nourish the body holistically. Adaptogens are herbs and healing plants that are capable of fighting stress, boosting immunity, promoting hormonal balance, and decreasing chances of degeneration.

Examples of adaptogens are Ginseng, turmeric, basil, liquorice, Ashwagandha, and Goji berries.

There has been a change in the focus of how mental health is perceived and 2021 is definitely bound to bring along changes in this regard.

Meal Kits And Ready To Eat Meals

Being in lockdown meant people cooking meals of their own and not relying anymore on takeout and takeaways. Today, there’s an increased demand for premade meal kits and health-food boxes which not only saves time but allows individuals to eat healthy at home.

Most of the meal kit companies focus on local food, sustainable practices and cater to a variety of diets and food preferences. Meal kits are bound to see growth in 2021 thanks to the convenience, affordability, and healthfulness they offer.

Image source: An image from Pexels

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About the Author

Huda Shaikh

A Nutritionist, Clinical Dietitian, Speaker, health/fitness blogger, online show host, menu planner, menstrual health, and holistic health advocate who runs a nutrition website named NutriBond and a movement named the Period movement. She loves read more...

37 Posts | 125,455 Views

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