Each year is a new beginning. And a new opportunity to improve your overall well-being. You can transform your health—even with the smallest changes. As you get geared up for 2016, here are some of the hottest trends in health and wellness. It’s going to be an exciting year, so embrace it by living in the moment!
THE CARB COMEBACK
Rice, oats, whole grains and even … tada… BREAD are back on the menu as we get smarter about carbs and learn to distinguish the types that provide nutrients and lasting energy and those that can add to our waistline. One study of 5,000 consumers released in November found that 1 in 2 could now distinguish between a “good” and “bad” carb. It’s exciting that we are also starting to understand and separate carbs into “slow-fuel” (vegetables, fruits, whole grains, etc.) and “fast-fuel” (sugars, processed and refined foods). Plus, just as you finally learned how to pronounce quinoa, a family of new supergrains is getting a lot of attention, including farro, amaranth and kamut. By not having consistent amounts of carbs, you’re messing with your blood sugar throughout the day, which can contribute to many other issues. You want to choose carbs that have at least some other nutrient in them. If the food has fiber, it’s going to digest more slowly. Your body depends on carbohydrates to function properly.
EATING BFAST, LUNCH, & DINNER OUT OF A BOWL
It all started with the smoothie bowls. Now bowls are branching out into lunch and dinner too. They are becoming featured healthy items on restaurant menus – going by the name of macro bowls, veggie bowls, grain bowls, poke (sushi-style) bowls, etc.
SOUPING IS THE NEW JUICING
In 2016, green juice fasts and detoxes are going to be replaced with cleanses and diets that use healthy soups – thick, runny, chunky or smooth. Souping can actually be healthier for detox compared to juicing for one main reason: soup retains fiber.
Matcha is becoming a trendy new staple in pretty much any coffee shop you go. And it’s not just for drinks. We are even starting to see matcha being added to desserts and brunch menus. With this kind of enthusiasm for the tea, we could see matcha-dedicated cafes starting to pop up. We might even see the antioxidant-rich green tea starting to show up in beauty products. Read my recent blog post on Matcha.
SEAWEED IS THE NEW KALE
Suddenly, everyone is talking about this crazy underwater plant, for its nutrient profile, skin-care benefits, and incredible potential for combatting climate change. Seaweeds are amongst the most nutrient-dense plants on the planet, and as they have access to all the nutrients in the sea, they are an extremely rich source of minerals. We are even seeing manufacturers using seaweed as a healthy option to replacing the salt added to processed foods. The bioactive substances derived from seaweed provide a beneficial and functional role at the cellular level, contributing to healthy looking skin, hair, and nails.
MINERALS ARE THE REAL HEALTH ROCKSTARS
Vitamins may get all the kuddos, but in 2016 experts are going to be calling minerals the real health rockstars. The day to day “things” we experience in today's modern life that affects us all—stress, sleeplessness, and a dependence on stimulants—aren't just giving us something to complain about, they’re depleting our mineral levels, particularly magnesium. According to Functional medicine doctors, 80 percent of us are deficient in magnesium. This is a problem because magnesium is linked to improving your muscle and bone strength, helps regulate blood pressure and keeps our immune systems strong.
BEAUTY PRODUCTS YOU DRINK
2016 is going to be the year where sipping is part of your beauty regimen vs. what you slather on. Consumers are increasingly making the connection between skincare and nutrition. We will see a wealth of beauty-boosting beverages loaded with the nutrients that help promote a healthy glow from within, prevent signs of aging, fight acne, and more. Many of these elixirs will contain antioxidants and superfood ingredients linked to skin health, like turmeric, probiotics, zinc, and adaptogens like Rhodiola Rosea.
MEET ADAPTOGENS, THE NEW STRESS-FIGHTING SUPERHERBS
Everyone has heard of (and hopefully eats) superfoods. Well, meet the superherbs! There are superpowers present in some plants that can help our bodies adapt to stress and handle it in a healthy way. These are called adaptogens and they have the attention of respected physicians like Frank Lipman, MD, skincare lines and even juice companies. The potential of these stress-fighting superherbs to improve all kinds of issues related to health and beauty is super exciting. These superherbs can help your body adapt to its specific needs. Get ready to see adaptogenic ingredients like moringa, Ashwagandha, maca and ginseng in your juices, smoothies, chocolate, beauty products, and more. As we burn out on RX drug experiments and look to sustainable sources to help with stress and health, all arrows point to these herbs.
NUT MILKS GO WILD
Nut milks are getting tons of attention - more than cold-pressed juices were getting even five years ago. Thanks to all the exposure around animal agriculture, dairy intolerance and the issues around soy, more people are drinking nut and seed milks than ever before. But now, people now want milks that are all natural and emulsifier-free (NO carrageenan). Customers are looking at ingredients. Get excited to see some new brands and improved brands! Have you ever made your own nut/seed milks? Here is a nice DIY plant milk recipe formula.
ANTI-DIET! IT'S ABOUT THE BRAIN, NOT THE A$$
Thanks to a growing millennial philosophy about fitness—working out is not about chasing a dress size or for appearances anymore. It’s about working out to ease anxiety and feel strong rather than just to lose weight. The mental health benefits of fitness really are to experience how good it makes your body and brain feel. This stamps an impactful change in thinking about wellness as a holistic way to live versus always trying to look a certain way that leads to letdown and depression for many. Checkout the Anti-Diet Project.
OIL WILL BECOME YOUR CLEANSER OF CHOICE
Ready for a new skincare ritual that has a lot in common with your grandmother’s evening cold cream to remove dirt and makeup? Bring on nature! This modern holistic technique uses natural plant oils. You will see many beauty brands bringing in cleansing oils in 2016. It’s a gentle concept of oil cleansing – an oil cleanser effectively tackles the dirt and oil on your face – vs. water-based cleansers that need surfactants to provide suds to get your skin clean. The oil removes the emulsified oil, makeup, and pollution while leaving your skin balanced and nourished.
Cheers to 2016!
Previous post: Why I'm Vegan, by Kristin Wuhrman
Owner of BEVEGAN® Grassroots Health. Board Certified Holistic Health Coach. AKA Miss Bellevue Vegan. Plant-Based Health Consultant. Vegan Athlete. Outdoor Enthusiast. Outdoor Gear Reviewer. Author. Cotopaxi Local Ambassador. Animal Lover. Dreamer. Believer.
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