In the 7th annual Pollock Communications and Today’s Dietitian “What’s Trending in Nutrition” survey, nearly 1,500 registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) were asked to predict the trendiest diets and foods in 2019. The ketogenic diet is expected to become the most popular diet in 2019, topping intermittent fasting and clean eating.
Related: Is the keto diet for you?
Here are the top 10 trendiest foods:
1) Fermented foods: Including kimchi and yogurt, fermented foods help maintain a healthy digestive system and have beneficial effects on blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, immunity, and the brain. But it isn’t all good news. Some fermented foods contain high amounts of sodium, which has been shown to elevate blood pressure.
2) Avocado: Rich in nutrients (including folate and potassium), fibre and monounsaturated fat, the avocado is a favourite among endurance athletes. Despite its high-calorie count, the avocado may help control your weight. This is thought to be due to a unique sugar it possesses, which may block the effects of insulin and breakdown of sugar.
3) Seeds: They are said to be “reservoirs of nutrients.” Being the primary way how plants reproduce, seeds carry nutrients essential to life – protein, vitamin E, potassium, magnesium, and iron. They also include healthy fats and fibre. Like avocados, they are high in calories, so it’s best to eat them in moderation.
4) Ancient grains: So-called ancient grains such as amaranth, farro, freekeh, kamut, quinoa and teff are usually used in their whole state, unlike wheat, and are therefore higher in fibre and protein.
5) Exotic fruits: Though highly nutritious, these fruits are often expensive. Acai and goldenberries (gooseberries) are two of the most common exotic fruits.
6) Blueberries: A reliable source of vitamin C, potassium and antioxidants, blueberries are said to help lower blood pressure and improve cardiovascular function (boost nitric oxide function).
7) Beets: This root vegetable is a good source of fibre, folate (a B vitamin) and nitrates (vasodilator). Beet juice has been found to lower blood pressure and improve endurance performance. Don’t be alarmed if after consuming a lot of beets your urine and stool turn a red-purple colour – it’s harmless.
8) Nuts: A convenient on-the-go snack, nuts are a favourite among busy triathletes. Research has shown, nuts may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
9) Coconut products: such as coconut water (low in calories and fat, but buy the no-added-sugar kind), coconut milk (high in calories, so use sparingly), coconut meat (high in saturated fat and calories, but also high in fibre), coconut sugar (to be avoided, since it’s no more nutritious than regular sugar), coconut oil (high in saturated fat, though some studies show it does not seem to raise blood cholesterol), and coconut flour.
10) Non-diary milks: Made from not just soy, rice, and almonds, but also oats, hemp, cashews, macadamia nuts, peas and quinoa, the alternative milk category is vast. These products can be good choices if you’re lactose-intolerant or don’t drink milk for other reasons. Note that non-dairy milks lack the calcium found in cow’s milk, so look for brands with added calcium.