Diet Trends

What a year 2017 has been! You saw the ketogenic, flexitarian and vegan diets rise to fame and marvelled the wonders of probiotics and fermented foods such as kefir, kimchi and sauerkraut. Diet trends are hotter than ever, with over 85% of Aussies trying to follow a healthy diet and the nation spending over $13 billion each year on “healthy eating”.

TBT has peered in the crystal ball of 2018 to reveal what you can expect from this new year of food and health. Kick back, relax and get up to speed with the latest trends in your world of food and eating… all while you enjoy the festive holidays!


1. Low FODMAP is the new gluten free

We now know that your gut health plays important roles in your immune function, mental health and in managing your weight. A low FODMAP diet limits foods that commonly cause bloating, cramps and flatulence in people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), such as processed meats, onion, garlic, wheat products certain vegetables and fruits. Remember that a low FODMAP diet is only beneficial for people who experience symptoms when eating these foods – for everyone else they are perfectly normal foods that you should include in your diet.

Look out for: more products marked as low FODMAP or that have the FODMAP-Friendly logo – much like how gluten free products are endorsed by the Coeliac Australia . Seek advice from your GP or Accredited Practising Dietitian for an individualised plan.


2. Fermented Foods

With all the interest in gut health, fermented foods are a trend that is here to stay! They are noted for being able to give you an energy boost and improve your digestive symptoms.

Look out for: sauerkraut, miso (fermented soybeans), kimchi, tempeh.


3. Foods that promote gut health

Gut bacteria are all the buzz at the moment! There is so much research happening in this field and the health benefits are stacking up. Having a healthy gut can help improve digestion, mood, energy and supports a healthy immune system.

Look out for: yoghurt, vegetables, fruit, legumes, wholegrains.


4. More superpowders

Move over matcha and turmeric, macca is strutting to centre stage in 2018 as a potent beauty booster that’s not just skin deep. Made from the root of the macca plant, this powder is thought to be an energiser, improve your reproductive health, blood pressure and even symptoms of osteoarthritis. While more research in humans are needed to be done before these claims can be confirmed, macca will be yet another superpowder hype that will hit the health aisle shelves.

Look out for: smoothies, cereals or baking bonanza featuring macca powder.


5. Mediterranean makeover

You’ve tasted the wonders of Greek cooking with extra virgin olive oil, legumes and pulses, and it’s now time to be inspired by Arabic flavours.

Look out for: Moroccan, Syrian, Lebanese and Persian-inspired dishes hitting your next brunch menu, featuring pomegranate, eggplant and haloumi cheese. Tahini (sesame seed paste), spice mixes such as dukkah, harissa and za’atar will be jazzing up your weekly meal plans.


6. Foodie Express Post

With less time to browse supermarket shelves for the healthiest products or ingredients for your next meal, online ordering, home-delivered ingredients and ready-made meals are great time-savers and will become more commonplace. They provide some relief to weekly hustle while still allowing you to enjoy meals in the comfort of your home. Food delivery services such as UberEats, Deliveroo and Foodora are also showing promises in keeping your inner foodie satisfied in a timely manner. However, if you see pick-up time as an opportunity to fit in some pre-dinner walkabout, then it’s time not wasted.

Look out for: Online ordering options for supermarkets and fruit and vegetable boxes in your local area – many will have special offers for free delivery or free trial periods.


7. Veganism 2.0

Plant-based eating is winning its way to our hearts with meat-free Mondays and vegan options floating into many menus. That said, vegan ‘fast food’ – vegan fried chicken, fries from McDonalds and even oreos are vegan – will not offer the same cancer-fighting, skin-loving health benefits as fresh produce! Instead, embrace the vegan movement as an opportunity to enjoy more fruits, vegetables, lentils and pulses in your diet.

Look out for: vegetable breads, made from carrot, beetroot, spinach and more! Veganism will be bringing out the big guns, from burgers with bleeding patties and tuna made from tomatoes.


8. Drink your bouquet

Floral and fruity flavours will be making an entrance in water as edible flowers and fruit essence infusions, desserts and drinks. These chime health benefits such as reducing blood pressure and improving your sleep, much like their tea counterparts.

Look out for: water and sparkling drinks with edible flowers and fruit infusions, lavender lattes and milkshakes, elderflower shortbread and cocktails.


9. Waste-free eating

Eco-friendly houses, solar panels and now waste-free food!

Look out for: root to stem – use of often discarded or composted plant parts – pickled watermelon rind, broccoli stem slaw – we welcome the new era of sustainable cooking!


We’d love to hear about the food trends that you’re looking forward to in 2018. Please let us a comment below or on our social media.


This piece was written by Accredited Practising Dietitian, Michelle Hsu.

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