Nutrition Trends: 2014 Edition
By Laura Cipullo, RD, CDE, CEDRD, CDN and the Laura Cipullo Whole Nutrition Services Team
We took to the blogosphere earlier this year to highlight the food trends of 2013. We focused on chia seeds, natural sugar “alternatives”, self-monitoring, gluten-free foods, juicing, and leading a simpler life. And we have to say that those trends were pretty accurate. In honor of the New Year quickly approaching we wanted to share some of our predicted food trends of 2014.
There’s no question that alternative sugars have become increasingly popular these past few years. With products like Stevia and coconut sugar leading the way last year, we have a hunch that Pyure will take the lead this coming year. It’s organic, non-GMO, and has a decent amount of fiber in a serving. According to their website, Pyure is an organic stevia blended with agave inulin fiber, which can act as a probiotic and digestive aids. With claims like that, we foresee a surge in popularity for this stevia sweetener. This does not mean we are fans rather we are just letting you know!
Beans, Beans, They’re Good for your Heart…
The editors at Eatocracy predict that beans will be a big trend among the culinary scene come 2014. We’d have to agree with them. Chefs have been featuring more protein-rich beans on their menus. We love it! Beans are a great source of fiber, protein, not to mention vitamins and minerals. Plus, they hold up well and can serve as the protein source in a main dish. It’s quite the win-win situation for restaurants, as beans are typically less expensive than meat and they draw in the vegetarian and vegan crowds. Just remember, you need 1.5 cups of beans to equal 3 oz of animal protein.
Who didn’t know someone who tried cauliflower pizza this past year, are we right? Cauliflower has been making headway in the online foodie scene recently. With recipes like cauliflower pizza, fritters, and mashed “potatoes,” cauliflower is quickly becoming the “hidden” vegetable. Don’t let the white color fool you, cauliflower is packed with vitamins and minerals, and we just can’t wait to see the new recipes to come next year! Check out one of our favorite recipes here.
While we predicted gluten-free foods to be a trend in 2013, we have a feeling they’ll continue to rise in popularity come 2014. We, also, think that allergy-friendly foods, brands like Enjoy Life Foods, will become popular this year. With more and more food brands toting the gluten-free, peanut-free, and casein-free logos, we predict they’ll continue to grow. Food allergies seem to be on the rise, especially among school-aged children, so keep an eye out for kid and allergy-friendly foods.
Healthier Fast Food
Fast food continues to stay popular among Americans. We predict a surge of newer fast food options this year. Not only do we think (hope) that the main fast food companies, like McDonalds and Burger King will work to provide healthier food options for consumers, but we also think that some new options will emerge. In NYC alone, there are a number of healthy “fast food” joints popping up all over the place. With options like Hu Kitchen, Mulberry & Vine, and Fresh & Co the idea of grabbing a quick bite to eat may mean going to buy a quinoa-kale salad rather than a double cheeseburger.
Food Apps/Health Trackers
There’s no question that the app business has been drastically growing these past few years. We predict that it will continue to grow, especially in terms of food and health tracking apps. Apps like Fooducate, MyFitnessPal, and Lift have become quite trendy. We also think that their health tracker program counterparts will follow suit. Programs like fitbit, the Jawbone UP band, and Nike+ Fuel Band all track certain aspects of your health and allow you to sync with your computer (or phone) and track your health.
Who knew the word bacteria would be so trendy? 2013 was a big year for probiotics, and we don’t think that they will be going anywhere in 2014. With benefits ranging from improved digestion and preventing constipation, it’s no wonder these little bacteria get so much attention. It’s important to note that the research is still out on all their health effects, however, when on antibiotics or prescribed by a doctor, these microorganisms have been shown to balance the bacteria in your intestines. We’re looking forward to seeing more news and research on probiotics and any additional benefits they may have. Learn more by watching our video here.