Kale is so yesterday!
Each New Year, opinions roll out from the tech industry, home décor experts, fashion gurus and even foodies dictating what the next hot trends will be for the upcoming year. How does anyone know what will be popular in days, weeks, even months?
Well, I’ve spent countless hours on top of the latest nutrition research, the hottest trends and the most acclaimed recipe books getting a feel for what's hot and what's not, and here’s what 2015 holds in store for us in food and health!
You’ll find it hiding in your pizza crust, disguised as rice, roasted and smothered in sriracha sauce to taste like hot wings and mashed up like taters! What can’t this little white cruciferous veggie do? Most people think the lack of color means it’s void of nutrition, but, truth be told, cauliflower provides a good source of antioxidants, helps reduce inflammation, supports our cardiovascular and digestive systems and can easily take on the flavors of a dish. It's the blank canvas of meal planning.
Ever since the low carb craze hit, we’ve been trying to figure out how to enjoy a nice hot pasta dish without the guilt. While shirataki noodles look promising, they just don’t seem to settle well in the stomach, nor do they provide that same mouth feel of a traditional noodle. A new gadget went mainstream this past Christmas and is taking center stage in multiple cookbooks: the spiralizer! Spiralizers make it easy to turn delicious veggies like zucchini into fancy salad toppings, slaws, noodles and other main dish ingredients.
3. Smoothie bowls
Or, shall we say, NutriBlast Bowls! Food bloggers have been posting beautiful photos of these delicious liquid bowls and I have a hunch the trend will pick up in 2015. Check out this beauty from The Simple Veganista.
4. New Greens: Watercress, microgreens, sprouts
Kale has had PLENTY of time in the spotlight. It’s time to move onto other nutritional powerhouses; some of which actually have more beneficial properties than kale. According to a list compiled by researchers at William Patterson University, watercress tops the list of 41 “powerhouse fruits and vegetables.” We all know it’s important to get in a variety of leafy greens, so, next time, try some watercress, microgreens, or sprouts to switch things up a bit.
5. Local, grass-fed, non-GMO, pasture-raised
Organic isn’t the only buzzword we need to pay attention to, anymore! We’re becoming more conscious about what is in our food, as well as where our food is sourced and manufactured. No longer are the days when we can just assume we are served quality food. Instead, 2015 will continue the push for more local, grass-fed, non-GMO and pasture-raised options. Produce, as well as meats and eggs, are best and most nutritious when fresh, not tarnished with added hormones, or bred from animals that have consumed genetically-modified feed.
6. Grain aware (ancient, gluten-free, protein-rich, grain-free)
According to Melissa Abbot, director of culinary insights at The Hartman Group, millet is the next quinoa. It is gluten-free, high in protein, loaded with fiber and helps reduce inflammation. You can also find it locally from Colorado’s Great Plains. We have come to accept that certain grains have a place in our diet. Ancient grains like amaranth, faro, spelt, kamut, sorghum, freekeh, teff, and millet will begin to sprout up in your breakfast porridge, cereals, granolas, salads, side dishes, restaurant meals and bread products in 2015.
7. Full on Fat
While I’m not stoked about the idea of a huge slab of butter in coffee popularized by the Bulletproof coffee diet, I am happy to see that we are finally getting over the fat phobia. Time magazine’s June 2014 cover told us to “Eat Butter” and dispelled the myth that saturated fats cause heart disease. Hopefully this will segue into incorporating more healthy, high quality fats into our day-to-day food repertoire. Natural fats from foods like nuts, seeds, avocado, cold-pressed coconut oil are good for you. Both saturated and unsaturated fats are an important macronutrient that helps absorb fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. It is also important for cell membrane structure, energy production, heart health and plush skin.
8. Recipe Apps
If you’re a foodie like me, you’ve probably seen that all of your favorite food bloggers are coming out with a recipe app. Check out some of my favorites like Deliciously Ella and The Balanced Blonde. We’ve also got you covered with our NutriLiving Recipes app for Android and iPhone.
With most of us nose deep into our phones, it only makes sense that we’d have access to recipes while at the grocery store. #whydidntithinkofthat
9. Insect Protein
Our love affair with protein continues. Now we’ve taken it to a Fear Factor level with high-end restaurants serving up fried cricket and scorpions. Not into eating insect whole? You can find cricket protein flour in food bars like Exo and Chapul. While it’s new to the United States, some countries have been serving up these little critters in some form or another. Insects are a sustainable source of protein, requiring less land and water resources than livestock and producing less methane gas. They also provide a more compact protein profile with about double the amount of protein per gram found in beef. If you’re up for it, give it a whirl!
10. Bone broth
Move over juice cleanses, bone broth is the new it “juice" - at least while temperatures are so frigid. Based on an ancient tradition, bone broth is made by boiling poultry, beef, or fish bones for hours until they break down releasing collagen protein and calcium, which may help with our own bones, joints and skin. It’s touted as a miracle food to improve digestion, reduce inflammation and joint pain, help boost the immune system as well as add shine to your hair and strength to your nails. However, little actual science has been done on this trendy elixir. If you live or are visiting New York, you can pick up a cup by Chef Marco Canora at his take-out window, Brodo, or you can make it yourself. Here’s some tips on how. We expect to see more bone broth shops pop up in 2015.
11. Fermented foods
Although this trend hit in 2014 when the health buzz around good gut bacteria hit the airwaves, it'll only get bigger this year. Kimchi, sauerkraut, kefir, kombucha, miso, tempeh and other fermented foods provide beneficial bacteria to help aid digestion and boost immunity. Donna Gates, International best-selling author of The Body Ecology Diet and one of our NutriLiving contributors, provides a wealth of knowledge on how fermented foods help heal the body. Check out some of her work here.
Which bandwagon are you jumping on? Just hop in the driver's seat and take charge to enhance your health and wellbeing!