Words by Lisa Hughes
December 28th, 2016
2016 was the year meditation went mainstream, we all went coconut oil crazy, we swapped macchiatos for matcha and ‘burnout‘ reached buzzword status. So what lies ahead in the world of wellness for 2017?
As well as the anti-inflammation diet we covered recently, here are some of the top health and wellness trends you’ll be hearing a lot about in 2017.
Dream meditation – Take your meditation to the next level with lucid dreaming. Sounds a bit Inception but dream meditation aims to tap into your subconscious for answers and also tackle your sleep and anxiety woes. It’s all about reaching a new level of consciousness in your dream state through mindfulness techniques. Also on the sleep front, expect to hear more about sound baths, a type of sound therapy using meditation and regularly ‘played’ bowls. Works a treat for insomniacs.
Feeding your microbiome – As we predicted in our recent post on gut health, feeding your gut bacteria will become more of a health priority in 2017 and beyond. Good gut health means no sugar and processed food and more fermented food like sauerkraut, kombucha and natural yoghurt with live cultures.
Clean labelling – With the move away from processed food – an essential part of the anti-inflammation diet – more of us want to know what’s actually in what we’re eating. The consensus among health and obesity campaigners is that food labels are jargon-laden and written for food scientists, not starving ladies who are scouring the supermarket after work. In 2017, the push will be for clear packaging so you can see at a glance what’s in the salted caramel cupcake you’re being tempted by.
Fat chance – After years of being demonised, fat started to get a reprieve in 2016 and this is set to continue in 2017, as more in-the-know nutrition organisations come out saying that fat isn’t the culprit we thought it was. To be clear, by fat we mean avocados, salmon, walnuts and cashews, not cakes, cream and butter. More food companies such as dairy producers are moving away from low-fat options, which tend to be pumped full of additives, sugar and chemicals, and are going for the full-fat version. If you’re watching your waistline, ditch the low-fat, diet version and just eat less of the full-fat one.
Cannabis (yes, really) – Legal marijuana is the fastest growing industry in the US and Forbes magazine predicts the cannabis business will grow to $22 billion by 2020. Cannabis is increasingly appearing on restaurant menus (hello, brownies), in chocolate bars, and more foods. But we’re not talking about getting high. Used medicinally for 3000 years, the purported health benefits of cannabis oil include easing chemo-related pain in cancer patients and it’s also used to reduce stress, increase appetite and aid sleep. Super-stylish DJ Chelsea Leyland has recently been talking about how CBD (medical marijuana oil) has helped her live with epilepsy.
Plant power – Gone are the days when protein meant eating a furry friend. More people are opting for healthier, sustainable plant protein which skips the saturated fat, cholesterol and dubious use of antibiotics in meat, not to mention the WHO labelling processed meat as carcinogenic recently. Yikes. In the last year, protein really entered the mainstream, with high protein bars side-by-side with Mars bars in the supermarket. Expect more of this in 2017, with plant proteins moonlighting in everything from pasta made from beans and lentils to pea protein powder in ice cream. Time to give your veggie friends a pat on the back for being ahead of the curve (you can read all about going vegan here).
Recovery – On the fitspo front, the year ahead will see less focus on oppressive cardio and pushing yourself to the limit. Instead of boasting about hitting the gym six nights a week by posting cute gym selfies, a greater emphasis will be placed on recovery and letting your body adjust to your new fitness routine. Without giving your body time to recover, you’re destined to hit the ceiling and undo all your hard work.
Nutritional yeast – Yes, Marmite. Love it or loathe it, sticky nutritional yeast is high in those oft-overlooked B vitamins and adds a…shall we say distinctive flavour to everything from pasta dishes to cheese on toast. For a nutritious snack, bake some yeast covered cashews. (Warning: they’re seriously addictive!) This year, expect vegan favourite nutritional yeast to hit the mainstream. You heard it here first.
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