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Physical Wellness

Top 5 Diet Trends to Watch for in 2021 and Why They Matter

The coronavirus has changed the way many people shop for food and eat. With a renewed focus on staying healthy, different types of diet trends will always be a hot topic. Now health is at the forefront of many conversations. From foods that enhance your immunity to sustainable weight loss methods, here are five of the biggest diet trends to watch for in 2021. 

1. Biohacking

Biohacking is also known as citizen or do-it-yourself biology. When it comes to nutrition, biohacking focuses on how your food interacts with your genes. The idea is that you can optimize your genetic expression by testing how nutrients react with your body. 

Calculating Macros & Biohacking for Weight Loss

Biohacks promise weight loss, improvements in metabolic markers, and enhanced brain function. In general, when you biohack your diet, you make small changes to improve your health and well-being. That’s not to say that some people don’t take it too far. Biohackers sometimes tend to go overboard, and this can go wrong. 

2. Health at Every Size and Mindful Eating

Inclusivity in the wellness world is a growing issue. This next type of diet trend focuses on Health at Every Size (HAES). It’s not necessarily about being thin, but about being happy and healthy in your own skin. There’s a noticeable shift from size to mindfulness and creating a mind-body connection in everything you do.

Close up photo of woman holding grilled salmon trout fillet steak with garnish as a types of diet.
Health At Every Size Is Also A Strategy For Eating Disorder Recovery (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Instead of focusing on weight, you focus on foods and behaviors that promote health and well-being. That means eating plenty of vegetables, getting a good night’s sleep, and moving your body. It promotes healthy outcomes by adopting healthy behaviors. 

Health at Every Size is also a strategy for eating disorder recovery. It’s about switching from a weight-centric view so that you can really understand your relationship with food. This approach to eating takes out the negative aspects of certain foods and removes a restrictive mentality that often leads to a cycle of burnout and relapse. 

3. Ketogenic Diet

The ketogenic diet is still one of the most popular types of diets in the United States for short-term weight loss. With a ketogenic diet, you follow a very low-carb, high-fat diet. By reducing your carb intake, it puts your body into a state of ketosis. During ketosis, your body starts burning fat for energy.

Ketogenic selection of food sources.
By Reducing Your Carb Intake, It Puts Your Body Into A State Of Ketosis (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Interestingly, several studies show that the ketogenic diet can reduce or prevent seizures in children in a clinical environment. 

If you’re thinking of starting the keto diet, it’s a good idea to weigh your options. Although the ketogenic diet continues to rank highly in yearly diet trends, it’s not sustainable in the long term. As it promises immediate weight loss and cuts off an entire food group, it can be considered a fad diet. It’s also important to know that the keto diet can cause fiber deficiency and gastrointestinal malfunction. 

4. Sugar-Free Diet

Not all sugar is created equal. Technically, all carbohydrates are “sugar,” too. Your body breaks down carbs into simple sugars before absorbing them into the bloodstream. When talking about a sugar-free diet, it’s pinpointing specific sugars like:

  • High fructose corn syrup 
  • Soda
  • Sweet and alcoholic beverages
White sugar on a pink background
Your Body Breaks Down Carbs Into Simple Sugars Before Absorbing Them Into The Bloodstream (Image Source: Shutterstock)

Eating too much sugar can contribute to weight gain and is one of the greatest threats to cardiovascular disease. Being overweight or obese increases your risk of developing health problems like heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers. By taking a sugar-free approach to your diet, you’re cutting out lots of processed foods, calorie-laden drinks, and junk food. 

When you cut out sugar, it can offer several benefits like reducing inflammation, increasing insulin sensitivity, improving appetite management, and decreasing cravings. Even though the diet focuses on cutting out food, the goal is to improve health markers. It’s not weight-centric; it’s about developing a healthier version of you and a heart-healthy diet.  

5. Gluten-Free Diet

A gluten-free diet is a standard for people who have a gluten allergy or celiac disease. If a celiac person eats gluten, it can damage the hairy protrusions in the stomach and intestinal tract. These help your body to absorb nutrients. Any damage to the protrusions would cause nutrient malabsorption, and therefore a nutrient deficiency.

Selection of gluten free food.
If A Celiac Person Eats Gluten, It Can Damage The Hairy Protrusions In The Stomach And Intestinal Tract (Image Source: Shutterstock)

So, what about non-celiacs?

When food has a gluten-free label, it doesn’t automatically mean that it’s healthy. Just like other foods, gluten-free foods still have sugar and calories. It makes sense that, if you eat them in excess, it can lead to weight gain. Eating whole grains is actually linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. Therefore, if you eliminate all whole grains from your diet, it could increase your risk for cardiac events. 

Sustainable and Healthy Weight Loss

Every year, different types of diet trends come and go. But now, there’s a clear move toward diets that focus on positive health outcomes and the mind-body connection. While there will always be a diet that promises quick and immediate weight loss, sustainable and healthy weight loss is a journey and not a quick-fix.

women jogging together on city bridge. Healthy girls friends running on the city street to lose weight.
Sustainable And Healthy Weight Loss Is A Journey And Not A Quick-fix (Image Source: Shutterstock)

You can see the change in the diet market with the weight loss app Noom. The affordable app creates a more personalized experience that encourages a shift in the weight loss mindset. As with most weight loss programs, you have to log food data, but this is a relatively straightforward process. 

By adopting healthy behaviors, you can achieve positive health outcomes. Habits like drinking plenty of water, finding ways to de-stress, and focusing on your health instead of your calories can help you thrive. 

Finding a Diet that Works for You

The best diet for you is the one that allows you to eat a variety of healthy foods and makes you feel great. It can often be tempting to go for a quick fix or cut out a food group, but this doesn’t always last. 

There is no single diet that works for everyone. You are unique. The types of diet that work for one person may not for another. Finding a diet that works for your lifestyle, goals, and mindset is a journey. The bottom line is that a healthy eating plan is about feeling physically and mentally happy.

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