Entrants to the scene of healthy eating find themselves lost in the sea of information available in the digital world. In fact, the number one problem with weight watchers is that nobody knows what to do anymore. Should we eat only fruits and veggies, or go low-carb altogether? Should we quit meat cold-turkey and go vegan? And then the million-dollar question, should we count macros, or count calories?
Like always, internet has the answers. We are not claiming what works or what doesn’t but we definitely bring you the latest rundown on the trends that will be doing the rounds in 2021.
Rich in antioxidants like vitamin E, cold-pressed oils are a staple of weight-watchers. That they are best served cold has turned out to be a myth, with cold-pressed sesame oils having the highest smoking point. Also, these oils are rich in medium-chain triglycerides, which improve the cholesterol profile of the body.
Whether you’re looking to whip up a healthy salad dressing, make your pancakes a tad healthier, or give a keto twist to your morning coffee, cold-pressed oils are the way to go.
An ultra-restrictive diet plan for many, yet a refreshing way to reset your feeding habits and understand how your body really responds to the things you eat is the Whole30 diet. Basically, all comfort foods you bank on- like booze, sugar, dairy, and even grains are out. What’s in? Lots of veggies, lean proteins, fruits, fish, poultry, and thankfully, coffee!
We can’t say this enough but anti-inflammatory foods and any diet that advocates them are here to stay. Mainly because the link between inflammation, insulin resistance and obesity has been recently uncovered. Eating anti-inflammatory foods first thing in the morning improves blood sugar control, and eases gut digestion, thereby boosting your weight loss efforts. So swap your morning capuchhinos with lemon-ginger water, and grab a beetroot smoothie before your breakfast bagel.
Slashing out food groups and complete meals for weight loss can lead to nutritional deficiencies. In that light, juicing can be a great, low-calorie trick to supplement your diet. However, the trouble is when you consume fruit juices rather than whole fruits. Or replace meals with vegetable juices.
For one, any weight you’ll lose will be water weight and will bounce back once you resume eating normally. And second, there’s NO evidence to support the detox benefits of juice fasts. To top it all, juicing whole fruits eliminates fiber out of the end product, unleashing the fructose to wreak havoc into your liver and get your blood sugar levels soaring.
The solution? We suggest juicing green veggies with a piece of fruit or dates. And have it as a snack please, or not as your lunch.
Vegans today have come up with substitutes for practically every meat out there, from beef to ground turkey, shrimp to eggs. But at the end of the day, they are after all packaged foods and packaged foods are high on additives, saturated fats and excess sodium. Moreover, there’s a real danger with stepping into the forbidden territory of processed foods with vegan meats. In a bid to replicate the same nutritional profile as their meat counterparts, manufacturers don’t shy away from steeping up on all sorts of additives and saturated fats into their vegan meat products. In fact as of 2019, the plant-based meat industry was estimated at a whopping $12.1 billion.
The solution? Make your own meatless burgers with beetroot or chickpea patty. And remember, if you can’t trace back the food you’re eating to its origin or break it down into individual components, just know it’s not in the edible category.
Low-carb swaps to everyday food
Proponents of low-carb diets put all kinds of carbs in the same category, which means carbs are carbs whether you get them from your apples, cookies, or broccoli. And that’s ignorance because it’s the processed carbs that you’re looking to avoid with any diet. Nevertheless, some people have sworn by low-carb for getting past a weight loss plateau, or building muscle with keto. However you see it as, low-carb alternatives are here to stay. We suggest looking out for cauliflower rice, sweet potato wedge chips, lettuce wraps in place of tortillas, and flour made from ground almonds.
Healthy packaged snacks
The industry of healthy packaged snacks is expected to cross the $30 billion mark in the next five years. As a smart and savvy shopper, the key is to focus on the word ‘packaged’ rather than ‘healthy’. Just make sure that sugar is nowhere in the first five ingredients listed. Of course, your best bet would be to make them from scratch at home. That way you know exactly what goes into your body. There are plenty of wonderful three-ingredient recipes for granola bars and oatmeal cookies out there. Bring variety to the mix with crunchy roasted chickpeas.
Bulletproof coffee or Keto coffee
Bulletproof coffee is nothing but coffee charged with a dash of MCT oil. It’s known to kill mid-morning cravings, improve cognitive function and even help with weight loss. Just one shot can go up to 500 calories, meaning you can forget about having a full-fledged breakfast if you’re calorie conscious. Of course, the diversity of nutrients it offers comes nothing close to an overnight oatmeal bowl or say, a fruit salad, but it may be a nice way to spice up your morning capucchino every once in a while.
Japanese style of eating
There has been a growing appreciation of the clean, nutritionally dense Japanese style of eating. The idea of going back to the basics, something that the centenarians of Japan have been eating for years and that have helped them live a long, active life free of chronic lifestyle diseases is definitely appealing in a world that’s going crazy over information overload. In simpler words, this means having a balanced diet with lots of fresh fish, veggies, whole grains and even meat. The more color you add to your plate, the better. And keep portion sizes small so that you eat till you’re only about 80% full.
Who doesn’t want an effortless, scientifically backed style of eating that actually doesn’t make you feel deprived/ malnourished! Well, time-restricted feeding is just that. Instead of restricting calories, you restrict your feeding time to a certain period of the day and that’s that. Results are most favourable with the 16 to 18 hour fasting window; also consuming your high-calorie meals during the early part of the day, say by noon 3 pm makes it easier for your body to complete the digestion before sleep and rely on stored fat for the rest part of the fasting period
We have a whole article on how calorie-counting apps are mostly a sham. And we have good reason to believe so. But like it or not, they are here to reign the whole of 2021. All thanks to the neurotic calorie-counting vendetta that is aggressively pushed around by stalwarts in the fitness industry. Don’t let an app tell you what to eat. It’s your body, you know best. There’ll be days when you’ll want to binge on cookies all day and some days soup will be all you crave for. That’s okay, you CAN eat for your mind some times as long you eat for your body like 80% of the time
Flexitarianism is a flexible eating approach where you replace some part of your meat-rich diet with plant-based alternatives. It’s more environmentally sustainable and great for those who don’t want to quit carbs cold turkey. Just make sure you don’t quit lean meat such as turkey or chicken. Keep processed meats like bacon and salami out of the equation and instead opt for legumes, beans and nuts to fulfil your protein requirements. Also, ensure to load up on veggies for your daily iron intake.
All trends work in the short while; none of these trends work in the long run. Ultimately, it all comes down to what you’re comfortable with and can sustain indefinitely. Just two things to keep in mind- don’t eat anything that your grandmother didn’t eat, and don’t compromise on taste for the sake of health.