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Pooja Vig's Nutrition and Health Trends for 2019

The Keto craze will continue

2018 was truly the year of the ketogenic diet and its momentum isn't showing any signs of slowing. This high-fat, low-carb way of eating was developed in the 1920s as a way of managing epilepsy in kids. So, why has it suddenly gone mainstream? At The Nutrition Clinic, we don't see this as a sudden shift but the result of an ongoing conversation around the benefits of certain fats and the problems with too much sugar in the diet. Several studies a few years ago showed a weak link between fat and heart disease, paving the way for the keto diet rage.  What's in store in 2019? Ketogenic diets require a lot of planning (70% of your calories need to come from fat). We can expect to see more packaged foods marketed as keto-friendly in 2019. Coffee creamers and on-the-go drinks and snacks powered with healthy fats like MCT oil will enter the aisles. We also see an increase in intermittent fasting -- which is an effective hack to get the body into a ketogenic state.  Keto diets are not for all, and there are many ways of doing it wrong. We see people who come in after jumping on the keto or intermittent fasting bandwagon only to find that their energy plummets and digestion goes or a toss. We also question its safety for people with strong heart disease risk factors. We have created a systematic way of approaching ketogenic diets (and fasting) -- taking into account genetics, gut health, stress hormones and blood sugar levels to create a comprehensive approach. 


Got Mylk? 

Cow's milk alternatives will continue to grow -- expect to see not only milk replacements but also more variety of dairy-free yogurt, ice-cream and cheese. Camels milk will be something we see more of on our shelves (currently available at Mustafa and little Farms). It is easier to digest and helps with allergies. But the big growth will be from the plant based milk alternatives. Oat milk -- the new almond milk in our opinion -- is a great alternative for those who enjoy their lattes. We see it taking the spotlight in 2019 -- it has a creamy slightly sweet taste and is the only acceptable alternative for a creamy cup of coffee. Still, it may not be for all -- we run food sensitivity testing on most of our clients an many people react to oats. Other milks that we think will line our shelves in 2019? Pea, macadamia, barley, flax and hemp!


Baking with Alternative flours We expect we will see new and interesting gluten and grain free flours beyond almond and coconut flours. Many of these flours are from this part of the world and have been used in traditional diets here. Green banana flour, for example, made from unripe bananas are great for baking (there is a cafe in Bali that bakes using only green banana flour, and the results look delicious). Another one is cassava flour made from the cassava root. Like green banana, it is gluten-, grain- and nut-free making it perfect for people on a paleo or auto-immune diet. Another newcomer is jackfruit flour which is rich in fiber and great for balancing blood sugar levels. 


Personalized nutrition Advanced functional medicine testing along with nutri-genomic knowledge will mean that we get past standard diet books and into nutrition becoming truly personalized. Availability of tests that uncover food sensitivities, micro-nutrient deficiencies and a mapping of your gut micro-biome will mean that we eat with greater awareness of what precisely we need. Added to the mix, we see huge growth in wearable tech that allow us to track our biomarkers. The net result is that individuals will become more empowered to manage and track their wellness and health.