Top nutrition trends for 2011 - what will you be eating?

By: Emma Stirling, Dietitian

Are you strapped in and ready? Another year has rolled around and we are soon to see the latest buzz in nutrition. With such a fast changing science the trendsters have been hard at it with their nutritious crystal balls, trying to predict what will be gracing our dinner plates and supermarket aisles? Let's take a closer look at the emerging trends in 2011 and how you can get that health edge, right now.

Go gluten free, expertly
Gluten free is going mainstream as the latest weight loss fad. More and more people are dabbling in gluten free products without the important steps to see a health professional for a diagnosis of coeliac disease or intolerance. Remember you are actually doing your health a disadvantage by cutting out nutritious wholegrains like wheat, oats and freekeh unless you have been advised and educated. It can leave your diet unbalanced and will not miraculously melt body fat away.

Shake that salt habit
As the Australian division of the World Action to Stop Hypertension (AWASH) celebrates a successful, awareness raising 2010, get set for more and more messages to cut back on table salt and salty ingredients like soy sauce. And get set for a whole new trolley load of products labeled 'salt reduced' as you learn to love fresh herbs, citrus and other low salt, flavour enhancers.

Pep up with protein
Usually connected with muscle building, gym junkies, the power of protein is now with healthy weight management. Research shows protein to be the most satisfying of all the main or macro nutrients. Adding a lean protein source to each meal, whether that be from the meat or dairy group or alternative like tofu, legumes and nuts, will keep you feeling fuller for longer. You'll delay the time to your next meal or snack and boost your weight loss efforts.

Plant yourself into Monday
Actively championed by Sir Paul McCartney, the Meat Free Monday movement is getting global traction through the help of twitter and social media. What's it all about? Well to help save the planet & boost your health, you commit to a vegetarian evening meal every Monday. Check out the recipes for inspiration.

Drink up, naturally
Roll over goji and acai berry with your wild antioxidant claims, and welcome a new range of functional beverages. Following huge success in the US, the new buzz drinks on the block are predicted to be plain and natural coconut water. Get the full nutrition scoop here.

GYO & be a locavore
Do you live in an apartment and have no room to grow your own (GYO)? Think again. With roof top gardens and bee hive nesting in the city, by the end of 2011, rest assured, you will tend your herb pot on the window sill or kaffir lime tree on the balcony. That's just after you've returned from the local farmers' market or community garden project. Read more about loving your farmer and the power of food provenance for health.

Cook like you've never cooked before
With the popularity of reality cooking shows in 2010, get set for a surge this year as we enter the lives of a prison kitchen and sort through iron chef and kitchen rules. And with a growing number of iphone apps, in store recipes campaigns and TV quick tips, there is really no better time to get cooking with it. Just make sure you do get off the couch and cook, and choose your recipe source well. To stay healthy and wise, go for those with a nutritious makeover like the fabulous 'swap that for this' videos" selection right here

So do you agree readers? Or have you got your own crystal ball predictions to share? We'd love to hear your comments below.

Emma Stirling is an Accredited Practising Dietitian, nutrition writer and editor of The Scoop on Nutrition a new blog written by expert dietitians.

You can follow and connect with Emma on Twitter


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