Researchers constantly conduct studies on the influence of certain food products on human health. The results announced by them lead to the changes in nutrition trends. The products that constituted a base of menus of healthy food promoters only a few years ago are no longer so popular, as now other products and nutrition theories are at the top. What is fashionable to eat in the year 2017/18? These are the most up-to-date trends:
Functional food is a term used to determine food products of natural origin – also the enriched or modified ones – which not only provide nutrients, but also positively influence health state. This effect may consist in the improvement of general physical and mental well-being and also in counteracting various diseases. It is important to notice positive effects eating such amounts of these products that are consistent with the rules of healthy nutrition. Functional food may be divided due to its composition and use, but it is possible to classify one product to a few groups. Dietary supplements are not functional foods.
Although functional food has its place on the list of up-to-date nutrition trends, its history comes from the 80s of the last century. For the first time, the inhabitants of Asian countries became interested in such food and the first research on functional products was carried out by the Japanese. Popularization of this topic in Europe is a result of the actions taken in the 90s by the European Union. The research program was then started which led to defining the term of functional food and determining the rules, according to which it should be researched.
Bioactive substances that are used in functional food include:
- Prebiotics – stimulate the development of bacterial flora in the intestines
- Probiotics– support the immune system, counteract colorectal cancer and constipations
- Dietary fiber – positively influences the functions of intestines and prevents constipations
- Vitamins with antioxidant effect
Enriching food is not always voluntary. In certain cases legal regulations oblige the producers to use certain additives due to the necessity of preventing nutritional deficits in the society. The example of the obligatory product enrichment is iodized salt. When applying the diet based on functional food, the problem may be the lack of legal regulations, which sometimes is the cause of abusing this term.
Superfoods is a term which for now does not have a precise definition. However, it may be said that these are food products that stand out when it comes to the content of nutrients valuable for human beings. Currently, the products coming from exotic countries enjoy greatest popularity.
The interest in salvia hispanica is constantly increasing. One of the most important advantages of chia seeds is high content of dietary fiber, healthy fats and protein, which ensures long feeling of satiation. It is also vital that salvia hispanica contains little carbohydrates and its culinary application is quite wide. Chia seeds may be used among others to prepare diet desserts.
The reason for the popularity of this tea is the fact that it contains the substances reducing the size of fat cells and lowering the concentration of triglycerides. According to many dieticians it is one of the best drinks that we can use during the process of weight loss.
Small fruit descending from the region of Cambogia, more and more often appearing on the shelfs of EU shops. They are sweet, contain few calories and little fat and simultaneously they provide vitamins and minerals, especially vitamin C. Moreover, according to the newest research, lychee extract neutralizes free radicals very well.
Eragrostis tef is a grain which is a rich source of amino acids. It contains even more of them than quinoa and additionally it provides a lot of fiber and iron. As a result, it perfectly satisfies appetite and reduces the risk of anemia. The fact that teff is gluten free with wide spectrum of culinary application is also not meaningless.
This fruit resembles coconut in appearance, while in taste – chocolate combined with fruit. It is the source of amino acids, vitamins B and vitamin C. Cupuacu may be eaten alone and also used as a component of desserts and cocktails.
Healthy nutrition freaks more and more often reach for healthy and easily digestible soups. This is a fashion that came to Europe from the United States, where it turned out to be serious competition to the juice diet. Soups are more filling than juices, therefore they satisfy hunger more effectively and still maintain their important advantage which is ease of digestion. What is more, soups work well both in the spring-summer season as well as in the fall-winter season. On chilly days, hot soups perfectly warm up, while during heats, a portion of cold soup ensures refreshment. Soups are not boring, as they may be prepared in many varieties with modifications. You just need to add a new vegetable or other seasoning to give your meal a totally new taste.
Probiotic products have enjoyed a lot of interest for a long time among people who have tried to follow healthy diet. Last year, probiotic chocolate was popular, while now it is replaced with probiotic water. It differs from plain water in the fact, that it contains an additive of bacterial flora. Because of the content of simple sugars, this water is not recommended to diabetics.
Melon water also deserves attention. It appeared on the EU market in the year 2016. It is a drink, which perfectly refreshes and hydrates, therefore it is worth drinking especially during hot days. Its use is promoted by such stars as Taylor Swift or Beyoncé. Melon water is also rich in vitamin C as well as in potassium, magnesium, calcium and lycopene, i.e. a natural antioxidant.