We’ve covered gluten-free, Whole30 and juicing as food trends to keep an eye on. They’re only a few of the many trends available to consumers. Another two diets to watch for are the Raw Food Diet and the Blue Zones Diet. Are they worth the hype? Read on to see what you think.
The Raw Food Diet
According to U.S. News and World Report, this diet aims to help followers reach their peak health by incorporating foods that haven’t been cooked, which allegedly preserve the high levels of enzymes, proteins and nutrients. Amidst other diets that focus on supplements, powders and pills, this can seem like a reasonable choice: It focuses on incorporating whole fruits and vegetables – usually organic – along with nuts and plenty of water.
However, when users eat only raw, they are likely consuming half the number of calories they need in a given day, U.S. News reported. Cooked and baked foods, such as animal protein and bread, can pack more calories and also help you feel fuller for longer periods of time. It can also take more time to prepare the raw-version of many dishes, as they can require sprouting, germinating and dehydrating. It can be difficult to carve out time during the week to prepare meals when you’re on the raw diet. While there are plenty of recipes available, it may be easier for consumers to borrow inspiration from the Raw Food Diet and incorporate more fruits and veggies into their diet.
The raw food diet still incorporates animal protein sources, like salmon.
The Blue Zones Diet
TODAY.com profiled this diet, which earns its name from National Geographic’s Daniel Buettner. He found that countries in these “blue zones” have populations that live long and healthy lives up to 100 years long. The secret to longevity, he found, is a diet rich in beans, greens, grains and nuts.
These populations “know how to make them taste good and they know how to optimize them for their health,” Buettner said to TODAY.
This diet also takes a more holistic approach to health, NPR noted. Exercise is a critical part of the Blue Zones lifestyle. Staying active can keep stress levels low as well as managing body weight – both of which are essential to living longer. You can take this diet as a guideline to cut out processed foods from your own diet. The drawbacks? It can be difficult to change your environment – including your community – in order to help you live longer. However, you can make time to take a deep breath and get moving after a tough day at work. Your body will thank you!
While it’s tempting to completely change your diet to look and feel your best, it may lead to only short-term results. Instead, you can take the guiding principles from both these diets – step away from processed foods, add more produce and stay active – to keep healthy. Here’s to living long and well!