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New Developments in Nutrition for 2008

Feb 29, 2008
A new year always brings new developments in nutrition. Last year, it was antioxidants and trans fats, and this year it is phytonutrients and vitamin D. Some trends have remained the same, like the focus on better nutrition for children and fighting diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. These two trends in particular have benefited from more research and more exposure in the media in the past year.

Five trends to keep your eye on in 2008 are:

1) Earth-friendly/ethical eating

Environmental awareness has skyrocketed in recent years, and this year consumers are concerned about how much damage their food is doing to the environment. Due to the amount of plastic that ends up in landfills, expect bottled water popularity to go down as the trend swings more towards filtered pitchers of water, which are less harmful to the environment.

Consumer awareness has already led to "eco labels" which are currently on more than 100 products. These labels state how many food miles a certain product has traveled and whether the product was wild-caught or dolphin-safe. Animal welfare and fair trade are two other trends to watch as the world continues to be more environmentally and ethically conscious.

2) Locally grown foods

Environmentally aware consumers will be doing their shopping at farmer's markets this year to help support the environment. Buying locally grown foods also supports your health because the food is unprocessed. This has economic benefits as well, because consumers will be contributing to their local farmers. Recent years have brought awareness to the health benefits of fruit, vegetables, and whole grains, all of which you can find at your local farmer's market.

3) Digestive health

This year brings many products with prebiotics and probiotics, which are bacteria to help digestion. Live and active cultures were found predominantly in yogurt, but we will see them introduced into other products such as cheese, ice cream, milk, and juice throughout the year. High fiber is also essential for good gut health, so fiber will continue to be one of those highly-touted essentials for all diets in 2008.

4) Phytonutrients

All consumers will know what phytonutrients are by the end of 2008. Phytonutrients are natural plant compounds that help build a strong and healthy immune system. These plant compounds are found mainly in fruits and vegetables. Some examples of phytonutrients are flavonoids, luetin (found in spinach and kale), and lycopene (found in tomatoes). Fruits and vegetables are also good sources of vitamin C and vitamin A, which also help boost your immune system.

5) Brain food

Omega-3 fatty acids are a driving force in 2008. Studies have shown numerous
health benefits of the Omega-3s, including benefits to the brain. Omega-3s, as well as other food compounds, have been found to help improve memory, sharpen concentration, and may even reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease. New products will hit the shelves as more information becomes available about the brain benefits of these compounds.

There are several other trends that we will see in 2008, some of which are: focus on heart health, healthier children's foods, removed additives from foods, and more buzz about the health benefits of vitamin D. The common denominators among all of these trends are fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Including these in your diet is a must for 2008, as the health benefits continue to increase. Have a healthy and nutritious 2008!
About the Author
Michael Greeves, CEO and founder of Hyperstrike, wanted to develop an affordable fitness program for individuals and athletes that could be customized to their personal abilities and goals, and be delivered to any one, any where, any time. Learn more about the HyperStrike Workout.
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