2019 was a big year for food. We saw new research, new fads, de-bunking of old myths, Canada’s new food guide, and all kinds of suggestions for the best ways to eat. To help you save time from having to sift through all of the data, we’ve compiled all of the key learnings to have your best year yet with food. Here’s our list of the top 5 nutrition takeaways for 2020!
Eat real food
In 2019, a study conducted by Kevin Hall et., al. solidified the concept that ultra-processed foods can lead to an increased consumption of calories, and thus can lead to weight gain. For individuals trying to watch their weight/waistlines, focusing on healthy real foods will help contribute to more satiety and a caloric reduction.
Eat more plants
This year there has been a surge of new plant based products including lentil and bean-based pastas, cashew cheeses, and meat alternatives. While some of these products still remain heavily processed, the message still prevails to focus on real foods that are plant-based. Increasing fruits and vegetables, beans and lentils, and whole grains helps individuals lower their cardiovascular risk and optimize their nutrition profile.
Here are some great plant-based recipes to try in 2020:
- Spiced Sweet Potato Soup
- Instant Pot Moroccan Chickpea Stew
- Back Country Lentil Stew
- Beet and Lentil Patties
- Zesty Vegan Glory Bowl
Not sure how to start incorporating more plants into your diet? Check out this webinar on plant-based eating!
Find what you enjoy and stick to it
2019’s most popular diets included intermittent fasting, the ketogenic diet, the carnivore diet, and vegan/vegetarian diets among many others. But which one is really the best one?
Ultimately, there is never one way of eating that works for everyone. The best way of eating is one in which you enjoy and you can stick to. Whenever you are considering changing the way you eat, ask yourself if you can do this for the rest of your life, and will you enjoy it? It is always good to seek out the help from a Registered Dietitian to help make this a sustainable way of eating you can do for the rest of your life.
Eat together and enjoy your food
If you’re rushing to cram a meal into your mouth at your desk or before you head out the door in the morning, not only are you more likely to overeat, but you’ll be missing out on the enjoyment that food can bring. Sitting down, eating mindfully without distractions and enjoying our food is just as important as what we eat!
Live a little!
Indulging in a glass of wine or an ice cream cone is essential to the enjoyment of life! Focus on eating well most of the time (~80%) and do prioritize those mindful indulgences 20% of the time. Life. Is. Too. Short! Allowing yourself to indulge once in a while will help you avoid the guilt and to appreciate the finer things in life.
For more tips and tricks on how to incorporate these messages into your nutrition routine, don’t hesitate to reach out to your dietitian!