Digestive health may well emerge as a top health and wellness priority in the near future. To be more specific, fermented foods, prebiotics, and probiotics are going to be the top trending health products. These products are all known for their benefits to digestive health.
The underlying premise for the rise in popularity of probiotics, prebiotics, and fermented food is simple: what’s good for your digestive system is good for your overall health. Find out why you, too, should prioritize your digestive health.
#1 The Experts Know It
When it comes to nutrition, the ones that we know for sure we can trust are the registered dietitian nutritionists. In late 2017, more than two thousand registered dietitian nutritionists participated in the “What’s Trending in Nutrition” national survey. They predicted that fermented foods will overtake seeds as 2018’s number one superfood.
The results of the survey is particularly insightful, not just because nutritionists know all about nutrition but also because these are the professionals who are at the frontline and who know exactly what consumers want and are looking for. And they’re basically saying that consumers are going with their guts when it comes to nutrition choices.
Based on the survey results, the following are the top 10 superfoods that registered dietitian nutritionists predict will rule this year: fermented foods, avocado, seeds, nuts, green tea, ancient grains, kale, exotic fruits, coconut products, and salmon.
#2 The Nutraceutical Industry Knows It
Not only the registered dietitian nutritionists know that gut health is going to be the number one trend. The nutraceutical industry key players know it, too. For this year’s Vitafoods Europe event, more than two hundred professionals in the nutraceutical industry were asked the top three health benefit priority for their respective companies. Again, digestive health emerged as a top concern.
As these nutraceutical industry professionals represent manufacturers of dietary supplements, nutritional beverages, and functional foods all over the world, it’s possible that we will see a lot of new products promoting gut health this year and in the near future. Indeed, the probiotic segment of the industry is predicted to continue growing and to hit €53 billion by 2023.
#3 Americans Know It
In fact, yogurt, which is an example of a probiotic drink, almost hit $10 billion in sales in 2017 according to a market report. And this does not even include yogurt dips or frozen yogurt, just refrigerated yogurt and refrigerated yogurt drinks. And that’s just for yogurt sold through American retail channels like supermarkets, grocery stores, and drugstores. Yogurt sold in other channels were not even included in the sales computation, which means the actual total sales figures could even be much higher.
The rise in probiotic products sales is not really surprising, considering how much American consumers have taken to Greek yogurt and yogurt drinks. Moreover, the introduction of new yogurt flavors and new formats have further whetted Americans’ appetite for this delicious gut-healthy food.
In fact, Americans no longer treat yogurt as just a breakfast item anymore, rather it has become a snack, a drink you can take any time of the day, a dessert, or even a meal replacement. This also goes to show that American consumers are becoming more aware of digestive health and are moving towards clean eating.
Top Gut-Healthy Foods
Aside from yogurt, there are many other types of foods that are also great for digestive health. Prebiotic foods, or foods that feed the good bacteria in the gut and contribute to their growth, are also gaining popularity. Americans are also increasingly becoming aware of the benefits of fermented foods like kefir. If you’re interested in improving your gut health, take a look at this list of top gut-healthy foods.
- – contains inulin fiber which provides nourishment for good gut bacteria; contains a lot of antioxidants; helps in bile production contributing to fat digestion; can help relieve constipation; can provide relief from osteoarthritis
- – also contains inulin fiber; has many health benefits including antioxidant properties, anti-inflammatory properties, and helps reduce cholesterol levels
- – contains a lot of dietary fiber, folate, vitamin B, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, and vitamin K; also has protein, iron, and copper; a natural diuretic; contains flavonoids and polyphenols which are antioxidants; good for lowering blood pressure
- – contains inulin; packed with antioxidants and sulfur compounds; gives you protection from prostate and lung cancer; a great source of inulin; improves cardiovascular health; helps maintain bone health; enhances immune system
- – aside from being a natural source of inulin, garlic can also help treat diabetes, enlarged prostate or benign prostatic hyperplasia, flu, and high blood pressure; contains selenium, vitamin B6, vitamin C, and manganese; its allicin content is a powerful antioxidant
- – also called Mexican turnip, jicama has a lot of oligofructose inulin; good for diabetes due to its low glycemic index; high in carbohydrate dietary fiber; contains vitamin B, iron, magnesium, and manganese
- – has a lot of vitamin B folate; has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties; helps fight colorectal cancer; a natural source of inulin; contains vitamin K, vitamin B6, vitamin A, vitamin E, and vitamin C; has sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium and many other vitamins and minerals
- – packed with vitamin B12; contains calcium, biotin, folate, magnesium, and has approximately thirty different strains of good bacteria; has antibacterial properties; improves bone health and reduces risks of osteoporosis
- – a great probiotic; has antibacterial and antioxidant properties; good for cardiovascular health and can help manage type 2 diabetes
- – improves digestion; contains copper, vitamin B, vitamin E, vitamin K, and manganese; helps manage blood pressure; has anticancer properties
- – has antioxidant properties; can help with weight loss; immune system booster; has anti-cancer effects; helps reduce cholesterol levels; has anti-aging benefits and makes skin look radiant; a great source of probiotics
- – good for eye health; enhances immune system; has anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties; packed with fiber and probiotics; contains fiber, protein, vitamins B6, K, and C; has sodium, iron, and manganese