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Biggest Health Food Trends 2011

Best of 2011: The Year's Biggest Health Food Trends

When talking health food trends, last year was all: ancient grains, overnight oats, and gluten-free goodness. This year's biggest health food trends? Here's a hint: chia pets, the godfather of fitness, and pina coladas.

  1. Coconut milk: With recent studies calling into question the benefits of soy, people were on hunt this for a dairy-free alternative that wasn't linked to breast cancer. While almond and rice milk are old favorites, they lack the richness and sweetness that soy does. Enter: coconut milk beverage. Not as thick and rich as the kind of canned coconut milk used in curries, coconut milk beverage is great in smoothies and ice cream; it's also great over cereal, in coffee, or on its own.
  2. Pressed juice: It seems that Odwalla just isn't fresh enough! Not since the early days of Jack Lalanne has pressed juicing seen such a heyday. Once looked at as some sort of hippie juice, everyone — even Starbucks — is getting in on the pressed-juice craze. All of Hollywood seems to be juicing, too: stars like Gwyneth Paltrow, Nicole Richie, and Olivia Wilde are regularly spotted with their carrot-beet-apple-and-green-stuff blends. Are you a juice-head? Then definitely check out our recipes for pressed root veggie juice and green juice.
  3. Chia seeds: Move over flax, there's a new seed in town! Chia seeds (yep, the same kind used to decorate those wildly adored, '80s novelty gift, chia pets) are everywhere this year. Sprinkle them on yogurt, add them to a bread mix, or even toss them in a dressing — there really is no end to what chia seeds can be used for. The health claim to fame? Chia seeds are high in protein, fiber, calcium, antioxidants, and omega-3s — zing!

Source: Flickr user littlebluehen, Source

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