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Health Food Trends of 2010: Overnight Oats, Ancient Grains, Gluten-Free, Vegetarian Diets

Health Food Trends of 2010

With obesity rates on the rise, eating healthy was a big topic this year, one that we hope translates into action in 2011. And even though health food is a small niche of the food market, there were some definite trends in 2010:

  • Overnight Oats: Overnight oats aren't new, but this satisfying breakfast was everywhere in 2010. It felt like there was a new overnight oats recipe in our Healthy Recipe community group every week (like this pumpkin pie overnight oats dish), and all of our favorite bloggers — especially Oh She Glows — seemed to be eating the dish on the regular. We love overnight oats because they're nutritious, filling, and so easy to make. There's also no end to the healthy topping combinations you can dress it up with.
  • Return of the Ancient Grains: With more people becoming health conscious, cooks started getting creative by looking beyond whole wheat, brown rice, and oats. Ancient grains like amaranth and spelt started turning up in cereals, crackers, and chips, and we saw quinoa on more than a few restaurant menus. Home cooks and bakers got in on the action by stocking their shelves with farro, buckwheat, and millet.
  • Everyone Goes Gluten-Free and Vegetarian: OK, well not everyone, but these two specialized diets became way more mainstream. Eating gluten-free was hot this year among individuals not managing celiac: we saw a surge of gluten-free products on mainstream grocery store shelves, and proponents of the diet stated that being gluten-free helped the body maintain energy and cleanse itself better. As more people became aware of the benefits of eating less meat, going vegetarian was no longer seen as some sort of strange hippie diet. High-end restaurants started offering vegetarian dishes that were worthy to be called a main and not a glorified side dish, and Meatless Mondays have started to be the norm in many people's diets.

Source: Flickr user Bill Ward's Brickpile

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