7 Healthy Food Trends to Watch For in 2020

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Last year, cauliflower, beets and CBD-infused everything topped the food trend charts. You’ll still see them around this year, but a new crop of up-and-coming health foods are ripe and ready for eating! Beyond nutrition, many of 2020’s biggest food trends offer benefits for beauty, mood, gut health and even immunity. So load up your plate and get ready for more whole-body wellness meals to kick off this new year.

Wooden Sectioned Bowl with Colorful Ancient Grains on Green Bamboo Mat to Represent 2020 Predictions for Healthy Food Trends | Vitacost.com/blog

1. Crazy for chickpeas

Chickpeas are the new cauliflower. No longer just a hummus ingredient, these little legumes are landing in all sorts of dishes, from decadent desserts to protein bars, snacks, waffles, pancakes, omelets, pasta and even hot and cold cereals. Boil up some Explore Cuisine’s Chickpea Pasta for a protein-rich noodle dish, or give The Good Bean’s Chickpea snacks a try next time you’re craving chips!

2. Amazing ancient grains

Ancient grains have been growing in popularity ever since quinoa appeared on the market (over 10 years ago!) – and they’re showing no signs of slowing down. This year you’ll see new and upcoming grains such as black rice, fonio, kaniwa, sorghum, freekeh and sorghum become more mainstream. You’ll also see classic foods upgraded with ancient grains, such as quinoa chips, crackers, pasta and breakfast bars. Give the trend a try with these bars from Enjoy Life.

3. More mushrooms, please!

Familiar mushrooms, such as reishi and shitake, continue to grow in popularity, but others like lion’s mane, maitake, cordyceps and turkey tail mushrooms have made their way into the spotlight for their benefits for energy, immune system support, beauty and skin, stress reduction, and brain function. Om is a brand that makes a unique line of mushroom products featuring blends with all of hese mushrooms and more. Turn to their Immunity blend when you’re feeling under the weather, or try the Beauty blend next time your skin needs a little extra attention.

4. OAT-rageous creations

It’s no secret that oats are a powerhouse superfood that cost just cents on the dollar. These whole grains offer multitudes of benefits, and in 2020, you’ll see new oat creations by many mainstream brands. Look for non-dairy oat yogurt, oat-based non-dairy milk, on-the-go oatmeal breakfast bars, oat breakfast cookies and even oat-milk ice cream. You can also make your own oat recipes (like this DIY oat milk) using Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free oats or Quaker brands.

5. Say hello to seeds

Pumpkin, sunflower, chia, hemp and flax seeds are known as powerful superfoods and sources of protein compared to more traditional plant-based options, such as tofu, nuts and beans. You’ll find seeds studded in everything from protein bites and bars to protein powders, hot cereals, grain-free granola bars, cold cereals, desserts and more. Keep a bag of Manitoba Harvest’s organic hemp seeds and Bob’s Red Mill pumpkin and sunflower seeds in your fridge or pantry to use them often, or try out a ground seed powder, like Nutiva Organic Protein Superfood Smoothie Mix.

6. Fall in love with legumes

Legumes (beans, peas and lentils) are set to get lots of love in 2020. Legumes are high in not only protein, but also other essential nutrients such as fiber, potassium, iron, magnesium, B vitamins, and even calcium. Black beans, mung beans, lentils and the aforementioned chickpeas (garbanzo beans) deserve some special attention for their antioxidants, increased digestibility and easy-to-cook quality. Try a plant-based protein powder made from sprouted grains, legumes and other superfoods in your morning smoothie. Garden of Life’s Raw Organic Meal and Raw Organic Protein are great if you’re looking for easy-to-digest and organic options.

7. Collagen goes plant based

Collagen is ultra-trendy, and plant-based sources are on the rise for anyone who prefers non animal-sourced options. Since vitamin C is the most important nutrient to focus on if you’re looking to support your body’s natural ability to make collagen, be sure to include plenty of vitamin C-rich fruits and vegetables, such as strawberries, kale, pineapple, sweet potatoes, guava and broccoli, in your diet. Or, try some BareOrganics’ goji berries and amla powder or Sunfood’s camu camu berry powder.