The food world moves fast. In just one year we can go from not knowing a food exists, to seeing it in headlines almost every single day, to deciding that it’s no longer a big deal. In 2019, we saw a few food trends that failed to take off and some that took the world by storm. Some of these were good, and some of them, not so much.
Here are eight food trends that we’ll be happy to leave in 2019.
1. “Healthy” Bottled Salad Dressings
In the last few years, we’ve seen a huge surge in “healthy” bottled salad dressings. And while this is a noble effort nutrition-wise, it’s impossible to get around the fact that salad dressings are always better homemade. In 2020, we’ll be happy to wave goodbye to bottled salad dressings and hello to fresh and easy salad dressings we can make at home.
2. Sugar Substitutes
We’ve long known that added sugar and artificial sweeteners are bad for our health. But what about natural sugar substitutes like stevia and monk fruit? They may be healthier options than aspartame or high fructose corn syrup, but natural sugars like those found in fruit are still the best option. Plus, many health experts say we don’t know enough about how ultra-sweet substances like stevia may affect our health.
3. Celery Juice
There’s no denying the fact that celery juice is a massive wellness trend. But you might be interested to know that this trend was started by someone with zero qualifications in nutrition, health, medicine, or even food sciences or culinary arts. So while it won’t hurt you to drink it, it’s definitely not worth all the hype.
4. CBD-Infused Desserts
CBD is an exciting compound with many potential health benefits. That said, I think we can all agree that the CBD food and drink craze has gone a little too far. And when we’re seeing CBD-infused ice cream and candy bars, we have to stop and wonder if there are better, healthier ways to take CBD.
5. Gummy Vitamins
We know, we know. Gummy vitamins are delicious! But many of them contain added sugar, artificial colors and flavors, and even food dyes that are better off avoided. In 2020, if we do opt for a gummy vitamin, we’ll be checking the ingredients list with a critical eye to make sure we’re not harming our health more than we’re boosting it.
Related Reading: 5 Things You Should Know About Sugar
6. Snacks to Help You Sleep
Getting high-quality sleep should be one of our top priorities, but eating snacks before bed is never a good idea—even if those snacks contain ingredients that supposedly support sleep. Research has shown that eating before bed can disrupt our circadian rhythms and confuse our bodies, which can actually lead to lower quality sleep. If that’s not enough to convince you to lay off the late-night snacks, eating before bed has also been linked to acid reflux, weight gain, and memory issues.
Related Reading: Top 10 Friday Food Finds of 2019
7. Plant-Based Butters
Being plant-based doesn’t automatically make a food healthy. Case in point: Plant-based butter substitutes, which often contain soybean, canola, palm kernel, and palm fruit oils. And while they do often have less saturated fat than normal butter, the ingredients list on these products in long and includes plenty of things we can’t pronounce. At the end of the day, we’d all be better off keeping it simple and sticking to whole foods like olive oil, avocado oil, or grass-fed butter or ghee.
8. Unicorn and Mermaid Foods
Hopefully, the end of 2019 will also mark the end of the “unicorn” food trend. These colorful foods are more about aesthetics than nutrition or taste. For example, the Unicorn Latte from Starbucks (which some would argue started it all…back in 2017) contains over 400 calories and over 50 grams of sugar. There are far better ways to eat the rainbow.
Header image courtesy of Johner Images / Getty Images