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Each new year brings a new set of trends, especially in the world of nutrition and dieting. And, 2020 is no different. Adapting a plant-based diet is on the forefront of American’s minds, with everything from the Impossible Burger to Tuno, a plant-based seafood alternative consisting of soy protein and seaweed.

Additionally, consumers are clamoring for more fiber, more vegetables and more better-for-you fats within their food choices. An end-of-year poll taken at the end of 2019 of 1,259 registered dietitians conducted by Pollock Communications and Today’s Dietitian, showed that consumers will be “significantly reducing carbohydrates, grains and sugar in favor of vegetables, fat and meat in the coming year.” The study’s dietitians cited the top 10 superfoods for 2020 to help consumers in their quest, and nuts made the list.

One of the reasons walnuts make such a great addition to both plant-based and carnivorous diets is that they satisfy the “good fat” category. California walnuts are a good-fat food that supply 2.5g per ounce of plant-based omega-3 ALA. Research shows that consumers are learning that there is such a thing as “good” dietary fat, when in the past the word “fat” held more of a negative connotation.

A U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans report showed that 72% of Americans identify omega-3s as being good for them to consume as part of a healthy diet. Additionally, 81% recognize some fats may be good for them. Let’s take a look at the top 5 dietary trends for 2020 and corresponding products that embrace good dietary fat found in walnuts.

Mediterranean Diet

Trend No. 1: Mediterranean Diet

Although it’s not a new diet craze, the Mediterranean Diet continues to make headlines as one of the most trusted diets from health professionals. According to The Mayo Clinic, the Mediterranean diet, beginning in the 1960s, is a heart-healthy eating plan, “with the observation that coronary heart disease caused fewer deaths in Mediterranean countries, such as Greece and Italy, than in the U.S. and northern Europe.” Today, the Mediterranean diet is an eating plan that is recommended by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Since walnuts are certified by the American Heart Association’s Heart-Check mark, they are a great staple for the Mediterranean diet. For an all-natural, non-GMO, gluten-free, certified kosher bar, try Mediterra’s Yogurt & Oat Bar with Lemon and Walnuts. These bars were inspired by the Mediterranean diet, and are filled with fiber, nutrients and vitamins.

Trend No. 2: Paleo

Nuts top the list of ingredients in the Paleo diet, including nut butters. The Mayo Clinic defines Paleo as a diet plan based on foods “similar to what might have been eaten during the Paleolithic era.” Typically, foods in Paleo’s arsenal include lean meats, fish, fruits, vegetables, seeds and nuts — all foods that can be obtained by hunting and gathering. If you’re on the hunt for a Paleo-friendly, made-with-walnuts bar, Caveman offers Chocolate Walnut Collagen Bars that are certified gluten-free and are a good source of fiber. They contain no grains, dairy or soy.

Trend No. 3: Keto

Walnuts also are an essential ingredient in the ketogenic (keto) diet, a low-carb, high-fat diet similar to Atkins. Healthline says that keto involves “drastically reducing carbohydrate intake and replacing it with fat. This reduction in carbs puts your body into a metabolic state called ketosis.” In short, the body more efficiently burns fat for energy and turns fat into ketones in the liver, resulting in higher energy for the brain. Begin the day with Fearless Keto’s Pancake & Muffin Mix, released last year. Starting with the rich flavor of walnuts, the mix offers a combination of fullness factor with superfood qualities

Wellnut Walnut Butter

Trend No. 4: Clean Eating

Clean labels and clean eating lend themselves to the omission of processed foods, artificial flavors and colors and words we simply aren’t familiar with or can’t pronounce. Eating “clean” usually means we can trace the ingredients back to the source, relying on whole foods that are as close to their natural form as possible. Healthline notes that choosing nutrient-dense and whole foods are staples of clean eating. Walnuts and all-natural nut butters fit that bill. For a tasty nut butter that is non-GMO, gluten-free and free of artificial flavors, we recommend Wellnut Farms’ Salted Caramel Walnut Butter, which contains all-natural ingredients.

Trend No. 5: Intermittent Fasting

Quite the rage heading into 2020, intermittent fasting cycles through periods of fasting and eating. Diet Doctor says that fasting is a controlled action, and adopters can choose which periods to fast. It could be between breakfast and dinner, skipping lunch, or for longer 12-14 hour periods or even longer. Goals are weight loss and reversal of type 2 diabetes, along with fat burning, possible reduced inflammation and possible improved mental clarity and concentration. Of course hunger is a major side effect, so it’s important to not undo the benefits with that first meal after a fast. Mariani’s Walnutmilk is naturally creamier, so consumers can pour on cereal, blend it in a smoothie or drink it in a tall, cold glass. Using California-grown walnuts, Walnutmilk is available in original, vanilla and unsweetened flavors.

* Supportive but not conclusive research shows that eating 1.5 ounces of walnuts per day, as part of a low saturated fat and low cholesterol diet and not resulting in increased caloric intake, may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. (FDA) One ounce of walnuts offers 18g of total fat, 2.5g of monounsaturated fat, 13g of polyunsaturated fat including 2.5g of alpha-linolenic acid – the plant-based omega-3.
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