Gone are the days of unidimensional wellness that focused only on physical health. 2019’s biggest women’s health trends are significant because they move the spotlight onto holistic wellness of the mind, body, and soul. If you’re looking to make some changes to your routine, here are the hottest wellness trends of the current year, with predictions from experts.
Women’s Health Trends 2019 - Foods and Vitamins
If you’ve heard of the biohacking movement that’s picked up steam in recent years, you’re probably familiar with MCT Oil, a derivative of coconut oil. This powerhouse supplement has made its way from the fringes into mainstream wellness, with celebrities and fitness trainers vouching for its efficiency. MCT stands for Medium Chain Triglyceride, which is a type of fat (triglyceride) that has a smaller (medium-chain) structure than regular, Long Chain Triglycerides. The smaller structure helps MCTs get metabolized in a way that’s similar to carbohydrates, and not like other fats. This is why adopters of the keto diet – a no-carb, high fat diet – love it. Among MCT Oil’s supposed benefits are increased focus, greater fat burning, and increased energy. Get your fill of MCT Oil by mixing some into your morning coffee. Alternatively, find a CBD product like Hempure CBD Drops or Capsules that use MCT Oil as a carrier for a 2-in-1 wellness boost.
With the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill that legalized hemp and its derivatives including Cannabidiol (CBD), trend forecasters expect this already popular product to explode. Says nutritionist Adnan Munye, founder of AMMFitness, CBD oil is popular among fitness fanatics for “combating inflammation and promoting rest, recovery and sleep”. Used for bringing balance to the endocannabinoid system, CBD holds particular interest for women. Women-led CBD businesses are flourishing, and it seems that more women are turning to CBD as an alternative treatment as well. This could be because of a large number of issues that CBD could provide relief for disproportionately affect women, for instance, insomnia, depression, and stress. It could also be because traditional medicine has not always recognized women’s physical pains as fully legitimate, especially when brought on by conditions like endometriosis, PCOS, menopause, and menstruation. It’s no wonder then that this miracle compound is only going to continue growing in popularity among women.
More health experts are switching focus to the proper functioning of the endocrine system and how that could affect mental and physical wellbeing. A better hormonal balance could theoretically make one more resilient to stress. Adaptogens are cropping up as a tool for this purpose. Says Liz Smithers, the owner of Hawaii-based Laka Living, “adaptogens are plants that help the internal environment synergize with the external environment. They can help an over or under-active system reach its own version of balance.” Adaptogens that are popular among women include ashwagandha, goji berry, turmeric and American ginseng, which can support the body’s response to insomnia, stress, fatigue and can even strengthen the immune system. Smithers adds, “the modern world is forcing us to up-level and somewhat redefine our baseline - a healthy, balanced diet isn’t enough anymore if we want to continue to perform and excel to our best ability. These plants hold a gentle potency that is our key to maintaining traction in an always-on world.”
One of the biggest learnings of recent years is that what’s in the stomach can actually affect what goes on in the mind. The overuse of antibiotics has led to a collective reduction in the average person’s gut flora, which is obviously an important part of any immune system. But the fact that it can also affect mental health is why researchers are calling the gut the ‘second brain’. Says Lisa Richards, creator of The Candida Diet, “We now know that more than 70% of our immune cells are located in the gut. The gut plays an important role in producing vitamins and even neurotransmitters like serotonin. A healthy gut has been linked to improved energy levels, better mood, stronger immunity, better digestion, and more.” She is optimistic about future research creating tailored treatments for gut-related conditions. The future of probiotics is looking bright!
Women’s Health Trends 2019 – Products
Hemp seeds and oils can be found in food and beauty aisles already, and have been there for a while, but with the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, one can expect these to blow up even more. Whole Foods also predicted that it would be a top 10 product for 2019, in all its iterations: from hemp waffle mix to hemp pasta. Hemp clothing could also be expected to rise in popularity, with retailers starting to show interest in this low-cost, environmentally friendly material.
Less free time for women means less time to spare for the gym. Which is why 2019 is about bringing the workout to you. Lydia Noyes, a health & wellness journalist at HighYa notes, “Exercise enthusiasts everywhere are trading pricy gym memberships for the convenience of a home workout, and an ever-broadening market for similar tech-enabled fitness equipment shows this trend has no sign of stopping.” She also predicts a shift away from free weights and onto resistance bands, owing to their versatility and convenience when it comes to storage and travel.
Au Naturale Beauty
A wellness trend that’s been a long time coming: experts predict that women will drop pricey chemical skincare cocktails for a more organic approach. “The alarm bells about the dangers of aluminum in antiperspirants are starting to go off, so more people are switching to natural deodorants instead that aren't designed to clog your pores with potentially troubling ingredients. Natural alternatives (to soap) like goat's milk soap are trending on Google, showing that we're starting to look for more ways to ditch the toxic ingredients when treating our skin,” says Noyes.
The shade inclusivity and body positivity movement are both growing rapidly, which is a welcome revolution for shoppers. Many credit Fenty Beauty with having started the practice, forcing other brands to quickly follow suit. Make-up brands are adding new shades to their lines every other day, while fashion brands are incorporating more shades of ‘nude’ underwear and making sizing more dynamic.
Women’s Health Trends 2019 – Lifestyle
The Anti-Diet Movement
The body positivity movement is bringing about several welcome changes to lifestyle and fitness as well. Says dietician Rachel Fine, “The anti-diet movement is an emerging trend with movements like Healthy At Every Size (HAES) and Intuitive Eating.” She adds, “giving yourself permission to honor your cravings is the first step to a healthier relationship with food,” which a lot of women previously subscribing to fad diets believe they had lost.
Stress, mood disorders, and hormonal disorders disproportionately affect women, which explains why there’s a desperate need for more solutions to combat them. One that’s emerging as very successful in recent years is mindfulness, a trend that is expected to grow much larger in 2019. “Being mindful of how your body feels, stress levels, foods in your diet, and exercise are hugely important and always have been, but women are changing the scene this year. No longer expect women to take vague answers to women’s health issues sitting down. Women are taking control of their health more actively than ever before, and these women are sharing experiences with the world… by being mindful of other women out there who may be experiencing the same health events,” says a representative at DietSpotlight.
2019’s wellness trends are all about dismantling what women thought they knew: about beauty, fitness, and health. One thing is certain: women will continue to become stronger, wiser, and healthier consumers by looking inward and focusing more on what makes them happy. That’s a trend we can all get on board with!