Food trends ... new means of self expression ?

Food trends ... new means of self expression ?

Now that the Christmas holiday season has been over for a while, and we’ve had plenty of time to finish our tedious process of digestion, we can finally start talking about food again ! Yes, we know you’ve been eating too much, so no lies please !

Food is an essential part of our lives. Over the last 50 years, our social relationship with it has significantly evolved. How we eat on a daily basis is specific to each of us and says a lot about our personalities. For instance, what does food represent to you? A moment of daily pleasure, a physiological need? In this issue, I will review the latest food trends. Do they represent a real evolution of our relationship to food? Tell us your opinion!  

Fasting, the official come back of a millennia-old practice

Let’s start with a simple definition: Fasting consists in carrying out a complete caloric restriction during a certain period of time. In other words, the person doing the fast stops eating temporarily. Only water is allowed. It is also called water fasting.

Well established in the muslim religion, for instance, intermittent fasting has also become a popular diet in our societies, where detoxification is viewed as a new need, and fasting appears as a new way to dispense with the impurities and bacterias of our bodies. The miracles it promises are numerous: regulation of weight and satiety, reduced risk of diabetes, decreased cardiovascular risks, reduction of obesity, improvement of cognitive functions, fight against oxidative stress (cellular aging), positive effects on the level of bad cholesterol in the blood...

If you want to learn more about this “diet”, read the following scientific publications :

If you still have doubts, have a quick look at this Ted Talk, my favorite source of open mindedness !  Mark Mattson is the current Chief of the Laboratory of Neurosciences at the National Institute on Aging and tells us why fasting bolsters brain power. What good news !

 

Fruits, fruits, only fruits

New diet, new mood ! Would it be possible to eat only fruits everyday? No exception allowed! The fruit diet is a strict form of vegetarianism. Fruitarians are generally restricted to eating only fresh fruit and sometimes nuts. I found the most dedicated fans of this diet: a couple living with no shoes, no tooth brush and a real passion (“addiction” could be the right word) for fruits.

Go a step further, with this scientific publication about fruitarianism:

Veganism : more than a trend

We all have that one friend who tries to convince and inform us about veganism. If you don’t… well maybe that person is you! More than a way of life or a way to lose weight, veganism is a politically engaged decision, that raises issues such as health, animal cruelty and the environment. The wrong way to go at it would be to think that quinoa and avocado are harmless for all those things mentioned (sorry it is a cliché). Veganism is not just gastronomy: it also concerns the fashion industry, beauty and hygienic goods, and even which browser you use everyday… The question is: Can humans live in our current society and be 100% vegan? Only time will tell, but what we know for sure is that a real desire to change exists and is growing. Business figures speak for themselves. In France, for example, vegetarian and vegan market grew by 24% in 2018 (source).

ASMR + food lovers = millions of views.

Autonomous sensory meridian response. What is it ? The definition describes it as a feeling of well-being combined with a tingling sensation in the scalp and down the back of the neck, as experienced by some people in response to a specific gentle stimulus, often a particular sound.

Gastronomy and ASMR are currently trending on Youtube and Instagram (5,8 millions of hashtags). The whole fuss can be summarised in the examples linked below.

After watching these videos, two reactions are possible :

  • you can ask yourself if the people who like the video are completely dumb.

  • Or you can just watch, listen and ENJOY. (That’s me, no judgment please!)

To learn more about ASMR – in a scientific way that is –, check publications and patents:

Molecular gastronomy

At MyScienceWork, we love exploring all facets of a field. So,we had the opportunity to meet with Hervé This, Physical Chemist & Creator of Molecular Gastronomy, we were thrilled! We learned about molecular gastronomy, note-by-note cooking, and his vision on the future of gastronomy.

What do YOU think that future looks like? Check the interview here !

Herve This

To conclude this quick overview, I could remark that there seems to be common ideas behind these many trendy diet: the desire not to damage our planet with the way we live and the desire to  “detoxify”our bodies. Both a real scientific area of research and an popular obsession, the question remains: is there a way to be healthy without following a specific diet? Danone says “yes”.