Daily Life

The Top 2021 Wellness Trends We’re Watching

From coffee blender bombs to pastel-hued, aesthetic home gym gear, and a focus on mental health, 2021 has lots of buzz-worthy trends in store for us.

By: Dominique Michelle Astorino

We all want to feel healthier and happier, so we’re always looking for the best way to make that happen. Through food, movement, self-care, and overall wellness, trends emerge each year, promising faster, easier paths to wellness. Which ones do we anticipate will come out in 2021 — and have a positive impact on our lives? Read on for nine 2021 wellness trends we’re looking forward to in the coming year.

#1 Home Gyms Get a Makeover: Aesthetic Home Gym Gear

So it looks like we’re going to be home for a bit longer — and at the very least, our gyms and boutiques won’t be the same for a long time. This is making room for a new sector of the market to explode and for a new trend to dominate your Instagram feeds: aesthetic workout equipment. That’s right — pastel-hued weights in interesting shapes (or hand-crafted walnut dumbbells), stunningly-hued yoga mats, chic resistance bands, beautiful blocks … even gorgeously crafted machines like water rowers

The name of the game? Make it pretty, and make it take up minimal real estate (we don’t all have a separate room for our home gym!). We anticipate we’re going to be seeing a lot more in the coming months and it may be one of the most popular 2021 wellness trends.

#2 Mental Health Becomes a Global Priority (and is No Longer Taboo!)

In recent years, we’ve seen the brave stigma-busters pioneer a movement toward making mental health topics part of the everyday conversation — they walked so we could run into 2021, not feeling shame around feelings of panic, stress, and overwhelm. 

We anticipate that in 2021 and beyond, it won’t have to be a “brave” move to talk about your personal experience with mental health, nor will it be out of the normal to make a therapy appointment — which, by the way, can be done right in the comfort of your own home thanks to telehealth becoming so mainstream in 2020. 

#3 East Meets West: Chinese Medicine Goes Mainstream

In 2020, we saw the explosion of some Eastern — specifically Chinese — practices within wellness (looking at you, lymphatic drainage). We think that’s just the tip of the ancient-wellness-iceberg, and that this year we’re going to see more. Think: gua sha, acupuncture, and Chinese herbs as everyday supplements, seamlessly blending Eastern and Western healthy living.

#4 Rest Is Best: Going Back to Basics, Doing Less, Feeling Better

Remember that scene from Forgetting Sarah Marshall when Paul Rudd’s character kept saying “Do Less!”? That’s us in 2021. While fitness and healthy living is still a top priority, we’re realizing that we don’t have to do the most to be healthy. 

Think: back to basics, focusing on good food, good movement, and stress relief. You don’t need blacklight goat yoga or 90-minute bootcamps or super-restrictive diets or CBD keto matcha protein shakes to feel good and take care of your body. Let’s make wellness simple and accessible again! 

A 15-minute workout and a walk could take your mood to the next level while you take care of your body. Eating nutritious, whole foods without adding so many powders and potions is FINE! These things can actually do wonders for your overall well being, metabolism, and immune system, without all the extra steps and stress. If you love blacklight goat yoga, go for it, but know that a simple yoga flow is going to be great, too. We can scale back, focus on the simple things: move, nourish, hydrate, sleep, and take care of your mental health.

#5 Recovery and Sleep Health: Rest Takes Center Stage

Speaking of all those things — we also see a major emphasis on recovery (this has been a building trend for the past year or so). Theraguns and massage tools at home, cryotherapy and infrared saunas, float tanks, stretching and cooldowns, and of course — SLEEP

So the 2021 trend? Recovery — with an emphasis on good, restful sleep — will be the queen bee of wellness trends. Keep your eyes peeled for more sleep trackers, sleep coaching, sleep supplements — just trust us on this one.

#6 Intuitive Eating: the Non-Diet We’ve All Been Waiting For 

A phrase that has been popping up more and more in the healthy eating scene is intuitive eating. In other words, listening to your body, eating foods that fuel you, and learning what works with your system and what doesn’t. All of this is in an effort to create a healthy relationship with food — removing stress and shame around eating — which is the antidote to harmful diet culture. 

With intuitive eating, there’s no guilt, no detoxing, and no vilifying of food groups. If a vegan diet is what works best for your body and brain, awesome. If you can’t eat gluten because it causes digestive problems, cool — a gluten-free way of life is in your best interest. But if you do just fine with bagels and chicken now and then, there is no 👏🏼 shame 👏🏼 in 👏🏼 that 👏🏼 game 👏🏼 — and think of it this way: stress about food is worse for your body than any food itself. 

So eat the cookie, then go back to your healthy meal prep. Eat a delicious salad and drink a smoothie, and for dinner, eat your pizza without a care in the world. Figure out what works — intuitively — and enjoy food (and life) that much more.

#7 Flexitarian Diets are En Vogue: Plant-Based and Laid-Back

Speaking of diets… we foresee the trend toward more plant-based eating (for environmental and animal welfare reasons), driving more people to flexitarianism (sometimes called a semi-vegetarian diet). That is, sometimes vegan or vegetarian, and sometimes eating fish and eggs. This more inclusive (and, well — flexible!) approach could be less intimidating for many people who’ve been considering a switch to an animal-free diet. 

Potentially, this allows someone to feel like they’re making a difference (for the climate, planet, animals, etc.), without completely upheaving their entire lifestyle or way of eating. This is, of course, following the general trend of finding balance, not going to extremes, and navigating toward a happy medium. Will you be adding more plant-based meals to your plate in 2021? 

Consider FitOn PRO, for all of your custom meal plan needs, including plenty of plant-based recipes. 

#8 Screening Our Screen Time: Tech Boundaries are the New Normal

Back on that self-care trend forecasting: screen-fatigue and tech burnout is real, especially after so many of us have been cooped up (and… tbh, bored). We’re seeing the effects of blue light and screen time on our eye health, mental health, sleep cycles, and more. We forecast that tech boundaries are going to be quite en vogue (yay!) allowing us to have the best of both worlds: instant connectivity and a world of education at our fingertips and a healthy, boundary-centric relationship with tech with plenty of breaks from the dredges of social media comparison. Like, a 30-minute workout using our iPad screen? So healthy and great! Three hours of scrolling through TikTok? Maybe not so much! 

Here’s how we see this 2021 wellness trend play out: tech detox days (a detox we can get behind) and tech vacations, tech pouches and storage to put screens away, and more unplugged activities. Because the best relationships have healthy boundaries. 

Whole Foods released its yearly roundup of the top ten food trends for 2021, and we love peeking at what the food industry has in store for us! 

Whole Foods has predicted that so many unique and yummy trends are sure to become staples in our kitchens this year — here are some of our favorites. 

Functional Ingredients

Whole Foods predicts that we’ll be seeing more superfoods, broths, and probiotics, as well as plenty of adaptogens, mushrooms, and vitamin C in trending food products this year. From natural ingredients to support a calmer mood to ingredients for immune support, we’re totally here for this. 

Deliciously Healthy & Totally Not Boring Breakfast Options

With so many people working from home, more attention is being brought to breakfast — if you didn’t eat breakfast pre-pandemic, you might find it easier to take 10-20 minutes each morning to make something nourishing since you no longer have to deal with long commute times. Whole Foods predicts that we’ll be seeing A LOT more “Epic Breakfast” trends, like different ways to enjoy pancakes, fancy egg bites, and meatless sausage patties. 

A New Way to Do Coffee

If coffee is a staple part of your morning routine and the only way you’ve been getting through those long WFH days this year, you’re in luck. Whole Foods thinks that we’ll be seeing plenty of new coffee trends, including specialty items like coffee yogurt, coffee keto cups, and coffee blender bombs— we’ll take one of each!

A Look Ahead As We Get Closer to The New Year 

We think we can all benefit from these 2021 wellness trends. Imagine a world where all the best healing modalities were blended, everyone got great sleep and had access to mental healthcare, and we had a super healthy boundary with our screens and technology. Our home gyms were beautiful, our meals had more greens; we enjoyed our food, recovered well, and turned to plants for healing and support. If things keep heading in the direction we’re seeing now, this dreamy world will be our reality in 2021.