Nutrition Experts Forecast 2020 will Usher in the Ultimate Food Revolution

Eighth Annual Survey of Nation’s Top RDNs Predicts Elimination Diets & Healthy Eating Are Here to Stay

Move over highly processed foods and empty calorie carbs and make room for plant-based protein and nutrition-packed grains. These are just some of the food items that registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) predict consumers will be seeking out as we enter the next decade of the 21st century. We’ll likely be seeing more of a healthy revolution in 2020 and beyond, according to the annual Pollock Communications and Today’s Dietitian “What’s Trending in Nutrition” survey. With 1,259 RDNs responding, the “What’s Trending in Nutrition” survey reveals the hottest food and nutrition trends to look for in 2020 – including the increasingly-popular “keto” diet, fermented foods, non-dairy milks, and plant proteins – to name a few. This year green tea pushes out coconut products from the top 10 superfoods list, while a “healthy” label holds strong as a leading consumer purchase driver, surpassing cost and taste, yet again. All the data share a similar theme: a clean-label and healthy are in – highly-processed and complex ingredients are out.

Top 10 Superfoods for 2020

Powerhouse foods that provide desirable benefits from boosting gut health to blunting inflammation bookend this year’s top 10 list, with fermented foods – like yogurt, kefir, kombucha, sauerkraut, tempeh, kimchi and miso – at the #1 spot and flavonoid-rich green tea at #10. It’s no surprise, as consumers make gut health and reducing inflammation a priority in their quest for health and wellness. Non-dairy milks move up on the list to the #8 spot, underscoring the growing popularity of plant-based swaps. Here’s the full list of superfood predictions for 2020:

  1. Fermented foods, like yogurt & kefir
  2. Avocado
  3. Seeds
  4. Exotic fruit, like acai, golden berries
  5. Ancient grains
  6. Blueberries
  7. Nuts
  8. Non-dairy milks
  9. Beets
  10. Green Tea

Top 10 Consumer Purchase Drivers

The survey results reveal consistency in the millennial-driven search for foods that fit their health and wellness lifestyles. When asked what motivates consumer food purchase decision, the findings show what food manufacturers should focus on to win these customers. Convenience, cost and taste have always been key, but for two years in a row now, “healthy” is second only to convenience, and tops cost and taste. Here’s a look at the list of top 10 purchase drivers for 2020:

  1. Convenience
  2. Healthy
  3. Cost
  4. Taste
  5. Natural
  6. Clean-Label
  7. Organic
  8. Gluten Free
  9. Non-GMO
  10. Dairy free

“The 2020 survey results send a clear and consistent message. Consumers want to live healthier lives,” says Louise Pollock, President of Pollock Communications. “They have access to an incredible amount of health information, and they view food as a way to meet their health and wellness goals. Consumers are taking control of their health in ways they never did before, forcing the food industry to evolve and food companies to innovate in response to consumer demand.”

Keto is King – Deprivation Over Decadence

With the ketogenic (keto) diet reigning at the #1 spot again in 2020, this diet trend looks like it’s here to stay, followed by intermittent fasting and clean eating. While these diet trends may not be endorsed by all RDNs, it’s clear that consumers have no issue with elimination diets – scrapping foods they believe won’t help them meet their health, wellness and weight loss goals. Moderation is making way for deprivation and consumers have never felt better about it. They realize that what they eat affects how they feel. RDNs agree that consumers will be significantly reducing carbohydrates, grains and sugar in favor of vegetables, fat and meat in the coming year.

Top 5 Nutrition Recommendations from RDNs

According to the survey, celebrities, friends/family, blogs and social media are still the top sources of nutrition misinformation for consumers. Instead, consumers should follow the experts’ advice! RDNs give these five health and wellness eating tips for 2020:

  1. Eat more servings of vegetables per day
  2. Increase fiber intake
  3. Limit highly processed foods or fast foods
  4. Limit foods with “added sugars”
  5. Choose non-caloric drinks, like unsweetened tea and coffee

“Registered Dietitian Nutritionists are the most trusted diet experts in the nation, as they should be. They understand the science of food and how it influences whole-body health.” says Mara Honicker, publisher of Today’s Dietitian. “It’s no wonder that consumers look to them for guidance in making the right food choices, and we look to them for insights that will help shape food policy and the industry overall.”

Pollock Communications is a New York City-based, independent, full-service food, health, and wellness public relations agency launched in 1991. Pollock’s public relations and credentialed nutrition experts create innovative partnerships that link brands to health and wellness platforms. Pollock has a long history of reaching key influencers and successfully communicating the taste, health and lifestyle benefits of brands and commodity foods to consumers, retailers and healthcare professionals. For more information please visit

Today’s Dietitian is in its 20th year covering the field of nutrition and dietetics and is established as the leading independent trade publication for registered dietitian nutritionists, certified diabetes educators and dietary managers and other certified nutrition professionals. Each month, Today’s Dietitian provides this influential community of professionals with best practices and recommendations for their clients through content that covers essential topics such as diabetes management, heart health, food allergies and weight control, as well as the latest in industry research, nutritional supplements and special dietary options that include gluten-free living, plant-based diets, organic foods and much more.

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