Health and wellness trends can look very different from one year to the next. The wellness sector saw a boom through 2023, with increasing numbers of people prioritizing their health following the pandemic. From facial yoga to cold water therapy, numerous unique self-care trends have emerged in recent months, causing a stir on social media.
We look at five of the biggest health and wellness trends of 2023.
1. Biotech Health and Wellness Tools
Access to at-home blood tests and other tools has increased considerably in recent years, enabling consumers to access diagnostic services that were previously only available in the doctor’s office. Innovative apps and digital platforms are providing a raft of innovative new health and wellness tools developed for at-home use.
Biotech techniques and tools can be used to diagnose many medical conditions and diseases faster and more accurately. One example that has been used prolifically for some time now is the home pregnancy test.
Advances in biotech have paved the way for the creation of a wave of new genetic tests, with 1,000 such tests available today, according to genetests.org. Biotech breakthroughs have also lowered the cost of diagnostics in many cases, including blood tests that detect “bad” cholesterol without fasting, and tests to diagnose certain types of cancer, including prostate and ovarian cancer.
2. Sleep Syncing
Sleep duration and quality can have a huge impact on a person’s overall well-being, impacting their performance at work, personal relationships, and general daily activities.
Sleep syncing is a practice that enables participants to tune in to their body’s natural circadian rhythm, requiring them to think about and adapt their daily routine so that it better aligns with what their body naturally wants to do.
Essentially, sleep syncing is about creating a routine to ensure that the body is sleeping and waking at the optimal time, giving the internal clock a gentle nudge to improve sleep quality, boost energy levels, and help to maintain overall health.
3. Women’s Wellness
In recent years, progress has finally been made in terms of chipping away at the stigma that surrounds women’s health and wellness, paving the way for a spotlight to finally be shone on topics such as menopause and fertility, as well as women’s health issues such as polycystic ovary syndrome and endometriosis.
According to a report by the UK Center for Aging Better, women in the United Kingdom spend more than a quarter of their lives with a disabling illness, on average, with a disparity of 16 healthy years between women living in different geographic regions and economic conditions across the country. In response to this staggering finding, the Institute of Government & Public Policy launched an initiative in May 2023 designed to improve the health and well-being of women across the country.
The Institute of Government & Public Policy partnered with academics, key organizations, and other government bodies to provide a vital opportunity to discuss issues impacting women’s health in the UK, examining current and future policy and inequalities within, and evaluating the future of women’s health and well-being.
Adaptogens are active ingredients contained in plants and fungi that affect the way that the body deals with stress, fatigue, and anxiety. For example, research suggests that dark chocolate can help to elevate mood, while turmeric has the potential to reduce inflammation.
Another example is Indian ginseng, otherwise known as Indian winter cherry, which is renowned for its soothing effects, helping the brain to deal with stress. Meanwhile, mushroom coffee, a blend of ground coffee beans and mushroom extract, has also become popular, helping to reduce stress and inflammation, and conferring other potential health benefits.
In parts of Asia, people have been using adaptogens to treat ailments for centuries, and according to a report published by UCLA Health, medical experts in the United States are also beginning to recognize the value of these supplements.
Adaptogens are derived from fungi, roots, and herbs. Research indicates that adaptogens may be beneficial in the treatment of a variety of conditions when used in conjunction with standard treatments, with studies suggesting that they may have a positive impact on post-surgery recovery, congestive heart failure, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
5. Personalized Nutrition
Personalized nutrition takes into account a variety of different factors particular to the individual patient, including gut health factors and genetics. As our understanding of the human microbiome and its impact on overall health grows, personalized nutrition plans are becoming increasingly popular.
The National Institutes of Health describes the microbiome as a community of microorganisms that “live in or on a particular part of the body,” for example, the gastrointestinal tract, or the skin.
Nutrigenomics is the study of how genes interact with nutrition. The field has become more prevalent in recent years, with an increasing number of companies offering personalized nutrition plans based on an individual’s DNA, and factoring in aspects such as eating habits, gut bacteria, and lifestyle to help clients make smarter food choices.