According to Millennials – people born between the early 1980s and 2000s – the deprivation and ravenous hunger associated with dieting for weight and fat loss are no longer in vogue.
Instead, women around the world, led seemingly by Gen-Yers, are shunning the old diet paradigm of low-calorie, low-fat diets.
A new trend has emerged where calorie-counting has become so last season, according to reports from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and the International Food Information Council (IFIC).
Health first approach
According to the data, it seems that Millennials have rebuffed the conventional wisdom of their Baby Boomer parents, for whom the quintessential diet was restrictive, devoid of fat and full of processed convenience food and added sugar.
Instead, they are choosing a more healthful and balanced approach to eating.
According to the PwC report, the shift in trend toward “healthy eating” among Millennial consumers is thanks to increased media exposure across social media, including bloggers, and the use of mobile apps.
This has resulted in almost half of respondents (47%) in the PwC report stating that they have shifted their eating habits towards a healthier diet, as compared to just 23% of those aged over 55. Additional data showed that 53% of those surveyed expected to change their eating habits in the next year, compared to just 19% of those aged over 55.
The IFIC’s 2015 Food and Health Survey also found that Millennials are less likely to count or limit calories than other age groups.
READ MORE | End Dieting For Good By Understanding Macros
Defining healthful eating
But what exactly do Millennials consider to be “healthy”? The IFIC report states that millennials tend to agree that moderating sugar intake may be part of a healthy diet, and that there are differences in the healthfulness of naturally-occurring sugars compared with other types of sweeteners.
They’re also less inclined to reduce their consumption of solid fats, and one in three Millennials recently changed their opinion on the healthfulness of saturated fat, according to the report, and are now eating more of it.
And to add further credence to the millennial-driven shift in dietary trends, a report released by Morgan Stanley states that while previous generations counted calories, Millennials care more about food being “fresh, less processed and with fewer artificial ingredients”.
Author: Pedro van Gaalen
When he’s not writing about sport or health and fitness, Pedro is probably out training for his next marathon or ultra-marathon. He’s worked as a fitness professional and as a marketing and comms expert. He now combines his passions in his role as managing editor at Fitness magazine.