A Hipster’s Guide To Superfoods in 2016

The apothecary jars are freshly drained of green juice and ready to house the next range of superfoods for 2016. Here we take a look at nine high performers bound to make an appearance in the vernacular of someone near you, and soon.

Are we done with kale yet? No. It’s so deeply, lusciously green and so disgustingly, self-righteously awful tasting in smoothies that it is bound to remain high on the juice, salad and cleanse menus of all inner-city cafés and food trucks. Will strange and exotic options be lauded then quickly forgotten? Most definitely. See our list below so you can talk health with the hipsters this year.

#1 Blood is the new black

The Guardian – British, of course – predicts black pudding (a sausage made from pig’s blood, meat, fat, oatmeal, and bread or potato fillers) will be the 2016 superfood of choice. Following the Paleo trend that won’t quit thanks to zealous chefs and CrossFit devotees, this massive hit of protein – topped with a fried egg if you just came from the gym – is iron-rich, wholly satiating, wickedly unusual and therefore bound to be a winner on Instagram. The deli in Northcote Plaza Coles reports they sell out of black pudding within hours of it appearing. The demand is growing weekly.

#2 Pickled, fermented anything

Kombucha, despite being affectionately called the ‘champagne of life’, seems to have had its moment as the fermented product du jour. We’re now focussing our energies on pickling everything. This trend began gaining momentum in the latter half of 2015, when people figured out it’s pretty cheap and easy to do it yourself. The Japanese, Germans and Koreans have been way ahead of the game for a long time with the likes of pickled ginger, sauerkraut and kimchee staples, but it’s about time the rest of us joined the party: the process of fermentation and pickling turn average veggies into probiotic-rich wonder foods ready to lay down some serious microbe action in your gut. Definitely add to cart.

#3 Incan fruit

If you’re more inclined to listen to ancient traditions than fit, buffed, LA babes, you’ll be inclined to go for the fruit favoured by ancient Incan warriors. The lucuma fruit looks a little like an avocado, but the inside is butter yellow and tastes quite sweet. It is popular in powder form for use in thickening and sweetening in baking or boosting smoothies. Rich in Vitamin B3, iron, zinc and beta carotene, the fruit fresh or in powder form performs beauty miracles from the inside out. Stock up before too many people find out and it’s no longer cool.

#4 Super water

Your water is now officially #plantbased. Cactus water is making waves in LA and we all know, as soon as you see a celebrity walking out of SoulCycle with a bottle of something weird and wonderful, it is officially a Must Have for health nuts. Extracted from the prickly pear, this exotic concoction hails from Central and South America and has a distinctly fruity taste. It packs a wallop of calcium, magnesium and antioxidants and you can act way more pretentious than those hauling plain water.

#5 Ancient g(r)ains

You can add black rice to your list of must-have superfood ingredients. Not only is it higher in antioxidants than its superfood sister, the blueberry, it is also low in sugar and carbohydrates. You get extra fitness and health hipster points for turning up your nose at traditional white and brown rice and stating, “I really prefer ancient grains… do you do black rice?” Chef and cookbook author, Yottam Ottolenghi combines black rice with mango, coconut milk and banana at his renowned restaurant in London – it’s a cult thing. So, you should try it.

#6 Your ass is sea grass

Kelp is a must. Just like pickled ginger, it is a staple of the Japanese diet. Get it in sheets, shredded and even powdered. Wrap your veggies up in it, make sushi (with black rice – of course), and add it to your smoothies or your juice. It’s high in iodine, which is vital for healthy thyroid function and hormonal balance. It’s also virtually calorie-free. Bonus.

#7 Aloha tuna

This is not a superfood so much as a superdish, so make sure at some point this year you casually mention how much you love poke bowls (pronounced ‘pok-eh’). Y’know, ever since you discovered them while doing yoga on a paddleboard in Hawaii. In fact, add a hashtag and you’ve really nailed this whole health hipster thing. This superfood is also super delicious: cubes of raw tuna soaked in sesame seed oil and soy served atop that other wonderful superfood, seaweed. Not only does every trendy raw food diner in Hawaii love this, but it combines numerous superfoods and is beloved by paleo, raw food, pescatarian Crossfit yoga instructors.

#8 You’re so teff

Mark our words, it’s the year someone sheepishly asks you what the hell teff is. In Ethiopia, this grain is used in making flatbread – but now we’ve jumped on the bandwagon because it is gluten-free, high in iron and calcium, has protein to rival that of eggs, and it has the type of fibre (resistant starch) which keeps you fuller for longer and controls blood sugar levels like a champ. Plus, you can make muffins with it. Winning.

#9 Say good morning to Moringa

Green powders are always going to be a superfood lover’s staple. They bulk up your juice and smoothie, they announce how healthy and fit you are from miles away, and they cost more than your fortnightly coffee allowance for a pouch as big as your foot. But it’s not just any green powder for 2016: this year, it’s moringa. Native to Asia and Africa, Ayurveda has used Moringa Oleifera for hundreds of years to treat hundreds of health conditions. Its uses are many, but it’s commonly taken as a natural energy booster and detoxifier and overall health enhancer.

This potent antioxidant comes in capsules, powders, tablets and in tea form. It’s a drought-resistant plant that can also be used to purify water so not only are you doing your bit for your body, but you’re also championing sustainability and environmental responsibility. Don’t just consume this – Instagram it, Pinterest it, Facebook and Tweet it and then for good measure, Snapchat it and record a podcast all about how amazing it is.

Cat Woods is a writer, editor and blogger in Melbourne. She is also a yoga, barre and pilates instructor for with a passion for fitness, lipstick, 90s electroclash and yoga pants.