Keeping an open mind on ‘fad’ diets

The high-fat, low-carbohydrate keto diet is enjoying spectacular popularity at the moment, but will it remain relevant in the years to come? Mintel’s Global Food Analyst Melanie Zanoza Bartelme believes it would be wise to keep an open mind.

“Walking around the floor at Natural Products Expo West in California this year, it was evident that keto was continuing its moment in the spotlight,” she said.

From sauces to spreads to ice cream, there was a keto-friendly product in nearly every category. Some of these products simply called out their keto-appropriate ingredients, like MCT oil, while others had seemingly built their entire identity around the diet.

“While it feels like an opportunity to address the interest consumers have in the keto diet, it may not be so wise to build a brand solely around this – or any other – potentially fad diet,” she said. “Keto is hot right now, but what will happen to these brands when the next on-trend diet surges into retail aisles? For instance, some food media outlets have pointed to the Mediterranean Diet, low-FODMAP, and even the Carnivore Diet as ones to watch.”

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