What will be the hot new wellness and fitness trends in 2018? That’s not an easy question to answer, but there is already evidence that at least three candidates are vying for the honor of being next year’s “big deal.”
Fitness websites, nutrition experts and major booksellers are seeing huge interest in boxing workouts for better health, activated charcoal as a nutritional supplement, and so-called “simple eating” as a new lifestyle for the “minimalist” crowd.
Strangely, all three “new” trends are more than a hundred years old. The point is, though, that none of the three has ever been considered a mainstream activity or product. Boxing is an apt example: It has been a popular spectator sport since the 1800s but has never caught on as a workout regimen for non-professional athletes, until now.
Boxing is Big Business
Private clubs, gyms, public health facilities and even corporate fitness programs are incorporating boxing workouts into their standard aerobics and resistance routines. The “manly art” has finally gone mainstream, and for good reason. Boxing workouts are an ideal way to stay in all-around top shape, are uncomplicated, and can be done alone or in groups.
The typical training routine for boxing is often called the best comprehensive fitness workout. That is clearly a matter of opinion, but there is much evidence to back up the claim. For one thing, boxing helps strengthen ligaments, joints, bones, and muscles. It’s an incredibly efficient cardio workout, burns fat at a fast rate, has been proven to reduce stress, and can be a potent form of self-defense for young and old, male and female.
One of the big attractions of boxing is the social aspect, as even beginner classes feature close-knit groups of training partners, tandem workouts, simple sparring, and lots of fun interaction.
A typical 30-minute boxing workout incorporates calisthenics, resistance training, aerobics, and full-body conditioning. Group classes seem to be everywhere people gather to work out. Some stand-alone boxing gyms are even sprouting up in suburban malls and quiet residential neighborhoods as millions of people flock to one of the hottest fitness booms of the decade.
One of the oldest known health remedies, activated charcoal (aka activated carbon), is NOT what is in your backyard grill. It is a completely different substance that has been used for centuries (as least since about 100 BCE) as a water cleanser and remedy for stomach ailments.
Nowadays, nutritionists tout its ability to do many things, some of which are part of its ancient heritage, and some of which are newly discovered. A staple in many emergency rooms, AC can be used to detox the body after a person ingests various types of poison, helps relieve gas and bloating, whitens the teeth (but be careful if you have fillings or crowns because it can stain them).
There is evidence that AC can help reduce cholesterol and it is regularly used in alcohol detox centers for acute alcohol poisoning. However, the substance’s use as a hangover cure is often misunderstood.
Because hangovers are mostly caused by the chemical additives in beer, wine and whisky, anything that can cleanse the body of those substances can help reduce the severity of a hangover. Activated charcoal does just that. By rinsing such impurities from the bloodstream, AC has come to be known as one of the better “hangover cures” available.
Most people know about water purification systems that are based on AC, and this is indeed one of the substance’s key economic uses. Nearly every water filtration system sold in retail stores uses some form of AC in its design.
A subset of the “new minimalism,” simple eating has picked up steam in the past few years among consumers who are tired of complicated lifestyles, chemical-laden foods, and other aspects of the modern industrial society. Simple eating is, simply, a diet based on whole foods, and foods that have very few additives. Quite a few advocates of this trend are vegetarians, but that’s not a requirement for the “simple eating” practice.
Probably the most obvious thing about enthusiasts is that they add organic fruits and vegetables to their meals. Long a suggestion by doctors and nutritionists, the addition of more whole, natural food to a person’s diet has been shown to lower cholesterol, reduce heart disease, and act as a potent weapon against dozens of major ailments.
Learn More about the Hottest Nutrition and Fitness Trends
Stay ahead of the cultural curve by learning more about the benefits of boxing as a workout method, seeing how activated charcoal can help just about anyone maintain health, and getting the facts about simple eating. It’s all good.
Doug Werner’s little unassuming paperback book has been a perennial bestseller for almost 20 years now, and for good reason. He simple writes about his own experience as a “student” boxer, having kept a detailed journal when he took a series of lessons from a trainer.
The result is a no-frills account of what it takes to begin to train. There are short, easy to understand chapters on dozens of key subjects: how to choose essential equipment, how to stand, the best drills for beginners, exercise tips specific to boxing, overall health, and more.
Werner’s book is a favorite for do-it-yourself folks who want to learn as much as they can about boxing before signing up for a “live” lesson or class. The book is a good example of what “how to” instruction should be: simple, direct, and honest. Indeed, Werner lists several disadvantages of boxing training and explains that it is not for everyone. But those who want to take the plunge and learn how to do a proper boxing workout could find no better place to begin.
Here is the “big book” on this trending topic. Author David Cooney goes into detail about the long history of activated charcoal as a health supplement, medicine and chemical treatment. Also commonly known as activated carbon, the substance has been around for ages and is currently enjoying a revival of interest due to its effectiveness and low cost.
Cooney explains how AC works to relieve abdominal gas, hangovers, certain types of poisoning, and many more ailments, both ancient and modern. He explores the many forms of the substance (tablets, powders, etc.), explains how it is manufactured, discusses optimal doses, and even relates the best ways to store it in your home.
This is one of those “everything” books, where the author literally covers every conceivable aspect and niche of a topic, and does so in depth. That is what makes it such a perfect reference and guidebook for anyone who is interested in learning about activated charcoal.
Whole-food recipes and “clean, simple” eating guidelines are the primary focus of “Clean Eating Made Simple.” The many recipes are, of course, simple to prepare and completely nutritious. A Rockridge Press publication, the book has the feel of a reference/cookbook for someone who owns no other cookbooks. But it’s a great place to begin if you are interested in simplifying everyday meals. The authors call the meal plans “life changing,” and that might be true. In fact, the central point of the book is that simple, whole foods are the road to better health. The combination of fresh produce, whole foods, and simple recipes completes the philosophical circle: Simple eating can be both healthful and delicious.
Everything Old is New Again
It’s ironic that a home remedy and health supplement that was first used to treat water more than 2.000 years ago is considered a “new” trend, but activated charcoal has indeed been around for many centuries. As for boxing, the first recorded match took place in 1681, long before U.S. suburbanites fought through rush hour traffic to get to their 6:30 p.m. “boxing training” group class at the gym.
As for simple eating, even its modern advocates point out that the practice is actually a return to a very old practice of eating what is necessary and avoiding additives. Indeed, the three up-and-coming fitness and wellness trends for 2018 are not much more than new twists on very, very old practices.
Note: The above discussion is not intended to be taken as medical advice of any kind, and should not be relied upon for cures, remedies or any change of physical condition. Readers who think they have health problems should consult a medical professional and should always ask their doctor before starting any kind of exercise or fitness program
Let us know your opinions about what might be the big breakthrough trends for next year. Feel free to comment below or visit our Facebook page to add to the discussion.