2024’s Hottest Wellness Trends Coming Your Way

2024’s Hottest Wellness Trends Coming Your Way
30.12.2023

As the year draws to a close and we emerge from a hazy week of eating chocolate on the sofa in our PJs, it’s also the perfect time to look ahead at what’s to come – particularly in the world of health and wellness.

After all, come January we’ll all have that renewed sense of wanting to live our best lives, eat well, move our bodies and tap into as many ‘good for us’ habits as possible. Right? (Right?)

So, to ensure that you’re ahead of the crowd, here are the health and wellness trends predicted to take 2024 by storm…

Spirit of moderation

Over the last few years we’ve seen the rise and rise of sobriety, in the form of expansive 0% beverage options, booze-free club nights and more, as well as the increase in people pivoting the way they drink in order to be more mindful about their alcohol consumption (adopting the label ‘mindful drinkers’).

In 2024, it looks like we’re set to witness the growth of another area within the drinks sector: low alcoholic options. The likes of Quarter (who make 12% strength tequila and gin) and NICE wine (3.8%) will offer a great middle ground solution for those who still want to imbibe a little, but keep things on the more sensible side.

If a teetotal lifestyle is more your bag, then it seems like adaptogenic drinks (non-alcoholic beverages, like SENTIA or Three Spirit, that still produce some kind of physical or mental effect) will continue to reign supreme too.

Goodbye caffeine

As well as changing the beverages we drink on a night out, it looks like our mornings could also see a different start, with a resurgence in matcha and fancier decaf coffee options, and experts shouting about a growth of 7% in decaf consumption between now and 2027. Mintel have even said one in five have swapped to the jitter-reducing option.

This boom in decaf doesn’t necessarily mean the world is drinking less of the brown stuff though, in fact there’s a theory that this rise could be because we’re drinking more of it than ever (a hangover effect from lockdown) – but don’t want to be climbing the walls all night. So, step forth: opting for decaf, or a mix or buzzy and non-buzzy lattes alike.

Sustainable activewear

As a society, we’re more mindful than ever of the products we consume, how often we shop and the brands we opt for. Couple this with growing concerns about climate change and an increased awareness around the treatment of garment workers, and secondhand shopping has exploded in popularity (with GlobalData predicting the clothing resale market will rise by 67.5% between 2022 to 2026) – but why stop at just dresses and jumpers?

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We at Cosmopolitan UK are officially predicting a boom in preloved activewear and more sustainably sourced gym clothes for 2024. So what if someone has worn a pair of leggings once before prior to listing them on Vinted… you know you can just wash them, right? And you’ll be helping to save the planet (and some pennies) in the process.

If you can’t get over the idea of gymming in secondhand gear though, might we suggest Boody (a brand that uses eco-friendly bamboo cotton to create our fave high-waist leggings) or Girlfriend Collective (chic apparel made using recycled material) for do-good activewear?

You can also check out all of your favourite brands’ sustainability credentials via the Good On You directory.

Back to nature

Next year, there’ll be digital detoxes, hiking (so much hiking) and nature strolls aplenty. We’re getting sick of our screens and want to take things back to basics, a knock-on effect from the ‘hot girl walks’ we all found respite in during lockdown – which were also a nice reminder that exercise needn’t be punishment, it can just be… putting one foot in front of the other.

Plus, given the sharp spike in sales of hiking boots, it seems everyone really is gearing up to get their gorpcore on in 2024. It’s just like walking! Only up a bloomin’ big hill! Dreamy!

Longevity

If 2023 was the year of biohacking, the buzzword of 2024 is very much its sibling: longevity. Yep, our new motivation when it comes to health and fitness is all about expanding our lifespans, inspired partially by Netflix’s 2023 hit docu-series, Secrets of the Blue Zones, which explored the fascinating communities around the globe with a higher than average rate of people reaching the age of 100. Some attribute it to certain foods (sweet potatoes are king apparently), whereas others say having hobbies, daily movement and living close to family is the key.

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Essentially, we’re all going to be tapping into the mindset of building a body that’ll last for life, as opposed to focussing on those short-term goals (although they’re still great for motivation too, so let’s not ditch them entirely!).

A personalised approach to health

As the NHS continues to struggle due to a lack of funding, the impact of Brexit on staffing and an ever-ageing population (FYI there are now more people over the age of 65 than under 5 for the first time), people are feeling more empowered than ever to take their health into their own hands – alongside advice from their GP too, of course. New figures show 41% of 18 to 24-year-olds have used private healthcare. Think: private blood tests offering speedy results and (hopefully) reassurance – whether you’re feeling under the weather or not.

The increased interest in private healthcare is only set to continue next year, with the nation wanting more in-depth data about their wellbeing than ever before, and to know what their personal ‘healthy’ baseline looks like before illness strikes.

A plant-based overhaul

We saw the explosion of vegan and plant-based meat alternatives a couple of years ago, along with the rise of veganism as a whole, with many supermarkets also bringing out their own lines to rival Quorn, Heck and other big players like Moving Mountains.

However, many of these vegan brands have now sadly folded (just earlier this month VBites announced it had gone into administration, not long after Heck axed 10 out of 12 of it’s meat-free sausage offerings and Nestlé bid farewell to its Garden Gourmet range). It seems consumers weren’t happy with the items on offer (some faux meats were too realistic), nor the prices, or perhaps were struggling with the sudden overwhelming range of choice… and so stuck to the brands they already knew best.

It’s not all doom and gloom for the plant-based though, it may simply be the dawning of a new era. Speaking about its predictions for the future of food, Whole Foods Market told Cosmopolitan UK, “The OGs of plant-based cuisine are making a comeback, putting the ‘veggie’ back in your veggie burger and shrinking labels all over the plant-based category. We’re seeing new and emerging protein-forward products with mushrooms, walnuts, tempeh and legumes in place of complex meat alternatives.”

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Which all ties in nicely with our next trend too…

30 plants a week

Health giants Holland & Barrett proudly re-launched its own food range towards the end of 2023, featuring everything from sauces to smoothies to snack-packs, and have labelled them all up with the number of ‘plant points’ contained within.

But, err, what is a plant point? You may ask. Well, it’s formed around the idea that we all ought to be aiming for 30 plants a week – variety is the spice of life, after all – rather than eating the same old ‘5 a day’ over and over. And in the case of 30 a week, plants include not just veggies, but some nuts, grains, herbs and legumes too.

In February 2024, we can also expect dietician Dr Catherine Rabess’ book The 30 Plan, which follows the same principle, to drop too. So it really does look like it’ll be RIP 5-a-day, hello 30 a week!

Racket sports

This year saw pickleball break through as the new ‘it’ game of choice. Next year? According to the latest Pinterest Predicts Report, we’ll all be going barmy for badminton. The moodboard, image and recipe platform says it’s seen a 45% rise in people searching for ‘badminton aesthetic’ and an. 80% leap in people scouting out a ‘badminton outfit’.

Nice to know we’ll all be looking chic whilst chasing our shuttlecocks, then.

Wellness-inspired travel

In our post-pandemic world (*we write this whilst knowing more than one person who currently has Covid*), travel is once again front and centre – but we’re tired. Oh. So. Tired. Meaning more of us than ever are looking to build a break around health, fitness and wellness.

Whether it’s a staycation in a UK-based hotel that offers in-room workouts or a Peloton, or travelling further afield to spend a week in the Grecian sun with the Nielson Active Holidays team (they offer everything from tennis lessons with a pro athlete to yoga and HIIT classes for all guests), we’re moving away from the idea that an all-inclusive boozefest is the only way to relax. Wellness tourism, as per the Global Wellness Institute, is set to grow by around 21% by 2025 – more so than any other aspect of the wellness sector.

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