The majority of most of us can’t help but turn to Dr Google when we’ve got a health-related question. Sometimes it’ll send us into a spiral of hypochondria but sometimes it’ll provide genuinely useful advice.
Inspired by CNN’s analysis of Google Trends data from January to mid-December – narrowing down search terms into “what is” and “how to” – we’ve determined the queries that increased the most amongst Aussies in 2017.
The keto diet
Topping this list of eating trends in 2017 has to be the ketogenic diet, with searches on the topic increasing by 350 per cent.
“There has been a renewed interest in low carbohydrate, high fat (LCHF) diets in recent years, after their first wave of popularity in the 1970s,” Accredited Practising Dietitian, Nicole Dynan, told Women’s Health.
“A ketogenic diet relies on fat as the key source of energy, while severely limiting carbohydrates, and allowing moderate amounts of protein,” she explained. “As the main source of energy, the body breaks down fat for energy, which leads to a build up of acids called ‘ketones’ in the body. This process is known as ‘ketosis’.”
This process often results in significant short term weight loss, but Nicole warns that it’s a difficult diet to maintain. You can read more about what the keto diet involves here.
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is a hormonal disorder often marked by irregular periods, struggles with fertility, acne, hirsutism, and enlarged ovaries with small cysts on the outer edges. It affects around one in 10 women but experts say that up to 70 per cent of sufferers don’t know they have it. Searches for the term increased by 3050 per cent in 2017, which might be down to the fact that more and more women are speaking openly about their experiences with the condition.
Pete Evans has been a fan since way back when but it seems that searches for how to activate almonds are still on the rise. The query saw a 450 per cent jump in 2017.
Stop a panic attack
As many as 40% of Australians will have a panic attack at any time in their lives and it can often be a paralysing experience.
“A panic attack is most easily defined by the physical symptoms that happen,” registered psychologist and SANE Australia Help Centre Manager Suzanne Leckie told Women’s Health.
“Generally, for whatever reason, and the triggers can be clear or triggers can be mysterious, but the body will switch into fight or flight mode, which is basically a survival mechanism from back in the day when threats were mostly physical.”
“The heart starts racing, breathing becomes shallow and fast, there might be trembling and sometimes in the more severe panic attacks there can be chest pains.”
Drink apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is basically considered a cure all these days with a cult-like following, despite there being little research into its benefits. Given its pungent smell and harsh taste it seems only natural that so many people have needed to Google how to actually drink it. For the record – proponent recommend watering it down with a ration of two tablespoons of vinegar to a glass of water.