The Most Popular Health & Wellness Content Trends on Social Media

instagram trends Jan 27, 2017

The infamous condition known as January blues can be cured by opening up Instagram and following a bunch of fitness brands. Nothing like inspirational quotes and cute workout threads to keep folks on the detox straight and narrow.

Below are the top 5 wellness content trends we've observed so far in 2017.

It's the best way to get things done.

A photo posted by Carbon38 (@carbon38) on

That magic ingredient.

It’s been a year since we dug into top Instagram content trends within the sphere of health and fitness. As we all know, trends are fleeting, making it essential for brands to keep abreast of what's causing users to double tap within their respective industries.

Not only do these trends represent a great insight into what's driving engagement and growth, but they can also help identify content for other visual touch points, such as advertisements and sales. The time has come to revisit this particular niche where brands inspire fitness, because we're certain that all of you are making good on their 2017 intentions. Right?! 😏

Resolution Central

January is a time when resolutions are fresh and where fitness motivation is still strong...for the most part — making it a no brainer for brands within the health and wellness niche to ride this wave of heightened awareness. The new year is known for shining a huge spotlight on workout inspiration and healthy living, and the Instagram community is all over it. That translates to higher-than-average organic reach for brands operating in this sector.

All of the elements may be aligned to accelerate growth, but nothing's going to happen for your account if your content game isn't on point. You know your latest 9 best be lookin’ 👌. Just sayin'.

While last year's focus was a little bit more narrow, we decided to open things up this go around, broadening our scope to examine the industry as a whole. We analyzed top performing content published by companies that fell under the umbrella (ella ella) of fitness, health and wellness.

It's time to zoom in on the content serving as workout motivation, often featuring fit girls (#fitspo). We're about to remove some of the guess work and learn about what’s earning all of those double taps, aka what’s trending while it’s trending.

And the Top Health & Wellness Content Trends of 2017 Awards Go to...


This is a trend that we saw this last year with @spiritualgangster. So far in 2017, @lululemon's been reaping love with the same thing. In fact, quotes represent the top performing posts for both these brands since the new year.


Average engagement rate: 1.37%
Engagement on this post: 3.66%


Average engagement rate: 1.27%
Engagement on this post: 1.5%

V minimalistic. V millennial. ♠️


Fitness clothing brands (aka athleisure) take note: legging shots have been receiving extra affection lately, as seen in @hipandhealthy and @vimmia_active’s top performing posts this month.


Average engagement rate: 0.49%
Engagement on this post: 1.07%


Average engagement rate: 0.86%
Engagement on this post: 3.01%

Gym outfit: 💯 #vimmiaactive #unleashyourlifeforce

A photo posted by VIMMIA (@vimmia_active) on

fitspo gold.


It’s no secret that video content tends to perform well for fitness brands due to its ability to bring both movement and emotion to life. @athleta’s top performing post so far this year checks off both boxes with a simple Boomerang (see below). The static shot counterpart, featuring the same teacher, came in at number 2.


Average engagement rate: 1.19%
Engagement on this post: 3.44%

Double-tapped ✅.


A fledgling beverage trend that we’ve observed recently has involved both elevated coffee scenarios and hot drinks in pajamas. Highlighting food and drink continues to yield some of the most aesthetically pleasing pieces of content that resonate endlessly with Instagram users.


Average engagement rate: 0.89%
Engagement on this post: 1.3%

Nothing else needed on this glorious Saturday ☀️#juiceflight

A photo posted by JUICE | Served Here (@juiceservedhere) on


Average engagement rate: 1.29%
Engagement on this post: 1.7%

A classic.


Variety is the spice of life (and apparently of Instagram). Something really interesting to note here is that product shots were actually S’well’s worst-performing type of content at this time last year, and now the example below it sitting among the top.


Average engagement rate: 2.22%
Engagement on this post: 4.7%

Born to be wild

A photo posted by S'well Bottle (@swellbottle) on


Average engagement rate: 1.37%
Engagement on this post: 1.77%

Your starting line up for 2017 #APL

A photo posted by Athletic Propulsion Labs (@apl) on

Good things come in 3’s… or 4s.

When all is said and done, the first step in content creation is understanding what is resonating with your current audience, as well as within your industry. Identifying trends can help surface high performing content pillars that will ensure high engagement and drive growth.

Lest not we forget that trends come and go. Quotes and mantras were huge last year and have remained consistent, whereas one of S’well’s top performing posts this year would have fallen into abyss just one year prior.

The moral of the story: stay ahead of the curve and keep content fresh! Namaste. 🙏

Wanna learn more about content trends? Get in touch today (right after you sign up for our weekly newsletter 👇).

Jenny Pratt

Brand Strategist at Dash Hudson