NUTRACEUTICALS: Let Food be Your Medicine

NUTRACEUTICALS: Let Food be Your Medicine  Blog | UCBMSH – Life Science Degree courses college in Dehradun( Doon ) , Uttarakhand , India .

It is a very old saying “an apple a day, keeps a doctor away.” What does this mean? Why is it so? It means that something is there in the food ingredients that influence the human health. The philosophy behind is focus on prevention. Hence the term nutraceutical was coined.

The term “Nutraceutical” was coined from “Nutrition” & “Pharmaceutical” in 1989 by Stephen DeFelice. It can be defined as “A food or part of food or nutrient, that provides health benefits, including the prevention and treatment of a disease.” Broadly can be defined as: Nutrients: Substances which have established nutritional functions e.g. Vitamins, Minerals, Amino Acids, Fatty acids, etc. eg. Fatty acids improve body composition and help reducing cancers. Saponins help in reducing cholesterol.


Herbals/ Phytochemicals: Herbs or Botanical products, which help in substrate for biochemical reactions. It plays an important role as cofactors of enzymatic reactions,scavengers of reactive or toxic chemicals andenhancement for the absorption and / or stability of essential nutrients eg.  Carotenoids which play important role as antioxidants, protects against uterine, prostate, colorectal, lung and digestive tract cancer.Flavanoids which play a important role in cellular signaling, inflammation etc.


Dietary Supplements: Probiotics, Prebiotics, Antioxidents, Enzymes, etc.  eg. nutraceutical available in market by the name of Soylife which is composed of soyabean phytoestrogen is good for bone health. There is a need to enhance active ingredients in food, which can only be done by changing food habits to natural diets, fortifying or increasing food with active ingredients and many other ways. Diet rich in nutraceuticals along with regular exercise, stress reduction and maintenance of healthy body weight will maximise health and reduce disease risk.

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  • Neha Saini

    As I am the faculty of Botany, so I am well versed with uses of plants. Hence I can say that the article indirectly focuses on valuable contribution of plants on human health. I appreciate that with the help of this article, students will also be benefited by knowing about the nutritional value of plants

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