plant-based traditional medical practice that uses various plant materials
in modalities considered both preventive and therapeutic.
Functional Foods to Phytopharmaceuticals
In the biochemical world of the body, everything is a chemical reaction. Food as fuel is chemically broken down to get ATP. Essential vitamins and minerals help to form enzymes that carry out the biological reactions of the body. Bioactives are another component of the food we eat. Encyclopedia.com defines “bioactive food components” as nonessential biomolecules that are present in foods and exhibit the capacity to modulate one or more metabolic processes, which results in the promotion of better health”. Some examples of bioactives are polyphenols, carotenoids, and probiotics among others.
As we understand more about phytochemicals and the ways that they affect the body, we are better able to more specifically target disease processes.