Eskin, N. A. Michael Department of Human Nutritional Sciences, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Canada.
Last reviewed:June 2020
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A compound or product isolated or purified from a variety of food sources that is marketed for its medical or health benefits of preventing or treating chronic diseases. In general, a nutraceutical is considered to be any food or food ingredient that is medically beneficial to an organism, especially with regard to the prevention or treatment of disease. The word nutraceutical is a combination of nutrition and pharmaceutical, and was coined in 1989 by Stephen DeFelice (founder of the Foundation for Innovation in Medicine). Numerous nutraceutical products (often called functional foods) with reported health benefits have been introduced, marketed, and sold. In response to the rapid growth in nutraceutical research and production, regulations for nutraceuticals have been established in most industrialized nations. Investigations continue to be conducted around the world to identify new and better sources of nutraceuticals (Fig. 1) that will further reduce the risk of chronic diseases, including cardiovascular diseases, cancers, and Alzheimer's disease. See also: Alzheimer's disease; Cancer; Disease; Food; Food engineering; Food manufacturing; Nutrition
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