What are Nutraceuticals?Nutraceuticals are essentially any bioactive compound which has been broken down from a food product. Bioactive compounds are described as the nutrients found in small amounts in food. The refined form of the compound can also be added to foods to make them more nutritional. Flax seeds are often incorporated into grain products in order to give the food omega-3 fatty acids, which are potentially crucial for maintaining a healthy heart, maturing brain, and eyesight. Nutraceuticals give you health and/or medicinal benefits in a more natural approach, to prevent or treat disease.
Different types of nutraceuticals include:Vitamins, minerals and dietary supplementsHerbal products: garlic, ginger, ginseng, licorice, onion, turmeric Dietary enzymes: bromelain and papainDietary fiberHydrolyzed proteinsPhytonutrients: resveratrolCarotenoids: lycopenePrebioticsProbioticsComponents of a Healthy Diet: Canada’s Food Guide recommends eating a variety of food groups in order to receive all the proper nutrients you need. During times when a food is lacking these bioactive compounds, nutraceuticals can be added so that a healthy diet can be maintained. Disease Prevention: Nutraceuticals are even being used to help prevent diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Diabetes. Studies suggest that Alzheimer’s comes from oxidative stress.
Certain nutraceuticals such as turmeric, lycopene, and ?-carotene are known to have positive effects when used as a treatment for the stress which, in the long run, may help prevent Alzheimer’s disease. In recent years, using nutraceuticals for the treatment of diabetes has become more popular and shown to be greatly beneficial for type 2. Using soy isoflavones have been known to lower the frequency and death rate of type II diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis and certain types of cancer. Omega-3 fatty acids have also been discovered to lower the glucose tolerance in people vulnerable to getting the disease.