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Functional Food Products and Their Role in Health and Prevention of Disease

Wazid Ali khan1, Jameel Ahmad2, and P K Srivastava3
1. Department of Food Processing Technology, MIT, Aurangabad, MS
2. Department of Pharmacology, J N Medical College AMU Aligarh (UP)
3. College of Agril. Engg & Post Harvest Technology, Ranipool, Gangtok, Sikkim
Abstract—Now-a-days, there has been an explosion of consumer interest in the health enhancing role of specific foods or physiologically-active food components, so-called functional food. This is a new and emerging area of the food and nutrition sciences. The term functional food was first introduced in Japan in the mid-1980s. Although, there is no consensus on what constitutes a functional food, yet it refers to processed foods containing ingredients that aid specific bodily functions in addition to being nutritious foods. However, the functional foods may have potential to modify disease, promote health, and reduce cost of health care. Presently, the functional foods have become a significantly growing industry. These benefits are now permitted to be identified by the Food and Drug Administration in USA. The suitable combination of different natural foods is required to provide specific health benefits beyond the traditional nutrients contained by the individual natural foods. They may be consumed as part of regular diet either as supplementary foods or as substitutes of current faulty diets to promote good health and prevent diseases like cardio-vascular disease diabetes mellitus, cancer and obesity, etc. In particular alpha-carotene and beta-carotene obtained from various vegetables and fruits neutralize free radicals which may cause damage to cells and The cardio-protective effect of fish consumption has been observed in some prospective investigations and ω−3 fatty acids-DHEA/EPA obtained from Tuna fish and marine oils is being reported to reduce the risk of cardio-vascular disease. Prebiotics and Probiotics are being often prescribed for gastrointestinal health. However, the use of probiotic in patients of severe acute pancreatitis has been associated with increased risk of mortality. The field of functional foods, however, is in its infancy and prescription or promotion of health benefits of functional foods must be based on sound scientific criteria. 

Index Terms—functional food, prebiotics and probiotics

Cite: Wazid Ali khan, Jameel Ahmad, and P K Srivastava, "Functional Food Products and Their Role in Health and Prevention of Disease," International Journal of Life Sciences Biotechnology and Pharma Research, Vol. 3, No. 2, pp. 27-34, April 2014.
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