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Flavonoids - food sources and health benefits

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Flavonoids are a group of bioactive compounds that are extensively found in foodstuffs of plant origin. Their regular consumption is associated with reduced risk of a number of chronic diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and neurodegenerative disorders. Flavonoids are classified into subgroups based on their chemical structure: flavanones, flavones, flavonols, flavan-3-ols, anthocyanins and isoflavones. Their actions at the molecular level include antioxidant effects, as well the ability to modulate several key enzymatic pathways. The growing body of scientific evidence indicates that flavonoids play a beneficial role in disease prevention, however further clinical and epidemiological trials are greatly needed. Among dietary sources of flavonoids there are fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and spices. Consumption of these substances with diet appears to be safe. It seems that a diet rich in flavonoids is beneficial and its promotion is thus justifiable.
Flawonoidy to grupa związków bioaktywnych występujących powszechnie w żywności pochodzenia roślinnego. Aktualne dane literaturowe wskazują, że substancje te, spożywane wraz z dietą człowieka, wykazują działanie ochronne przed wieloma chorobami przewlekłymi, w tym przed niektórymi nowotworami oraz schorzeniami układu sercowo-naczyniowego, a ponadto pozytywnie wpływają na układ nerwowy. W zależności od struktury chemicznej wyróżnia się takie podklasy flawonoidów jak: flawony, flawanony, flawonole, flawanole, antocyjany i izoflawony. Przypuszcza się, że mechanizm działania tych substancji opiera się na ich silnych właściwościach antyoksydacyjnych oraz innych mechanizmach, takich jak zdolność do modulowania licznych szlaków enzymatycznych. W wielu badaniach wykazano ich korzystne działanie w prewencji chorób przewlekłych. Jednakże poznanie dokładnego metabolizmu tych substancji wymaga prowadzenia dalszych badań. Źródłami flawonoidów w diecie człowieka są warzywa, owoce, orzechy i nasiona, a także niektóre przyprawy. Spożywanie tych substancji wraz z dietą człowieka wydaje się być bezpieczne. Uzasadnionym zatem wydaje się promowanie diety bogatej we flawonoidy.
Opis fizyczny
  • Department of Preventive Medicine and Hygiene, Institute of Social Medicine, Medical University of Warsaw, Warsaw, Poland
  • Department of Human Nutrition, Faculty of Health Science, Medical University of Warsaw, Ciolka 27, 01-445 Warsaw, Poland
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