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Nutrients 2010, 2(6), 611-625; doi:10.3390/nu2060611
Review

The Role of Functional Foods, Nutraceuticals, and Food Supplements in Intestinal Health

1,2,*  and 1
1 Department of Microbiology, Biochemistry, Biotechnology and Biotechnology, University of Maribor, Faculty of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Pivola 10, 2311 Hoče, Slovenia 2 University of Maribor, Faculty of Medicine, Slomškov trg 15, 2000 Maribor, Slovenia
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 6 May 2010 / Revised: 21 May 2010 / Accepted: 30 May 2010 / Published: 1 June 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food and Function 2009)
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Abstract

New eating habits, actual trends in production and consumption have a health, environmental and social impact. The European Union is fighting diseases characteristic of a modern age, such as obesity, osteoporosis, cancer, diabetes, allergies and dental problems. Developed countries are also faced with problems relating to aging populations, high energy foods, and unbalanced diets. The potential of nutraceuticals/functional foods/food supplements in mitigating health problems, especially in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, is discussed. Certain members of gut microflora (e.g., probiotic/protective strains) play a role in the host health due to its involvement in nutritional, immunologic and physiological functions. The potential mechanisms by which nutraceuticals/functional foods/food supplements may alter a host’s health are also highlighted in this paper. The establishment of novel functional cell models of the GI and analytical tools that allow tests in controlled experiments are highly desired for gut research.
Keywords: nutraceutical; functional food; food supplement; intestinal health; probiotic; intestinal cell models; gut research nutraceutical; functional food; food supplement; intestinal health; probiotic; intestinal cell models; gut research
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Cencic, A.; Chingwaru, W. The Role of Functional Foods, Nutraceuticals, and Food Supplements in Intestinal Health. Nutrients 2010, 2, 611-625.

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