FFC’s Advancement of Functional Food Definition
Background: To create functional food products based on scientific evidence, we must first define functional foods. Previous definitions describe how functional foods improve health and mitigate disease. However, more refined definitions provide a reason for their efficacy–through the activity of bioactive compounds and the measurement of biomarkers, which are the essential tools for gauging the effectiveness of functional foods.
Functional foods are generally linked to health promotion. The physiological effects of functional food or bioactive compounds may vary, but their categories of action include physical performance, cognitive, behavioral, and psychological function, organ or system function, and combating chronic disease [1, 2].
Therefore, establishing a formal definition for these foods will help bring legitimate functional foods to the market. The addition of bioactive compounds, or biochemical molecules that improve health through the physiological mechanisms, improves the definition of functional foods. As a result, the advancement of the functional food definition by the Functional Food Center (FFC) has developed to provide clarity and a more comprehensive understanding of its meaning.
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