What are Some Examples of Functional Foods?

What are some examples of functional foods?
What are some examples of functional foods?

airfood recipe  As functional foods have been a much-discussed topic in recent years, people are more exposed to the concept of it. And as it happens, more and more people are interested to know what this functional food is and where to find it. 

So in today’s article, we’ll talk about what functional food is and more about where you can find them. 

Definition of Functional Food

If we’re going to know where you can find it, at least we should see the definition of it. Although there is no universal definition of functional food, it can be said that functional food can prevent various diseases and keep your body fit. These foods are not compulsory to your diet, and they’re not considered preventive or curative to anything. However, still, researchers found out that functional food can be handy for strengthening your body’s metabolism. 

Origin of Functional Food

The concept of functional food originated in the 1980s in Japan, where the world’s healthiest people live. Later in 1994, the US passed a bill called the “Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act ”, shortly DSHEA, which included a functional food section. The Functional Food Center In the USA stated that any food or ingredients with the necessary bioactive compounds are considered functional food. 

Where to get functional food 

Functional food can be found anywhere if you look closely enough. Daily food ingredients like wheat, eggs, milk, and milk-based products can contain certain functional foods. Let’s look at some brief examples of where to find them.

Oat, brown, grits, and flour.

Any products derived from them, such as oatmeal, cereal, and bread. Also, food like fruit jams, cured sausages, fish products, fermented milk drinks, whole grain oats, and fruit drinks with oat β-glucans are great types of functional food. 

What it does-

  • Lowers concentration of blood glucose and cholesterol.
  • Reduces constipation symptoms. 

Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFA)

Oil, margarine, bread, pasta, milk-based drinks, chocolates, and supplemented fruit juices are great sources of PUFA. 

What it does-

  • Omega-3 FA has been shown to lower the concentration of blood triglycerides as well as produce hypotension and arrhythmia effects. 
  • Supplementation of DHA and EPA may also improve health and aid in nerve cell membrane regeneration.
  • Can slow down the aging of the brain and prevent dementia


Miso, tempeh, tofu, soy-based products such as milk, oil, imitation meat, cereal bars, whole-grain cereal products, and bread that contain rye and flaxseed are some of the sources of phytoestrogens. 

What it can do-

  • Phytoestrogens have some weak estrogenic effects, which can help aid symptoms of menopause. 
  • It can subsequently improve hyperglycemia, glucose tolerance as well as circulating insulin concentration. 

Natural antioxidants

Fortified breakfast cereals, milk-based drinks, margarine, and fortified pasta are sources of natural oxidants. 

What it can do-

  • Natural oxidants are the onset of cardiovascular and neurological diseases, cataracts, some types of cancer, and some non-communicable diseases. 

Probiotics and prebiotics—fructans, inulin, and resistant starch

Vegetable juices, cheeses, ice cream, frozen desserts, fermented dairy products such as yogurt, kefir, buttermilk, fermented fruit, kombucha, and fermented meats can produce probiotics and prebiotics. 

What it can do-

  • Probiotics can influence and regulate the immune system as well as improve immune function. 
  • Probiotics can also be instrumental in the treatment of constipation, diarrhea, and the management of irritable bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease as well as irritable bowel syndrome and diverticular disease. 
  • Prebiotics such as fructans can also facilitate the maintenance of good bacteria and facilitate the absorption of calcium, iron, copper, magnesium, and phosphorus. 

Carotenoids- lutein and zeaxanthin

Eggs and egg products, canned corn, and cornmeal are some sources of carotenoids. 

What it can do-

  • Lutein can react with free radicals and protect low-density lipoproteins against oxidative processes. 
  • These are associate with the risk of atherosclerosis and ischemic heart disease; carotenoids, especially lutein, are essential in the prevention of age-related sight deterioration. 

Plant sterols and stanols

Plant sterols and stanols can be found in margarine, yogurt, cream cheese, yogurt drinks, mature cheeses, milk-based drinks, meat products, soy or rice-based drinks, sources for salads, rye bread, chocolate, and mayonnaise. 

What it can do-

  • Plant sterols or stanols decrease total blood cholesterol between 5-11% and LDL by 16%. 
  • Stanols can lower thrombocyte aggregation, which is associate with the reduction of total cholesterol and LDL. 

The above list of functional foods can be overwhelming. But you can always start somewhere. Try collecting some of these foods and consuming them regularly. If you already consume some of them, then try controlling your intake of them. 

Everyone wants to be the owner of a robust and healthy body for an extended period of time. Functional foods can help you go a long way in order to fulfill that want. Consumption of functional food can help a lot by keeping your hormonal changes at bay.

In this article, we tried to explain what functional airfood recipe are and where you can find them. We hope this article is informative enough for you and comes in handy. Happy reading! 

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