- Manuela PINTADO (Universidade Católica Portugesa, Portugal)
- Pablo RIBOTTA (Universidad Nacional de Cordoba, Argentina)
Functional Food is a natural or processed food that contains known biologically-active compounds which when in defined quantitative and qualitative amounts provides a clinically proven and documented health benefit, and thus, an important source in the prevention, management and treatment of chronic diseases of the modern age.
Biologically-active compounds are extranutritional constituents that typically occur in small quantities in foods, vary widely in chemical structure and beneficially affect health and well-being.
Aspects of health linked with some of the most developed aspects of nutrition science include:
- better early development and growth;
- health maintenance (immune function, gastrointestinal health, mental health, health in ageing, physical performance);
- reduced risk of obesity;
- reduced risk of chronic diet-related diseases (cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and metabolic disease, musculoskeletal disease).
The European Commission has identified some key challenges to developed:
- identify potential functional ingredients that could provide benefits in terms of health and well-being;
- identify individual biological responses to functional foods;
- define the bioavailability of functional food ingredients;
- develop appropriate biomarkers for a wider range of functional endpoints;
- develop the potential utility of nutrigenomics, bioinformatics, proteomics, metabolomics and nanotechnology in the development of functional foods;
- anticipate demand for personalised nutrition and the potential role of functional foods;
- ensure stability of functional food ingredients during manufacturing and passage through the GI tract to reach the target organ intact;
- establish Dietary Reference Intakes for a wider range of nutrients to enable commercial exploitation of more functional components
The SIG is aimed to:
- implement education and research that can exploit the potential functional ingredients and that ensure stability of functional food ingredients during manufacturing offering new opportunities for the food and agricultural industry
- provide training activities on the several aspects of the bioactive compounds applied to food and biological systems
- exchange ideas and methodologies
The main objectives of the SIG is the creation of a reference group in functional ingredients and the promotion of exchange of ideas in view of preparation of common research projects.
The SIG is open to all interested people that would like to actively contribute and collaborate. For more information send email to Pablo Ribotta (email@example.com) or register <here>. for membership select "non-member registration" and then SIG4.