Commentary - Journal of Food Nutrition and Health (2021) Volume 4, Issue 5
Nutraceuticals: Probiotics and Prebiotics
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Tsinghua University, China
- Corresponding Author:
- Shaopeng Chi Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Tsinghua University, China E-mail: [email protected]
Accepted date: 17th September, 2021
Nutraceuticals are special products that can be used as medication as well as for nourishment. It is a chemical that has physiological benefits or prevents chronic disease. A nutraceutical is also known as a ‘bioceutical’ which is a pharmaceutical substitute having physiological benefits. Nutraceuticals are classified by the FDA as dietary supplements and food additives under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. Nutraceuticals refer to the product prepared from food sources that provide additional health benefits beyond the basic nutritional content present in foods. The word "Nutraceuticals" is a combination of two words Nutrient nutritive dietary component and Pharmaceutical medicinal medicine. Nutraceuticals are from food industry, herbal and dietary supplement market and pharmaceutical industry. They include designer foods, herbal products, isolated nutrients, dietary supplements and processed soups, beverage, breakfast cereals. Nutraceuticals include therapeutics areas like anti-arthritic, cold, cough, digestion, osteoporosis, blood pressure, diabetes, depression etc. Unlike regular dietary supplements these nutraceuticals are prepared from whole foods to improve health. Research and development is at the peak in nutraceutical field. The need for standardization of the nutraceutical compounds or products increased to produce an impact on the consumers as well as on the nutraceutical companies. The main reason for growth of nutraceutical industry is rise in demand from the consumer’s end.
A probiotic is a supplement that consists of microbial feed which is alive. When it is consumed in required amounts, it shows beneficial affects by improving its intestinal microbes resulting in efficient digestion and absorption. Probiotics dates were first prepared in the form of fermented milks 2,000 years ago. Some particular probiotics are used to treat lactose intolerance, diarrhoea and antibiotic induced side effects in gastro intestinal tract.
These are available in the forms of powders, liquids, gels, paste, granule and capsules. Probiotic agents are nonpathogenic and non-toxic. They are resistant to gastric acid by adhering to gut of epithelial tissue for producing antibacterial substances. Administration of probiotics to humans decreases the risk of allergies including asthma, ear and urinary tract infection. Prebiotics are dietary ingredients that alter the composition and metabolism of the microbiota present in the gut. These are composed of short chain polysaccharides with unique chemical structures that humans cannot digest. There are present in the form of particular fructose based oligosaccharides that are occurred naturally in food or they are added in the food externally. Consumption of prebiotics usually promotes the growth of Lactobacillus species and Bifidobacteria in the gut, which help in improving the metabolism of body. Few vegetables rich in fructo oligosaccharides are roots of chicory, bananas, tomatoes etc. Some of the other examples of oligosaccharides include raffinose and stachyose that are found in beans and peas. Prebiotics provide various benefits like improved lactose tolerance, development of antitumor properties, neutralizing the toxins, and stimulating immune system, reducing constipation, controlling blood lipids and blood cholesterol levels. Every day, 5 g–20 g of insulin and oligosaccharides can be consumed which will promote growth of bifidobacteria in the gut but excessive consumption of oligosaccharides cause Gastro Intestinal problems.