Box 1. Glossary

From the following article

Functional foods from biotech—an unappetizing prospect?

Kendall Powell

Nature Biotechnology 25, 525 - 531 (2007)



Functional food. Any modified food or food ingredient that may provide a health benefit beyond the traditional nutrients it contains. Conventional functional foods include foods that have benefits added back in the form of food additives, dietary supplements, probiotics or medical foods. Genetically modified functional foods include whole foods or foods processed from crops that have been genetically engineered to include health benefits.

Dietary supplement. A product that contains a vitamin, mineral, herb or other botanical, amino acid, concentrate, metabolite, constituent, extract, or combinations of these ingredients (modified from the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act).

Probiotic. Bacterial or yeast strains that when ingested may provide health benefits through colonizing the digestive tract.

Medical food. A food consumed under the supervision of a physician that is intended for the specific dietary management of a disease or condition (modified from the Orphan Drug Act).