Functional food: Friend or foe?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although no official definition exists in the United States, functional food may be described as a food with ingredients that provide a health benefit beyond the food itself. However, no guidelines were found, and juices, soda pops, breakfast cereals and snack foods that contain herbs have recently become available at the time of this writing. These may be harmful or unnecessary, and may result in an overdose of an herb. Many manufacturers are classifying these foods as dietary supplements to avoid FDA regulation or the need to prove the added ingredients as GRAS (Generally Recognized as Safe), as are required for food additives. The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) recently filed a petition with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to halt the sale of 75 functional foods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)65-73
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Herbal Pharmacotherapy
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2001


  • Dietary supplements
  • Food
  • Functional food
  • Herbs

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