The nuclear factor E2-related factor 2 (Nrf2) plays an important role in cellular protection against cancer, renal, pulmonary, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases where oxidative stress and inflammation are common conditions. The Nrf2 regulates the expression of detoxifying enzymes by recognizing the human Antioxidant Response Element (ARE) binding site and it can regulate antioxidant and anti-inflammatory cellular responses, playing an important protective role on the development of the diseases. Studies designed to investigate how effective Nrf2 activators or modulators are need to be initiated. Several recent studies have shown that nutritional compounds can modulate the activation of Nrf2-Keap1 system. This review aims to discuss some of the key nutritional compounds that promote the activation of Nrf2, which may have impact on the human health.
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