Flavonoids--food sources and health benefits

Rocz Panstw Zakl Hig. 2014;65(2):79-85.


Flavonoids are a group of bioactive compounds that are extensively found in foodstuffs of plant origin. Their regular consumption is associated with reduced risk of a number of chronic diseases, including cancer, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and neurodegenerative disorders. Flavonoids are classified into subgroups based on their chemical structure: flavanones, flavones, flavonols, flavan-3-ols, anthocyanins and isoflavones. Their actions at the molecular level include antioxidant effects, as well the ability to modulate several key enzymatic pathways. The growing body of scientific evidence indicates that flavonoids play a beneficial role in disease prevention, however further clinical and epidemiological trials are greatly needed. Among dietary sources of flavonoids there are fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and spices. Consumption of these substances with diet appears to be safe. It seems that a diet rich in flavonoids is beneficial and its promotion is thus justifiable.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / prevention & control
  • Flavonoids / analysis
  • Flavonoids / pharmacology*
  • Food*
  • Fruit / chemistry*
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / prevention & control
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / prevention & control
  • Protective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Risk Reduction Behavior
  • Vegetables / chemistry*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Antioxidants
  • Flavonoids
  • Protective Agents