Flavonoids Seen through the Energy Perspective

Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Dec 24;23(1):187. doi: 10.3390/ijms23010187.


In all life forms, opposing forces provide the energy that flows through networks in an organism, which fuels life. In this concept, health is the ability of an organism to maintain the balance between these opposing forces, which creates resilience, and a deranged flow of energy is the basis for diseases. Treatment should focus on adjusting the deranged flow of energy, e.g., by the redox modulating activity of antioxidants. A major group of antioxidants is formed by flavonoids, a group of polyphenolic compounds abundantly present in our diet. The objective here is to review how the redox modulation by flavonoids fits in the various concepts on the mode of action of bioactive compounds, so we can 'see' where there is overlap and where the missing links are. Based on this fundament, we should choose our research path aiming to 'understand' the redox modulating profile of specific flavonoids, so we can ultimately rationally apply the redox modulating power of flavonoids to improve our health.

Keywords: antioxidants; energy perspective; flavonoids; free radical; redox modulation; resilience.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Flavonoids / pharmacology*
  • Free Radicals / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Oxidative Stress


  • Antioxidants
  • Flavonoids
  • Free Radicals