Polyphenols are a class of phytochemicals found abundantly in plants and plant-derived foods. There are thousands of identified polyphenols, with subgroups including flavonoids such as flavones and isoflavones; lignans; and phenolic acids.

Health considerations

Polyphenols are antioxidants, and are considered a possible explanation for the positive health effects seen with plant-based diets. Direct evidence linking polyphenol consumption and decreased cancer occurrence is not yet conclusive, though reduction of lung and rectal cancer risk has been seen in some studies. There is more consistent evidence of polyphenol consumption reducing risk of cardiovascular disease. There is also evidence suggesting a role in prevention of osteoporosis, neurodegeneration, and diabetes. Individual polyphenols have unique health properties.

May be found in

Fruits, vegetables, wine, coffee, tea, chocolate, cereals, legumes


The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2
Dietary Polyphenols and the Prevention of Diseases
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 3

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