Phytochemicals: Compounds found in fruits and vegetables. There are thousands of phytochemicals. Among them are lycopene (found in tomatoes, among other foods) and flavonoids (found in fruits, vegetables and some beverages). Their antioxidant effect is thought to help reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer.
Bioactive: Although non-essential, this type of compound has the capacity to produce an effect on health. Not to be confused with biomolecules and nutrients, which are essential to the body’s functioning.
Cofactor: a metal ion, such as iron, or a small organic molecule (coenzyme) that binds to a protein and enables it to produce its biological activity.
Collagen: protein found in skin, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, connective tissue, bone and blood vessel walls. It provides strength, elasticity and flexibility to these tissues.
Acute Reference Dose or ARfD: the maximum quantity of pesticide that can be ingested over a short period of time (a day, for example) without risk to health. Toxicity is acute when the product causes immediate health effects. It is a short-term toxicity. As the dose is proportional to body weight, it is expressed in milligrams of pesticide per kilogram of body weight per day.
Chronic reference dose: the maximum dose without long-term effects. Chronic toxicity is the result of prolonged exposure to a more or less low dose of the product, the harmful effects of which may appear much later (months, years, etc.). This is long-term toxicity. As the dose is proportional to body weight, it is expressed in milligrams of pesticide per kilogram of body weight per day.
Immunogenic: causes the formation of antibodies capable of neutralizing it.
Lutein and zeaxanthin: two antioxidants in the carotenoid family.
Micelles: spherical structure composed of molecules. The water-soluble (hydrophilic) part of the molecules is found towards the outside of the sphere, and the lipid-soluble (hydrophobic) part towards the inside.
Oxalates: toxic substances found in spinach and many other foods. In high doses, they can cause dietary deficiency of iron (and other minerals) because of their ability to bind to certain minerals.
pH: stands for hydrogen potential. An acidic pH is below 7 and a basic or alkaline pH is above 7. A pH value of 7 indicates a neutral pH. For example, water has a neutral pH.
Phytates: insoluble salts formed by the bond between phytic acid and iron (or zinc, copper, cobalt, manganese, calcium). Many cereals and legumes contain phytic acid.
Serotonin: chemical compound produced by neurons to ensure various functions such as sleep, pain, mood, appetite, temperature regulation and blood vessel dilation/constriction.
Oxidative stress: Oxidative stress occurs when the body is not up to the task of destroying free radicals, unstable molecules that destroy cells.