Study after study after study has shown that a diet high in fruits and vegetables is especially beneficial to human health and can even reduce the risk of many serious health conditions. Phytochemicals may be one of the reasons why.
Phytochemicals are chemical compounds produced by plants. They are commonly found in fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, and grains. Phytochemicals are frequently confused with phytonutrients. Whereas phytochemicals include plant compounds that are beneficial as well as those that are detrimental, phytonutrients specifically refer to compounds that have a positive effect. In other words, all phytonutrients are phytochemicals, but not all phytochemicals are phytonutrients.
The distinction between phytochemicals and phytonutrients is an important one, as not all phytochemicals are beneficial. Technically, cocaine, codeine, oxycodone, and nicotine are all phytochemicals. Even ricin, one of the most deadly and potent poisons in the world, is a phytochemical. This doesn’t mean that all phytochemicals are bad, quite…
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