Antioxidants: Differing Meanings in Food Science and Health Science

Chung S. Yang, Chi Tang Ho, Jinsong Zhang, Xiaochun Wan, Ke Zhang, Justin Lim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


"Antioxidant" is a term commonly used in food science to describe compounds that block lipid peroxidation and other oxidative reactions, thereby maintaining freshness and prolonging the shelf lives of food products. Dietary antioxidants and antioxidant supplements are lauded as quenching reactive oxygen species and preventing different chronic diseases, but strong evidence for their beneficial effects is lacking. In addition to the essential antioxidant nutrients, vitamins E and C, there are several well-designed antioxidant and cytoprotective enzyme systems in the human body, which are more important than dietary non-nutrient antioxidants. At high concentrations, many antioxidants could act as pro-oxidants, increasing oxidative stress and inducing toxicity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3063-3068
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of agricultural and food chemistry
Issue number12
StatePublished - Mar 28 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)


  • antioxidant
  • cytoprotective enzymes
  • health
  • peroxidation

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