Classifying Compounds that Benefit Health
Aside from vitamins and minerals, many other compounds in plant foods benefit the immune system. The term phytochemicals (‘phyto’ meaning plant), refers to all chemicals found in plant foods. For the sake of clarity, we further separate two general classes of phytochemicals into antioxidants and polysaccharides. Any given plant food may contain chemicals that fall into one, two, or all three of these categories.