Pigments in food are a huge topic which includes several classes of molecules with different chemical and physical properties. Some of these molecule classes are: Carotenoids, flavanoids betalains and porphyrins, which all work as functional - and, or signalling molecules in the nature. Among thousands of different naturally occurring pigments, only relatively few of them are used as colorants in the food processing industry. Strong regulations regulate the use of colorants and testing of toxicity on animals, usually rodents, have to be done before legalisation. Often it is necessary to find a level of acceptable daily intake (ADI) to prevent the consumers of possible negative effects made by the supplements.
Nature offers a large selection of plants that can heal or help many health problems. However, discovering the benefits of each plant extract continues to be a challenge while regulations often add more obstacles. Nevertheless, a registered pharmacist recently shared her list of beneficial plants and herbs for a variety of medical conditions.
Many plant extracts are viewed as natural remedies, but they can still be found on store shelves in neatly packaged bottles next to the vitamins or minerals. Their availability contributes to the large health industry that has formed around natural treatments. Although it is still important to read labels, research ingredients and check recalls, more people are turning to plants as their salvation.