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An Explanation of a Flavonoid


A flavonoid, also known as a bioflavanoid, is better known as Vitamin P and citrin. As class of secondary metabolites, they can be classified into various subgroups depending on the structure, including actual flavonoids that are derived from 2-phenylchromen-4-one, for example rutin and quercetin. You will also find what is known as isoflavonoids derived from3-phenylchromen-4-one and then neoflavonaoids derived from 4-phenylcoumarine. These structures are compounds which contain ketone and are thus flavonols or flavonoids. The terms have also been used to describe non-ketone containing polyhydroxy polyphenol compounds. These structures fulfill many functions when it comes to distribution in plants and are the most crucial elements needed to provide flower coloration due to thier pivitol role in the formation of plant pigments. They can produce yellow or a reddish blue pigmentation that ultimately serves to attract animals to pollinate the flowers.

A flavonoid found in a structure that is secreted by roots of a host plant help what is known as Rhizobia during the 'infection' process of the symbiotic relation with legumes like clove, soy, peas and beans. Rhizobia that live in soil sense these flavonoids and then secretion of 'Nod' factors is triggered and this will then be recognized by the plant. Root hair will deform and there will be various other cellular responses. These flavonoids also help protect plants from any attacks by insects and fungi.

Flavonoids (specifically catechins) are also the most common polyphenolic compounds you will find in the diet of any human. To a lesser extent, you will find flavanols, which are the original bioflavanoids like quercetin. Animals and humans who eat these compounds have been examined and it has been proven that they have healing effects.

When compared, one will find that other active plant compounds do not have such a low toxicity and do not have such a wide distribution when compared with flavonoids. Various human beings and animals will ingest quite low quantities of flavonoid in a normal diet. They can help with various problems, including the modification of allergens, viruses and carcinogens. Flavonoids are even helpful in preventing cancer.


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