glossary

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F

Fats provide essential fatty acids that cannot be produced by the body. They transport fat-soluble vitamins and regulate blood cholesterol levels. Provide energy when the body’s carbohydrate level is depleted. Provide protection to vital organs. While fats are essential to the body, many people consume much more than necessary to remain healthy.
Febrifuge an agent that prevents or reduces fever.
Feng Shui ancient Chinese practice of arranging home or work environments to promote health, happiness, and prosperity. Importance is placed on color selection and furniture placement in order to promote a healthy flow of chi or vital energy.
Fibre the nondigestible parts of the plants that we eat, such as cellulose, also known as roughage. Fibre is an essential part of our diet.
Fibromyalgia also known as fibromyositis and myofascial pain syndrome, refers to a chronic condition of unknown cause resulting in pain in the fibrous tissues, muscles, ligaments and tendons. The condition occurs mainly in women and is often associated with depression, sleeping problems, irritable bowel syndrome and chronic fatigue.
Fight or Flight Response a hormonally stimulated state to prepare the body for an upcoming threat or challenge, brought on by the stimulation of the sympathetic nervous system, and consisting of such bodily changes as dilation of the bronchial tubes, increased heart rate and blood pressure, etc. It is sometimes evoked as a general reaction to stressful conditions, such as pressures on the job, and if continuous may lead to health problems such as hypertension and decreased immunity.
Flora the beneficial bacteria naturally found in the body that are essential for our health. Examples are lactobacillus acidophilus (the main bacteria in natural yogurt) and bifidobacterium.
Folic Acid a vitamin important in the synthesis of DNA, tissue growth and the production of red blood cells.
Free Radical a highly reactive molecule (usually oxygen) with an unpaired electron. Free radicals cause damage to other molecules by robbing them of an electron. (See also Antioxidant.)
Functional Food Food or food ingredient that has been shown to affect specific functions or systems in the body. Functional foods play an important role in disease prevention.
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