glossary

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P

PABA functions in the breakdown and use of proteins in the formation of blood cells.
Pancreatin pancreas enzymes used to aid the digestion of foods. (See enzymes.)
Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5) essential in metabolizing food; aids in the synthesis of various body chemicals, such as hormones and cholesterol.
Pepsin an enzyme released in the stomach that aids the breakdown of proteins. (See enzymes.)
Peristalsis a progressive wavelike movement that occurs in hollow tubes of the body (such as the esophagus and the intestines) by the involuntary contraction of smooth muscles within the tube walls.
pH [potential of Hydrogen] is a measure of the acidity of a liquid on a scale of 1 to 14 with 1 being most acidic and 14 being least acidic (or most alkaline or basic.) A pH of 1 to 6 is considered acidic while a pH of 8 to 14 is considered alkaline or basic. A pH of 7 is neutral.
Phagocytosis the process whereby one cell ingests or "eats" another, as when a white blood cell destroys an invading organism or a damaged body cell by engulfing it.
Phosphatidylserine (PS) increases the rate of protein synthesis during periods normally marked by muscle breakdown. Can aid in memory function.
Phosphorus a mineral vital to energy production; helps build bone and form cell membranes and genetic material.
Phytoestrogen a nutrient naturally found in plants that exerts an estrogen-like effect on the body, usually by binding at an estrogen receptor site.
Phytonutrient any nutrient that is naturally found in plants-particularly those that have special health-enhancing benefits.
Phytoplankton are the autotrophic component of the plankton community. Most phytoplankton are too small to be individually seen with the unaided eye. However, when present in high enough numbers, they may appear as a green discoloration of the water due to the presence of chlorophyll within their cells As a supplement, they are a super nutritious whole food that supports a health promoting alkaline lifestyle, antioxidant intake, and overall cellular nutrition.
Placebo an inactive substance given to satisfy a patient's demand for medication.
Placebo Effect a therapeutic effect observed from an inactive substance (i.e., placebo) which presumably occurs because the patient "believes" that it will occur.
Potassium a mineral that serves as an electrolyte and is involved in the balance of fluid within the body. Our bodies contain more than twice as much potassium as sodium (typically nine ounces versus four ounces). About 98 percent of total body potassium is inside our cells. Potassium is the principal cation (positive ion) of the fluid within cells. Potassium is important in controlling the activity of the heart, muscles, nervous system and just about every cell in the body. Potassium regulates the water balance and acid-base balance in the blood and tissues. Evidence is showing that potassium is also involved in bone calcification. Potassium is a co-factor in many reactions, especially those involving energy production and muscle building.
Potentiate to make effective or more effective.
Proanthocyanidins (formerly known by the trade name "pycnogenols") phytonutrients found in some foods and herbs, particularly in certain types of grape seeds and pine bark, that have powerful antioxidant activity.
protease an enzyme that helps the breakdown of protein, also known as a proteolytic enzyme. (See enzymes.)
Protein the building blocks of the body. Composed of amino acids, which are vital to the body’s growth and function. Supplies valuable enzymes that regulate bodily functions. Key to muscle building and development.
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