Glossary

FOOD

Antioxidants are substances that inhibit the oxidation processes in the human organism. Although oxidation processes such as combustion are an essential part of human metabolism they can also be damaging if they take the upper hand. The human organism maintains a healthy balance with the help of antioxidants, such as vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin E, and specific enzymes.

Congee is a type of traditional breakfast eaten in China. It is a thin porridge or a thick soup made (mainly) from rice, and (sometimes) from millet, spelt, or other grains. It is cooked four to six hours on very low temperature. It has harmonising therapeutic effects on digestion and with the addition of appropriate vegetables, grains, herbs, or meats is used as remedy for specific health problems.

Eating disorders are mental illnesses defined by abnormal eating habits that negatively affect a person's physical or mental health. They include the binge eating disorder where people eat a large amount in a short period of time, anorexia nervosa where people eat very little and thus have a low body weight, bulimia nervosa where people eat a lot and then try to rid themselves of the food, and some other forms.

Microorganisms (or microbes) are microscopic single-celled or simple multicelled organisms. Microorganisms are very diverse; amongst others they include bacteria, yeasts, fungi, algae, and microscopic plants or animals.

Miso is a traditional Japanese seasoning produced by fermenting rice, barley, and/or soybeans with salt and the fungus Aspergillus oryzae. The result is a thick paste used for sauces, spreads, soups, etc. 

Natural food is the term which in its original meaning refers to the food which has been produced as naturally as possible – that is, without use of agrochemicals, synthetic food additives, and genetically modified organisms. Since the beginnings of the natural food movement this term has been misused for marketing reasons in extensive measure because it sounds good, it attracts customers and improves sales. On this website it is used in its pristine meaning and is thus a synonym for organically grown food without organic certification.

Nutraceuticals is a broad umbrella term used to describe any product derived from food sources that provides extra health benefits in addition to the basic nutritional value found in foods. They are divided into two main groups:

Organic refers to the realm of living organisms and the living substances found in them, such as proteins, carbohydrates and fats. It does not include mineral substances found in the living organisms.

Organic food is the food produced according to The IFOAM Basic Standards for Organic Production and Processing. These standards forbid the use of synthetic fertilisers, pesticides, growth regulators, regular preventive use of antibiotics, genetically modified organisms, and products of nanotechnology. Organic food is primarily processed by biological, mechanical and physical methods with a minimal amount of predominantly natural food additives.

Orthorexia nervosa (also known as orthorexia) is an eating disorder characterized by an extreme or excessive preoccupation with avoiding foods perceived to be unhealthy. The term orthorexia derives from the Greek ortho (right/correct), and orexis (appetite), literally meaning 'correct appetite', but in practice meaning 'right diet'.

Phytic acid is found within the hulls of nuts, seeds, and grains. Its role is to prevent seeds from sprouting before there are the right outer conditions. When the seeds are subjected to soaking, lactic acid fermentation, sprouting, or even cooking, the amount of phytic acid is reduced.

Phytochemicals are chemical compounds produced by plants in great variety and numbers, mainly responsible for their colour, smell and taste. The quantity of phytochemicals in relation to the whole plant is very small, but they have nevertheless important positive effects on the human organism, including support in the healing of specific illnesses.

Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) are the daily dietary intake levels of a nutrient considered sufficient by nutritional experts to meet the requirements of the majority of healthy individuals in each life-stage and sex group. This tool is widely used by the medical, dietary and food production sectors.

Vitamins are, according to natural science, chemical compounds which can be isolated from the foods. From a spiritual-scientific perspective there is no difference between these chemical compounds and trace minerals, because both belong to the physical realm of existence. Nevertheless vitamins are important constituents of natural foods, as is the case with other phytochemicals.