chapter  1
20 Pages

Functional Foods and Their Impact on Nutrition and Health: Opportunities in the Asia Pacific

Countries of the Asian Pacific region have a wide range of nutritional status, with some countries wrestling with problems of undernutrition (like Cambodia, Myanmar, and Papua New Guinea), and others suffering more from health problems associated with overnutrition (such as Australia and Singapore). In between are countries (such as China and Malaysia), where the transition from a closed economy to an open economy takes place, the so-called “diseases of affluence” (obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, and certain cancers) may coexist with those of “undernutrition” (proteinenergy malnutrition, micronutrient deficiency, and food-borne illness). This phenomenon of the double burden of disease is now increasingly common.