There is a lack of focus on the protective health effects of phytochemicals in dietary guidelines. While a number of chemical libraries and databases contain dietary phytochemicals belonging to the plant metabolome, they are not entirely relevant to human health as many constituents are extensively metabolized within the body following ingestion. This is especially apparent for the highly abundant dietary (poly)phenols, where the situation is compounded by confusion regarding their bioavailability and metabolism, partially because of the variety of nomenclatures and trivial names used to describe compounds arising from microbial catabolism in the gastrointestinal tract. This confusion, which is perpetuated in online chemical/metabolite databases, will hinder future discovery of bioactivities and affect the establishment of future dietary guidelines if steps are not taken to overcome these issues. In order to resolve this situation, a nomenclature system for phenolic catabolites and their human phase II metabolites is proposed and the basis of its format outlined. Previous names used in the literature are cited along with the recommended nomenclature, IUPAC terminology and, where appropriate, CAS numbers, InChIKey, and accurate mass.
- Dietary (poly)phenols Microbial catabolites/metabolites Nomenclature Food/diet metabolome