Background: Interest in protein–phenol interactions in biological systems has grown substantially in
Methods: The interest has focused largely on food systems in response to reports on the prominent roles of phenolic
compounds in nutrition and health.
Results: Phenolic compounds can have both favourable and adverse nutritional effects. Polyphenols are widely
known for their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anticancer and antiaging properties; however, they have also been
ascribed anti-nutritional effects resulting from interactions with some proteins and enzymes. Interactions between
proteins and polyphenols can additionally influence food quality by altering some physical–chemical and sensory
properties of foods. These effects may be useful to develop new products in food science and technology provided
the nature of physical–chemical interactions between proteins and phenols is accurately elucidated. In this
paper, we review the different possible modes of interaction between selected food proteins and phenolic compounds.
Conclusion: Existing knowledge on the mechanisms behind polyphenol–protein reactions, the structures of the
resulting products and their potential uses is reviewed.