The Six Major Subtypes of Flavonoids, Explained

November 18, 2021 | By Angela Maida
essential oil flavonoids

Every plant contains an untold number of compounds, such as vitamins, minerals, and acids. Also among these compounds are flavonoids, which give plants their distinctive colors. They also have significant antioxidant, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory properties that are significant to essential oils. Scientists have identified over 6,000 varieties of flavonoids, organizing them under several specific categories. Having the six major subtypes of flavonoids explained will shed light on this important compound’s role in essential oils.


One of the more popular varieties of flavonoids, flavonols are known to have antioxidant properties, increasing the production of antioxidant enzymes in red blood cells and decreasing lymphocyte DNA damage. They’re often found in apples, berries, broccoli, and onions.


Flavan-3-ols are related to flavanols, with certain structural differences. These flavonoids are more known for their abilities to reduce inflammation in the body and fight against cardiovascular diseases. We find them in berries, chocolate products, and a variety of teas, so green tea essential oil is a good way to incorporate them.


Anthocyanidins and flavan-3-ols are often associated with each other because they have similar benefits. Both are anti-inflammatory, and they may help with cardiovascular health. Anthocyanins are also associated with red pigmentation in fruit such as strawberries and cranberries.


Flavanones are primarily associated with anti-inflammatory properties. However, they’re also associated with improved brain function and focus. You’re most likely to find them in citrus-based essential oils such as lemon and grapefruit.


Flavones are both anti-inflammatory and antioxidant as well as the flavonoids behind blue and white pigmentation. We find them in a wide variety of essential oils, notably chamomile, peppermint, and parsley.


You’ll find isoflavones most often in legumes such as soy, fava beans, and chickpeas, so we don’t frequently find them in essential oils. Even so, they’re still worth noting as one of the six subtypes of flavonoids. Isoflavones may help with hormonal regulation as well as cellular health.

The world of plants is multifaceted and fascinating. And if you’re interested in learning how to make homemade essential oils, understanding it is necessary. If you’re ready to start exploring those worlds, Extractcraft has the equipment you need to create your own oils. Contact us today to learn more!