How people eat and what they choose to eat is changing. Over the past 10 years, food has taken on a greater value and sense of importance. Besides being a source of fuel and enjoyment, food, research shows, may be an effective tool in taking care of one's health and a means of beating the odds of developing certain diseases, such as heart disease or some kinds of cancer. Given this new role for food, what's the outlook for food in the future? Here are two trends being forecast.Functional foods will flourish-Functional foods are foods or food ingredients that provide health benefits beyond basic nutrition. Examples of functional foods are juices fortified with calcium to help protect against osteoporosis, margarine that can lower cholesterol levels, and cereals fortified with folic acid to reduce the risk of certain birth defects. The development of these types of products is the fastest growing segment of the food industry. Watch for an explosion of new products promising to help you fend off disease. There already are beverages brimming with antioxidants to hopefully protect against cancer or colds, healthful bacteria added to yogurt that may help strengthen the immune system, and fiber added to cereals or breads that may help lower cholesterol levels.Surveys show that shoppers believe eating certain kinds of foods may help them reduce their need for medication and help them stay well. One-third of consumers actually select a food because it has a specific medicinal purpose. Some of the hot health issues in the future will be food products for: