Everything you need to know about antioxidants
The body uses antioxidants to prevent itself from the damage caused by oxygen. When certain types of oxygen molecules are allowed to travel freely in the body, they will cause what is known as oxidative damage which is the formation of free radicals. Free radicals are very dangerous to the body’s tissues and have been connected to cancer and premature aging. Therefore, we need lots of antioxidants not only to look and feel young but also to keep our health in check. Here are some important information you need to know about antioxidants.
What are the benefits of antioxidants?
Antioxidants are a class of molecules that are capable of inhibiting the oxidation of another molecule. Your body naturally circulates various nutrients in your body due to their antioxidant properties. It also manufactures antioxidant enzymes in order to control free radical chain reactions. Some antioxidants are produced by your body, but some are not. In addition, your body's natural antioxidant production can decline as you age. So, as you age you might need antioxidant supplements to stay healthy and young. Some of the benefits of consuming antioxidant rich foods includes slower aging, healthy glowing skin, reduced cancer risk, detoxification support, longer life span, repair damaged molecules, and stimulate gene expression and endogenous antioxidation production.
Is there a minimum level of antioxidants requirement on a daily basis?
Scientifically speaking, there is no RDA or Daily Value set for antioxidants. The levels of antioxidants are however evaluated by ORAC Score (oxygen radical absorption capacity) in which the power of a plant to absorb and eliminate free radicals are tested. So, get a hold of more antioxidants in your daily diet as it may be help in the reproduction of cells in your body.
Generally, there are two types of antioxidants which are enzymatic and non-enzymatic. The enzymatic antioxidant can benefit the human body by breaking down and removing free radicals. They can flush out dangerous oxidation products by converting them into hydrogen peroxide, then into water. Enzymatic antioxidants cannot be found in supplements, but instead are produced in your body. On the other hand, the non-enzymatic antioxidants benefit you by interrupting free radical chain reactions. Some examples are carotenoids, vitamin C, vitamin E, plant polyphenols, and glutathione (GSH). Most antioxidants found in supplements and foods are non-enzymatic, and they provide support to enzymatic antioxidants by doing a "first sweep" and disarming the free radicals. This helps prevent your enzymatic antioxidants from being depleted.
Antioxidant rich foods
Foods that are rich in antioxidant are typically vibrant in colour that are present in a variety of fruits which are berries, pears, plums, and apples. Other than fruits, you can find antioxidants in pigmented vegetables such as red cabbage and red leaf lettuce. So, do look out for these kinds of foods when picking out antioxidant products. Numerous studies have confirmed the benefits of antioxidants and the role they play in maintaining good health and reducing your risk of heart disease, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, and cancer. Pair antioxidants with some vitamin supplements for a complete dietary menu when you can’t afford to eat freshly made meals.