Antioxidants

Super Antioxidants That Neutralize Free Radicals

Antioxidants counteract the damaging effects of oxidation in our body’s tissues. They counteract the potentially weakening effect that free radicals have on healthy cells. Antioxidants enter the body in the form of nutrients and enzymes coming through diet. These include vitamins C, E, and carotenoids. They are believed to have an ability to stop or slow down the development of such chronic conditions as cancer, stroke, and Alzheimer’s.

Super Antioxidant Food Components

Among the most productive carotenoids found are beta-carotene, lycopene and lutein. Their combatting ability against free radicals is well known. Super antioxidant foods high in carotenoids include those that are red, orange, deep-yellow color as well as many dark-green leafy vegetables. Tomatoes, carrots, spinach, sprouts, sweet potatoes, winter squash and broccoli are also excellent for getting ample supplies of carotenoids.

Vitamin E is often found in vegetable oils, whole-grain products, seeds, nuts and peanut butter. Vitamin C is well known for it’s ability to protect the body from infection and damage to body cells. Citrus fruits, strawberries, sweet peppers, tomatoes, broccoli and potatoes are all high in Vitamin C.

Antioxidants in Whole Foods and in Supplements

Selecting foods rich in vitamins and minerals boost the immune system and maximize dietary benefits. While whole food nutritional benefits are unparalleled, a lot of people use supplements, powders and capsules to easily incorporate things into their diet without having to take a lot of time to prepare and cook.

There are also some herbs, fruits, and vegetables that are not found locally for the people who want to use them, creating a necessity for supplements. Some people take the seasonal and locally produced approach while others in cold climates get tropical fruits shipped, for example. It’s a matter of personal preference.

Super Antioxidant Fruit Suggestions

  • Avocados are fatty, but their fat is healthy and actually helps protect the heart. They supply essential omega fatty acids, folic acid, lutein, potassium, and Vitamin E.
  • Red and blue berries have vitamins and minerals in them that have been recognized for their ability to reduce inflammation along with general antioxidant benefits.
  • Apricots are antioxidant rich with lots of beta carotene and lycopene. They can prevent cholesterol problems from advancing as well.
  • Dark colored grapes are full of phytochemicals, a particular type of antioxidant that that has been found to protect against cancer and heart disease.
  • Acai, the fiber- rich fruit of an Amazon palm tree contains amino acids and essential fatty acids along with it’s antioxidants.
  • Pineapple has long been known as a digestive aid, but it’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties are also noteworthy. It is highly rich in vitamin C as well as manganese.

Antioxidants Through Seeds and Nuts

Nuts and seeds offer healthy fats, proteins, minerals, and phytochemical. Most nuts also contain phytochemicals such as resveratrol that helps lower cholesterol. Flax and chia seeds contain concentrated amounts of omega fatty acids and fiber. Flax and sesame seeds contain lignans, a fiber known to lower cholesterol, prevent high blood pressure, and cancer. Additionally, they are rich in calcium, potassium, zinc, and iron.

Good Antioxidant Vegetable Choices

  • Broccoli contains a lot of fiber, antioxidants, vitamin C, iron, and calcium. The vitamin C makes that iron easier to absorb, too.
  • Cabbage provides vitamin C and fiber. It contains iodine, which has been linked to increase nervous system and brain health. Additionally, its sulfur compounds fight infection and disease.
  • Carrots are rich in beta-carotene (vitamin A), which helps the eyes, flushes out toxins, and helps lower stress.
  • Oregano is rich in vitamin K, fiber, and omega 3 fatty acids. It also contains while antibacterial properties.
  • Peas are both antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. The spectrum of minerals and vitamins they provide is broad and are known to help control sugar levels.
  • Peppers are among the richest sources of vitamins A and C. Capsaicin, the antioxidant that makes peppers spicy, may also play a role in lowering cholesterol.

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