The little introduction to Antioxidants

A majority of people seem to be aware that antioxidants are good for you. We know that some specific foods contain a lot of antioxidants- but what are they really?

What are antioxidants and what do they do for your body?

Antioxidants can either be vitamins or minerals, most commonly Vitamin A, C, D, E, Luetin and Selenium. Antioxidants prevent oxidation in cells, meaning that they function in a way in which prevent oxygen from reacting with other chemicals in our cells. Oxidation processes may lead to cell damage, cancer, heart disease and faster aging [1,2]

The more antioxidants that you consume and have in your body- the less free radicals (highly chemically reactive substances) you will have in your body. Free radicals are substances that are missing a critical molecule and will therfore react with other molecules, even steal them. They injure cells, damage DNA and this create the seed for disease.The good thing is, that during the process of neutralizing these free radicals, the antioxidants are neutralized themselves!

Antioxidants need to be replenished in our bodies so it's important to eat foods containing them. Many people do not consume enough antioxidants, and therefore it's very beneficial to add supplements to your diet to make sure you get enough of these little helpers of the body!

From what fooods do I get antioxidants?

According to research [1] low dietary intake of fruits and vegetables doubles the risk of most types of cancer as compared to high intake and increase the risk of heart disease among other disease.

Antioxidants are found in various amounts in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, and legumes[1, 2]. Some high antioxidant foods include blackberry, redcurrant, raspberry, black olives, green olives, strawberries, orange, blueberries, goji berries, pinapple, red plums, black grapes, grapefruit, tangerines, clementines, cherries, kiwi fruit, pear, peaches, figs, melon, pear, apples, banana and watermelon. [3]

All users are urged to always seek advice from a registered health care professional for diagnosis and answers to their medical and nutritional questions and before making changes in their diet or training.

 

Refrences:

[1] British Heart Foundation. 2014. Fats explained. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.bhf.org.uk/heart-health/prevention/healthy-eating/saturated-fat.aspx. [Accessed 25 July 14].

[2] EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA), 2010. Scientific Opinion on Dietary Reference Values for fats, including saturated fatty acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids, monounsaturated fatty acids, trans fatty acids, and cholesterol . EFSA Journal, 8(3):1461, 107.

[3] Dr. Ben Kim. 2014. Understanding Fats and Oils. [ONLINE] Available at: http://drbenkim.com/articles-lipid.html. [Accessed 25 July 14].

[4] Janice McColl, B.S.P., M.Sc., M.H.. 2014. An Introduction to Essential Fatty Acids in Health and Nutrition. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.bioriginal.com/page-articles/an-introduction-to-essential-fatty-acids-in-health-and-nutrition/. [Accessed 25 July 14].

 

Camilla xx

 

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