ANTIOXIDANTS- The Wonder Nutrient

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What Are Antioxidants?

With the ability to boost memory, improve heart health, prevent disease, slow the effects of ageing AND make your skin glow; it’s no wonder antioxidants are known as the wonder nutrient!

We obtain these mostly through the fresh fruits and vegetables we consume. The powerful antioxidants prohibit the oxidation of other molecules throughout the body.

Their job is to give electrons to free radicals without absorbing electrons themselves. Basically, sacrificing themselves by donating electrons to free radicals to “calm” them down. How nice are antioxidants?

What Are Free Radicals

When molecules in the body oxidize, they can create toxic free-radicals. Even though they can be harmful to our bodies, their production is certainly not abnormal or even entirely bad.

Despite contributing and accelerating the body’s aging process, free radicals are essential players in the immune system. Free radicals are produced as by-products of cellular reactions, metabolising of foods, breathing and other vital bodily functions.

The liver produces and uses free radicals for detoxification, while white blood cells send free radicals to destroy bacteria, viruses and damaged cells.

Eventually, free radicals will harm and age the body over time by damaging DNA, cellular membranes and fats stored within blood vessels and enzymes, as our ability to produce antioxidants in the body declines with age.

Typically, free radicals and antioxidants live in perfect harmony within the body. It’s when these levels become unbalanced as a result of unhealthy lifestyle choices and poor nutrition, that the effects of aging are accelerated.

Why We Need Antioxidants

Antioxidants are vital to maintain and manage your overall health. The most important job antioxidants can do is improve blood vessel quality, to effectively transport blood around our body. Weak, fragile or thin blood vessels run the risk of bursting, which can have irreversible effects to the body.

Stress, poor diet, food additives, environmental pollutions and toxins, along with your body’s natural metabolic process all play their part of invading your body with too many free radicals. Antioxidants work to restore balance within the body, increase vitality and quality of life.

What Antioxidants Do?

Antioxidants address the free radical imbalance within the body and reduce our overall oxidative stress by influencing the body’s immune response to inflammation, allergy and infection.

Antioxidants neutralize free radicals to stop the cellular chain reaction of oxidation, which attributes to many modern-day diseases including muscle and tissue degeneration, heart disease, diabetes and cancer.

A diet high in antioxidants can help reduce the onset of these diseases, maintain youthful appearance, improve the quality of blood vessels and significantly increase one’s overall health and life span.

What Foods Have High Antioxidant Levels?

Food is the most simple and easiest way to introduce more antioxidants into your body on a daily basis. By eating antioxidant rich sources, be it through food, herbs, spices or tea, you can reduce the effects of free radicals and replenish your body to help live longer, happier, vibrant life.

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Top 10 foods that contain high levels of antioxidants include:

1.    Goji berries

2.    Wild blueberries

3.    Dark chocolate

4.    Pecans

5.    Artichoke (boiled)

6.    Elderberries

7.    Kidney beans

8.    Cranberries

9.    Blackberries

10.  Cilantro

 

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Top 10 herbs loaded with antioxidants include:

1.    Clove

2.    Cinnamon

3.    Oregano

4.    Turmeric

5.    Cocoa

6.    Cumin

7.    Parsley (dried)

8.    Basil

9.    Ginger

10.  Thyme

 

Resources

The Savvy Team, 2016 'Antioxidants-The Wonder Nutrient' http://www.savvy-team.com/hww/antioxidants-the-wonder-nutrients/

Dr Josh Axe 'Top 10 High Antioxidant Foods' https://draxe.com/top-10-high-antioxidant-foods/

Dr Josh Axe 'Fighting Free Radical Damage' https://draxe.com/fighting-free-radical-damage/

The Savvy Team, 2017 'The Real Power of Antioxidants' http://www.savvy-team.com/hww/the-real-power-of-antioxidants/