WHAT IS ANTI OXIDANTS?
There are several types of reactive species which are developed inside the body due to metabolic reactions. This happens for many reasons like medical dose, pollution, chemicals, food or anything may be the reason. These species are in the form of free radicals or non-radicals. These species are called poooxidants, derived from oxygen or nitrogen. These free radicals carry uneven number of electrons in the molecule. This uneven number in the molecule easily react with other molecules and this way Free radicals develop large chain of chemical reactions in the body and thus oxidation take place. These reactions can damage body tissue, cells, protein, lipid and DNA and causing several life treating diseases. The body itself develops another category of compound to protect those parts. This is called antioxidants. But some times development of anti oxidants inside the body is quite less due to many factors and we need additional supplements of anti oxidants in the form of food or some thing else.
Researchers began to analyze that free-radical damage was involved in the early stages of atherosclerosis and might play an important role in the development of many other chronic health conditions in the year 1990 onward. It was suggested that people who consume few antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables had a greater risk of developing these physical conditions. So started several clinical trials in which antioxidant supplements like beta carotene and vitamin E were studied for their protection against heart disease, cancer, and other conditions. As a result, “antioxidants” became a buzzword and their benefits were notified by the media, by the food experts who began labeling foods as “rich in antioxidants,” and by the supplement industry as they began hyping the health benefits of antioxidant supplements. They were even highlighted as anti-aging ingredients in beauty products too.
IMPORTANCE OF ANTIOXIDANTS AND DISEASES
Antioxidants protect cells in our bodies from damage. Free radicals are substances naturally created by the body when we breathe and digest food. Free radicals can damage cells in our bodies. Every day, cells are damaged and repaired as a normal part of aging. More free radicals are formed when we breathe in smoke or pollution or are exposed to UV light from the sun. This can cause a high amount of free radicals to form. Having a high amount of free radicals in our body can cause damage to healthy cells that may lead to health problems. This damage may increase your risk of diseases such as cancer, type2 diabetes and heart disease. Antioxidants are substances that protect your cells from damage from free radicals, and can even help repair some of the damage. Our bodies’ make some antioxidants but we need to get more antioxidants from food for good health. Wholefoods such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and beans are the best source of antioxidants. The colors of fruits and vegetables are a clue to the types of antioxidants they have. The best way to make sure we’re getting all the antioxidants we need for good health is to choose a rainbow of bright colors of fruits and vegetables. Aim to get at least 7 servings of vegetables and fruit every day to get enough antioxidants. A serving is ½ cup fresh or frozen vegetables or fruit, 1 cup salad or 1 medium fruit. We can also get antioxidants from supplements such as a multivitamin or vitamin C tablets. These supplements can give us a high dose of antioxidants. Taking high doses of antioxidants from supplements can be harmful to our health. When we are on cancer treatment, it’s important to get antioxidants from a healthy, balanced diet that includes whole fruits and vegetables. Food has a variety of antioxidants in the right amounts for good health. This will help protect our healthy cells during cancer treatment. Remember, whole foods are the best source of antioxidants. Taking antioxidant supplements that contain a high dose of antioxidants can affect how well cancer treatments such as radiation work in our body. That’s why it’s very important to talk to our doctor or dietitian before taking any supplements. They can talk to you about your specific health needs to see what types of supplements we can take and how they affect our health.
FOODS RICH IN ANTIOXIDANTS
There are a number of foods that are rich in antioxidants, but we present to you some of the most useful foods, that contain high doses of antioxidants. Do try to include these in your daily diets to obtain the goodness of antioxidants.
|Sl. No.||Item||Main content||Helps|
|1.||Green tea||epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG)||Prevent cell damage, Prevent development of cancer.|
|2.||Blueberries||blueberries belong to a family of polyphenols antioxidants called flavonoids||prevention of brain damage that occurs in old age, reducing blood pressure, lowering low-density lipoprotein cholesterol|
|3.||Strawberries||high levels of antioxidants known as polyphenols||it reduces LDL cholesterol levels as well as the risk of severe heart problems.|
|4.||Beans||high-octane sources of antioxidants||prevention of cancer and chronic inflammation, suppresses the growth of kidneys, bladder and lung cancer|
|5.||Dark Chocolate||Made from the seed of the cocoa tree||Reduces inflammation, regulates blood pressure and lowers the risk of numerous heart diseases.|
|6.||Spinach||Spinach is also a great source of lutein and zeaxanthin||Protect one’s eyes from UV light and other damaging light wavelengths.|
|7.||Pecans||different forms of the antioxidant vitamin E — known as tocopherols||decreases oxidized LDL, prevent many heart diseases|
|8.||Artichokes||highest levels of antioxidants polyphenols, flavonoids, anthocyanins||hampers the growth of cancer, heart problems, and Type 2 diabetes|
|9.||Kale||Kale Is Loaded With Powerful Antioxidants Like Quercetin and Kaempferol||maintaining sound cellular functions, higher kale intake fosters good bone health|
|10.||Red Cabbage||great dose of Vitamin C||cancer-fighting flavonoids, improve eye, teeth, bone, & immune health, reduce risk of various heart diseases and cancer|
Antioxidants by exercise
Several studies have examined the effects of acute exercise on changes in amount of antioxidants in the blood and changes in indirect indicators of lipid peroxidation to provide information on oxidative stress induced by exercise. Because aerobic exercise increases oxygen consumption, many studies have employed prolonged submaximal exercise bouts. Changes in blood amounts of vitamins C and E, as well as changes in glutathione in the blood, have been used to indicate increased oxidative reaction. It is thought that these antioxidants may be mobilized from tissue stores to combat oxidative stress elsewhere in the body.