We hear about antioxidants being good for us, but what are they, and what are their benefits? Learn the best sources of antioxidants and why you need them for better health.
Antioxidants are naturally occurring components in foods that support the growth of healthy cells, protect cells against premature and abnormal aging, help fight age-related macular degeneration and provide support for the body’s immune system. As well as this, antioxidants assist to counter to the damaging effects of oxygen free radicals that damage cells though external factors such as x-rays, ultra-violet radiation and pollution.
Free radicals are molecules with unpaired electrons and are everywhere, in the air, our bodies and the materials around us. During their quest to find another electron, they are very reactive and cause damage to surrounding molecules especially when coming into contact with important cellular components such as DNA. This may result in cells functioning poorly and may die.
There are many different effects of free radicals, some of which include:
* Deterioration of the eye lens, which contributes to blindness
* Inflammation of the joints, which causes arthritis
* Damage to the nerve cells in the brain, which contributes to medical conditions such as Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease
* Increase risk of coronary heart disease caused by free radicals encouraging low-density lipoprotein cholesterol to stick to artery walls
So ensuring we have healthy intake of antioxidants from our diet is very important for helping keep free radicals in check.
Fruits and vegetables are the best known antioxidant-rich foods. Research has indicated that the risk of chronic disease is considerably lower in people who regularly consume 5-7 serves of fruit and vegetables every day.
Examples of these naturally high antioxidant sources include: grape seed extract, green tea and superfruits like acai, goji and mangosteen.
For some people who struggle to maintain this recommended daily intake, or for those who have higher needs for antioxidants, concentrated food supplements can play an important role in combating free radicals, such as Siberian Red. The tonic contains pure extract of Siberian fir needles, which are high in antioxidants and nutrients, and has an Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity value of 21,500 (per 100g) in comparison to most common fruits and vegetables, which fall between 100 and 9,500.
An antioxidant-rich diet is not only good for your health, but for your skin and hair. We’ve listed seven super foods for radiant skin, many of which contain antioxidants.
For more information about Siberian Red, visit www.siberianred.com.