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Antioxidants Benefits

Antioxidants are a group of compounds which are found in organic materials. In plants, these antioxidants are found in the form of phytochemicals. The main function of phytochemicals is to remove the cancer causing free radicals from the body. Free radicals are associated with premature aging, cancer, and heart diseases. Free radicals are the byproducts of the various complex biochemical reactions occurring in the body.
They are highly reactive and can cause severe damage to the cell walls by simply coming in contact with them. If not suppressed, these free radicals can cause permanent damage to the organs of the body and may also alter the cell and gene structures.

Antioxidants are known to suppress the carcinogenic effects of free oxygen radicals. It is one of the reasons why antioxidants have remained the focus of many researches related to cancers and overall health. The possible benefits of antioxidants are something that has received a lot of scholarly attention. Their possible roles in preventing cancers and heart diseases are still being studied. It has been found that the antioxidants available in herbal supplements have higher bioavailability than the antioxidants received through supplements in pill forms. Fortunately, there are many natural herbal supplements which have high concentrations of antioxidants. There are a lot of physical and environmental factors that cause the increase in free radicals in the body. Exposure to harmful bacteria, smoke, pollution, and cholesterol laden foods are some of the causes of the rapid increase of free radicals in the body. Since there are forces beyond our control that affect the formation of free radicals in the body, it becomes all the more important to consume adequate antioxidants to remove these.

The biggest antioxidants benefits are perhaps that they scavenge the body for free radicals and promote general well being. The body can produce its own antioxidants in the form of various enzymes. However, as we age, the body loses its ability to synthesize adequate amounts of antioxidants. It is because of this that as we grow older, we are recommended to consume anti oxidant supplements. Antioxidants are also found naturally in vegetables and fruits. Vitamins such as Vitamin E and C can also independently act as antioxidants since both of them have antioxidant properties. However, since it has already been found that herbal supplements have higher concentrations of antioxidants, these herbs are preferred over the vitamin supplements. Green tea benefits, for instance, cannot be ignored. Green tea, apart from their regular benefits of weight loss and toxin removal, are also excellent antioxidants. Among berries, acai benefits also offer similar berries. Acai berries are known to flush out toxins. However it has been also found that acai berries are a rich source of antioxidants as well. The antioxidant fruits and vegetables are those which are brightly colored. Since beta carotene is also a powerful antioxidant, yellow colored fruits and vegetables are extremely rich in antioxidants. Other antioxidant rich foods include turmeric, gingko biloba, hawthorn, milk thistle, red clover, and bilberry.

Researches have also shown that the best way to consume antioxidants is to obtain them from a variety of sources. This means that along with herbal antioxidant supplements, it is also important to consume antioxidants vitamins and enzyme supplements. Combined with the antioxidants which are synthesized in the body and those that are present in the food that we consume, the antioxidants can prevent cancers and heart diseases. The antioxidants can also slow down the ageing process, allowing the skin to appear younger for a longer time, the joints to stay lubricated, and the bone material to remain firm.

Antioxidants Benefits for Skin

One of the main mechanisms of aging is free radical damage. Free radicals are indiscriminate and highly reactive chemicals that can cause damage to the structure of the cells. One of the most common sources of free radicals is the burning of food to provide energy, which is something that happens in the cells of our body all the time. Additional damage from free radicals is caused to the skin from pollutants and sunlight. Topical antioxidants can give some protection to the skin against environmental damage and can slow down the aging of the skin. However, the topical antioxidants are not considered to be very reliable. The topical antioxidants benefits for the skin will depend on the permeability of the skin and other ingredients present in the cream. There are many antioxidant benefits for the skin that you can experience by eating foods that are rich in antioxidants. The antioxidant benefits for skin result in an increase in collagen production and improve the skin’s appearance, making it look younger and firmer. The antioxidant benefits for anti aging occur as the antioxidants help the body to eliminate free radicals and protect the cells from damage. In order to experience antioxidant health benefits you should eat different fresh fruits that naturally contain antioxidants. You should also consume more pigments like fruit skins and seeds from cherries, red grapes, oranges, plums, raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, and blueberries which contain antioxidants that are powerful and can reduce the aging process significantly. Vegetables like red bell peppers, broccoli florets, alfalfa sprouts, spinach, and kale also have anti aging benefits. It is also important that you avoid, as much as possible, any exposure to ionization radiation through industrial radiation processes, medical radiation treatments, X-rays, tanning beds, sun lamps, and sunlight. The human body requires around 20 minutes of exposure to ultraviolet sunlight for the production of vitamin D. However, too much will cause mutations to the DNA, which is the basis for the creation of new cancer cells. The antioxidant benefits of coffee help in treating wrinkles and other signs of sun damage as coffee contains polyphenolic antioxidants, which absorb the free radicals that cause such damage. The antioxidant benefits of tea, especially black and green tea, are very compelling as they contain around ten times as much antioxidants as vegetables and fruits. The antioxidant benefits of prunes help in putting a check to the spread of free radicals and prevent diseases like colon cancer, arthrosclerosis, and diabetic heart disease. Because of the many antioxidant advantages it is essential that you consume foods that are rich in antioxidants for optimum health.
Submitted on May 26, 2011