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ANTIOXIDANTS: Our Heroes Of Life!

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Why call antioxidants heroes? Because like heroes, who sacrifice and give up something to save the life of another, so do antioxidants.

Four million baby boomers will turn 60 this year and every year until 2024. As they entered the “old age category” they have declared war on the aging process. We learned in the article “Are FREE RADICALS The Number One Villain That Causes Us To Age?” that there is a constant assault being waged on all our cells.

This article will shed light on this process and the remarkable stability of a class of lifesaving heroes called:

Antioxidants!

In mankind’s effort to find ways to slow down the aging process, these compounds were discovered to play a huge role in countering the effects of free radical damage.

What’s A Free Radical?
In very simple terms a free radical is an atom or molecule that is missing an electron in its outer orbit. This makes them extremely unstable. They will try to steal an electron from a different atom or molecule to stabilize itself. This process causes the affected atom or molecule to become unstable and develop into a new free radical. This begins a chain reaction that can continue until the final free radical steals an electron from the cell wall of some tissue. This results in the disruption of a living cell. This constant process of free radicals stealing electrons from living tissue results in the aging process we all experience.

What’s An Antioxidant?
An antioxidant is a molecule that freely gives away its outer electrons. Thus, it will give the free radical its needed electron to return it back to a stable compound. Now, you might be thinking that this molecule will become a free radical. Here is the really impressive aspect of this process. They do not become free radicals because they are stable in either form (with or without an even number of electrons in their outer orbit). This stability allows them to act as free radical scavengers to help prevent cell and tissue damage.

3 Most Common Antioxidants
If it weren’t for the remarkable stability of these compounds, as they freely give their electrons to stabilize free radicals, we would age quite rapidly. The three most commonly known ones are:

It is extremely important to note that these compounds are all critical for proper health. The body cannot manufacture them. They must be supplied in the diet. That’s why nutritionists encourage us to eat a balanced diet consisting of 5-8 servings of fruits and vegetables per day.

Additional Protection!
As nutritional scientists continue to explore this realm of antioxidants, and their ability to offset free radical damage, some amazing compounds are being discovered like:

Final Notes
This is just the tip of the iceberg regarding antioxidants. This article doesn’t even cover some of the newly discovered super foods like Brazilian Açaí which have tremendous anti aging properties. It is important to note that antioxidants work synergistically in providing their protection against free radical damage. Thus, it is better to take smaller doses of a variety of these compounds than just a large amount of only one type. For most fruits and vegetables the majority of the beneficial properties are contained in the skin.

Since free radical damage is the leading cause of aging it makes perfect sense to consume foods and products that contain antioxidants. This reduces free radical damage to help slow down the aging process.

Until next time, may we both age youthfully!

Synergistically yours,
dan

P.S.   I would recommend the following article to help you understand this dynamic as you build an effective anti aging strategy that improves your overall health and wellness:

Are FREE RADICALS The Number One Villain That Causes Us To Age?

A Checklist of Anti Aging Antioxidant Rich Foods!

 

Return from Antioxidants to Free Radicals

Return from Antioxidants to Aging No More (Home Page)

 

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The information contained in this website and posted articles are for general information purposes only and never as a substitute for professional medical advice or medical exam. The information contained in this website and posted articles has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and should not be used to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease without the supervision of a qualified medical doctor.

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