Foods High In Antioxidants
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Antioxidants are substances that neutralize free radicals present in our body and thus protect it from cellular damage and a host of other diseases. Vitamin A, Vitamin C and Vitamin E are examples of antioxidants and are present in a variety of fruits and vegetables. There is scientific evidence to prove this fact, however, marketing veterans misuse the awareness being spread about the importance of antioxidants and try to sell them to the customers. (See Reference 1)
Free radicals are unstable atoms or group of atoms in which an electron is missing. Hence, they tend to seek the missing electrons from healthy molecules due to which these molecules become unstable. This results in a domino effect that gives rise to more and more free radicals which causes severe damage to the cellular system of our body.
In general bright colored vegetables and fruits are found to be rich in antioxidants. Examples include spinach, leafy green vegetables like kale, Brussels sprouts, broccoli, red bell peppers, carrots, beetroots and other red and yellow colored vegetable varieties. Fruits that have high levels of antioxidants include berries, plums, peaches, oranges, grapefruit (pink variety) and apricots. You can also consume dried form of these fruits. Recent research suggests that blueberries are also rich in antioxidants. (See Reference 1)
While purchasing food items, you can purchase products that are labeled as “super foods” as these contain antioxidants. Different foods contain different types of antioxidants and each of them has their own way to get rid of free radicals from the body. There is no single antioxidant that can eliminate all free radicals; and hence, the best approach is to include a variety of fruits and vegetables in your meal. (See Reference 1)
Some of the super foods such as blueberries are rich sources of oxalic acid. They should not be consumed in excess as high amounts of oxalic acid are toxic to the body and interfere with the digestion process as they irritate the intestinal lining. (See Reference 1) Since some of the nutrients are made unavailable during digestion due to the binding of oxalic acid with these compounds, regular consumption of oxalic acid rich antioxidant foods can result in nutritional deficiencies. (See Reference 1)
Individuals can also consume antioxidant dietary supplements that are available in the market. Some are fat-soluble; some are waters-soluble while some are both. It is advisable to consult your physician to check out what is recommended for your body. Some antioxidant supplements are produced from plant foods and are highly effective.
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