Scientists have discovered from the last several years that human body forms unstable oxygen molecules called free radicals everyday. We really cannot stop it. There free radicals can lead to cell destruction and finally resulting in various forms of chronic diseases. But, by good luck, the body have a defense system against these compounds and they are known as Antioxidants. Though these antioxidants are produced naturally by the human body but they are also found in large quantities in various fruits and vegetables. The antioxidants literally “mopup” radicals.
Commonly, the antioxidants available are vitamin E and vitamin C. The carotenoids such as Beta-carotene is also an antioxidant. These are easily provided if a person is on healthy diet.
Normally, the Antioxidant supplement is administered in the form of combination products because multiple antioxidants have proved to work more effectively that those of a single antioxidant without taking into consideration how high the dose is. Even certain antioxidants strengthens our body’s own defense system. Herbal antioxidants such as ginkgo biloba or green tea is also available.
There are certain conditions like poor diet, cigarette smoking, environmental pollutants, exposure to ultraviolet radiations, which can lead to increased free radicals in the body leading to a condition known as “oxidative stress”. Due to high concentration of free radicals certain diseases like arthritis, sinusitis, vision problems, may occur. It has been seen that high antioxidants intake prevents the risk of various cancers of stomach, prostate, colon bladder, breast, throughout person’s life.
Antioxidants, if taken properly also diminishes the effects of aging. It plays a role in minimizing wrinkling of skin and loss of the muscles elasticity. Antioxidants also prevents memory failure and reduction in immunity.
Care must be taken that Antioxidant supplement should be taken with meal. Food containing small amount of fat increases the absorption of vitamin E and Carotenoids. Generally, two doses of antioxidants are given during a day. There must be stress given on the natural antioxidants. Vitamin C is found plentiful in fruits vegetables mainly dark leafy green vegetable, citrus fruits, cabbage, cauliflower, strawberries, papaya, kiwi. More amount of fruits eaten during a day, may not require a vitamin C supplement.
Vitamin E is found is vegetable oils, seeds and nuts and also dark leafy green vegetables. Orange Fruits and Vegetables chiefly contains carotenoids. Alpha-carotene is found in pumpkin, carrots. Lycopene is found in tomatoes. Apricots, carrots, sweet potatoes are good sources of beta-carotene. Flavonoids are commonly seen in beets, green tea, apple and onions.
Antioxidant combination can be safely used during pregnancy or when breast feeding. Antioxidants normally are not given with empty stomach to any person. If given empty stomach, it can cause milk nausea or may upset stomach. Antioxidants may be available in tablet form, soft gel form or capsule form. New researches have shown that purple berry due to their dark colour is rich source of antioxidants. Moreover it is advantageous that the food high in Antioxidants does not taste bed. So, the best preventive medicine is right in front of our eyes in the form of fruits and vegetables containing Antioxidants.