Ask Mira : Eating Right to Live Happy & Healthy

I always mention the word antioxidant in my articles, and a lot of people have since asked me to explain more about what are antioxidants.

So here you go:

Oxidative reaction: First we need to understand what an oxidative reaction is. High levels of blood cholesterol, high levels of blood sugar, high blood pressure, smoking, the surrounding pollution, and different types of radiation create in your body what is known as ‘an oxidative reaction’.

Under the effects of this oxidative reaction, free radicals are generated in your body, which in turn will generate several harmful chemical reactions that lead to severe diseases like heart disease, arthritis, different types of cancer and even more elevated blood sugar and cholesterol levels.

Antioxidants: As everything in our body is balanced, here comes the role of antioxidants. In reality, the antioxidants are some body substances, which completely cut the chain of further oxidation of these free radicals.

An eating plan containing plenty of fruits and vegetables, whole grains and nuts can supply all the antioxidants your body needs. The major antioxidants include Vitamin C, various kinds of berries, dark chocolate, green tea, olive oil, red wine and many more.

Antioxidants are a booming market today with a wide variety of antioxidants available for everything from enhancing memory, immunity and athletic performance, as well as to treat various diseases. The list of such products is too long to reproduce here fully, but below is a list of the most popular antioxidants and their benefits.

Alpha lipoic acid: Found in broccoli, spinach, beef steak, liver, yeast.

Provides protection against neuropathy (disorder of the nerves that are connected to muscles, skin and internal organs), improves glucose blood level in diabetes, protects against heart diseases and cataracts (blurred vision)

Berries: Including, but not limited to, blueberries, cranberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries. Beneficial for Heart health, cancer protection, antiaging, diabetes prevention and urinary tract protection.

Citrus fruits and vegetables: Treats diseases of blood vessels and lymphatic system (which contains immune cells that protect the body against virus and bacteria).

Dark chocolate that contains cocoa flavonoids: Protects against hypertension, heart diseases and skin damage. Lowers stress and anxiety.

Olive oil (polyphenols): good for heart health, cancer protection, antimicrobial activity, lowers cholesterol and LDL levels.

Pomegranate: Recommended for heart and circulatory health, prevents cancer and hypertension

Grape and grape seed extracts, including red wine, because of the antioxidant ‘resveratrol’, which provides protection against cardiovascular diseases, against cancer and improve athletic performance.

Soy: Soy beans, soy milk, soy proteins and other soy products have been found helpful in treating menopausal symptoms, are good for bone heath and protects against breast cancer.

Tea: Helps in the treatment of liver diseases, improves immunity function and weight loss.

Vitamin A: Found in carrot, tomato, spinach, sweet potato, mango, dried apricot, milk, egg yolk. Provides protection against heart diseases, against vision loss and promotes skin health.

Vitamin C: Found in orange, kiwi, pineapple, broccoli, pepper, parsley, cauliflower
Boosts immune system, improves skin health, and helps in iron absorption

Vitamin E: Abundant in nuts, almonds, peanut butter, walnuts, avocados, sunflower oil, egg yolks. Good for improving heart health, diabetes prevention, decreases LDL levels and increases HDL, and recommended for enhancing athletic performance.

These 12 antioxidants are crucial for your health. Start to include them daily in your eating habits, and keep away diseases and stress.

There is nothing better than having a good health and great performance.


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