Antioxidants are natural substances that exist in the form of vitamins, minerals and other compounds in foods. They are believed to prevent disease by fighting free radicals that are substances harming the body if left unchecked. These radicals are formed by normal body processes like pollution in the air, smoking and contaminated foods.
Antioxidants help to kill bacteria and fight free radicals and protect cells from oxidation. Lack of antioxidants in the diet increases the susceptibility to cancer cells and premature aging. It may lead to poor health and degenerating conditions. Incorporating more foods rich in antioxidants into the daily diet may helpto providethe cells with the materials they need to fight damaging oxidation and promote good health.
Free radicals are formed when cells in the human body just like an atom breaks off, or leave a molecule with an odd or unpaired electron which attacks nearest stable cell molecules and damage a cell as a whole.
This cell destruction is in millions count due to stress, anger, and other environmental factors such as pollution, radiation, smoking, etc.
Thus antioxidants are helps get rid of these free radicals within the body. Hence, eat loads of anti-oxidants packed food sources and destroy the free radical cells that effects enzymes, disturbs protein synthesis, accelerates aging, cells death, oxidizes bad cholesterol that leads to chronic inflammation, stiffening of arteries and other diseases.
Here I give you some basic list of food sources that you can consume to fight the toxins out off your body, slowdowns ageing process and helps fight risks of cancer, colds and contribute to overall health.
- Green tea: Green Tea is now the hottest of hot trends in the health and beauty industry that contains specific antioxidants called EGCG found only in Green tea, making it a special and most powerful Anti-Oxidant sources or foods for your body.
- Tomatoes: Tomatoes are power packed with the antioxidant “lycopene” which is more potent in cooked tomatoes, or as a gazpacho, tomato sauce or tomato jams.
- Greens and Vegetables that include amazing anti-oxidant supplements include: red beans, black beans, Kale, Spinach, Brussels sprouts, Alfalfa sprouts, Broccoli flowers, Beets, Red bell peppers, Onions, Corn, and Eggplant are rich in anti-oxidants.
- Fruits like Prunes, Raisins, Blueberries, Blackberries, Strawberries Raspberries, Plums, Oranges, Red grapes, Cherries are the very best sources of anti-oxidants.
- Citrus fruits: the vitamin C effects in Lemon, grapefruit and oranges are a great way to boost the antioxidants in your diet.
- Cinnamon: Cinnamon is one of the readily available spices in India which is present in almost all the Indian kitchens. Cinnamon is packed with anti-oxidants that control bad cholesterol levels and blood sugar levels. The best way to use Cinnamon is to add this spice to your curries or sauces or can even a put a piece of it in a cup of tea decoction. While, Ginger is another great source of anti-oxidant to keep bad cholesterol and diseases at bay.
- Pomegranate: Drink a glass of Pomegranate juice and experience the wonderfulness of Antioxidants found in pomegranate that help fight heart diseases, LDL cholesterol and plaque buildup.
- Dark chocolate: Dark chocolates with 70% cacao have Flavonoids has a high count of potent antioxidants.
- Nuts – a delicious way to get rid of free radicals, blood pressure problems, soothes coughs, and increases blood flow to the heart.
- Prunes—this sticky dried fruit is high in antioxidants and is known to be cancer protector and a good source of vitamins. Prunes help to lower the cholesterol and boost the health of the bones.
- Raspberries are loaded with antioxidants and help you lose weight. They are also beneficial in maintaining the health of the heart. It is one of the fruits that are so-called “super foods “because it contains higher amount of antioxidants than other fruits.
- Cloves are known to be a great antibacterial and anti-fungal medicine. They are effective in reducing toothache, inflammation .They are also excellent sources of antioxidants along with cacao and cinnamon
- Strawberries are antioxidant-rich, especially for eye health and maintaining healthy skin. It also helps in reducing the cholesterol and maintaining heart health. Strawberries have large concentrationflavonoids that are known to have antioxidant properties. They fight free radical production, and therefore, lower the risk from heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and dementia.
- Cranberries can help boost the immune system. They are known for treating urinary tract infection effectively and are helpful in kidney stones. The disease-fighting antioxidant in strawberries can even reduce the risk of heart disease
- Walnuts deliver a powerful dose of cancer-fighting antioxidants. They arehelpful in the treatment of type 2 diabetes and are beneficial to heart health.
- Pinto Beansare full of antioxidants and very high in fiber.They are very beneficialfor digestive health
- Small Red Beans or red kidney bean popularly known as rajma in India contains high amount of antioxidants. They are very beneficial to bones and teeth, and even lower the risk of heart attacks.
- Red wine is the only alcoholic drink thatcontains bioflavonoids, phenols, resveratrol, and tannins, which have antioxidant and anticlotting properties.
- Soy has been known to be good food for elderly people who are negative in nitrogen balance. Soy has strongant oxidation effects. It helps in lowering the bad cholesterol. It is helpful to elders in delaying the renal disease progression which is a chronic suffering of the elderly people.
- Whole grains are not only super sources of fiber; they’re also rich in polyphenols and antioxidants.whole-grain foods have more antioxidants than processed grains. Include breakfast cereals and popcorns in the diet.
- Herbs and spices likethyme, rosemary, parsley, sage, oregano, and spearmint make food taste better and are loaded with polyphenols. They contain anti-tumor properties that can reduce the risk of cancer. All spices fresh or dried are loaded with antioxidants but the dried ones are richer than the fresh ones.
- Turmerichelps to curb diseases like Alzheimer’s, cancer, and arthritis.
- Red chili peppers are helpful to lower cholesterol and boost fat-burning.
- Cumin, thyme, and rosemary may cut the formation of cancer-causing compounds found in meats cooked at high temperature.
Conclusion–The best way to get a healthy range of antioxidants is to eat fruits and vegetables thatrepresenting all colors of the rainbow. Fruits and vegetables rich in colors like blue, purple, red, orange, yellow, and green are often packed with the most nutrients and antioxidants. These include berries, spinach, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, watermelon, cherries, broccoli, and red cabbage. More antioxidants can be added to the diet by including certain grains, legumes, nuts, herbs and spices. Smoothies, coffee, green tea, chocolate desserts, red wine and cocoa are all sources for antioxidants. The easiest way to add foods rich in antioxidants is to include antioxidant foods in each meal, snacks, and drinks— starting from morning tea to breakfast, lunch, snack time, teatime and supper.