You might have heard people suggesting you should consume foods rich in antioxidants for better health. Have you thought – what exactly is the benefit of antioxidants? Well, Dr. James and I encounter that question often and wanted to clear your uncertainties!
IMPORTANCE OF ADDING ANTIOXIDANTS TO YOUR DIET
Antioxidants lower the damage to your cells produced by free radicals. Sometimes, if the body is unable to take out those free radicals, it might result in oxidative stress. Oxidative stress directly relates to countless inflammatory diseases as well as cardiac disorders, stroke, pulmonary diseases, and emphysema.
Oxidative stress may occur due to multiple reasons, including excessive exercise, inflammation, smoking, chemical exposure, ischemia, or certain foods such as trans-fats and processed foods. An intake of foods packed with antioxidants is known to reduce these risks.
Studies suggest that foods rich in antioxidants help minimize the risk of vision loss in older people. Another study indicates antioxidants to be radical scavengers as well as hydrogen donors. What does that really mean? Chemically speaking, the structures end up more stable. Stable is good!
FOOD SOURCES OF ANTIOXIDANTS
One of the best sources of antioxidants are none other than plant-based foods. Some of the best food sources of antioxidants to improve your health are:
Eggs (we have been enjoying fresh eggs from our Spice Chicks)
Fruits including berries and oranges
Vegetables, mostly bell peppers and green leafy vegetables
The best way to incorporate antioxidants in your daily nutrition is by eating fruits with your snacks. Drink green tea daily. Add colors to your plates, such as various fruits and vegetables. Unless you have a nut allergy like I do, eat nuts as a snack or include in your salads. You can also add seeds to your yogurt, eggs, smoothies, and salads. Get creative with your meals and make multiple recipes that are rich in antioxidants.
THE FINAL TAKEAWAY
It is essential to opt for natural plant-based sources of antioxidants rather than the man-made ones. Besides being antioxidants, fruits and vegetables are still found helpful in lowering the risk of chronic diseases.