The Anti Aging Benefits of Antioxidants

http://www.bellaonline.com/articles/art48532.asp

Antioxidants are anti aging. This means staying younger longer with better health.

The benefits of antioxidants from food, or a good quality natural antioxidant supplement, give you the anti aging protection against degenerative diseases and help slow down the aging process of your skin, cells, tissues and organs.

Benefits of Antioxidants

Antioxidants are the naturally occurring nutrients found in certain fruits and vegetables. They’ve been proven to protect human cells from oxidative damage and provide:

• Stronger immune resistance to flues, viruses and infections
• Greatly reduced incidence of all cancers
• Prevention of glaucoma and macular degeneration
• Reduced risk of cholesterol-oxidation and heart disease
• Anti-aging of cells and overall body

The main antioxidants found in food include vitamins A, C and E, the minerals selenium and zinc and all of the phytonutrient carotenoids.

How Antioxidants Work

Although breathing oxygen is essential to life, oxygen can also be your worst enemy. It starts a process in your body called oxidation, which is the formation of free radicals.

The oxidation of metal is a good example. Iron gets old and rusty, aluminum is bleached an ugly white and copper turns an “aged” green. Something similar happens when your body is exposed to air, light and poor nutrition.

Free radical oxidation damage is the primary cause of aging (rust and corrosion). It’s as harmful and destructive to your body and brain as corrosion is to your car.

Just think of antioxidants as human “Rust-Oleum.”

Phytonutrients in Food

Antioxidants keep free radicals from ravaging your body and stealing the life from your cells. The carotenoid phytonutrients actually sacrifice themselves for your well being.

The more phytonutrients in your bloodstream, the healthier you’ll be.

Since they’re so important to health, the Human Nutrition Research Center at Tufts University measured the total phytonutrient protection power of various foods. Colorful carotenoid rich vegetables and fruit came out at the top of the list.

The highest-ranking vegetables are broccoli, spinach, greens, Brussels sprouts, beets, red peppers, carrots and tomatoes. And the best ranking fruits are berries, oranges, pink grapefruit, apricots, plums, peaches, red grapes and papaya.

Here’s the Problem

Hardly anyone gets enough fruits and vegetables.

The most “popular” are bananas, iceberg lettuce and French-fried potatoes. But, since they contain very few carotenoids, none of these are on Tufts phytonutrient list.

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