Foods High With Antioxidants
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Foods High With Antioxidants

Antioxidants can be extremely helpful against chronic oxidative stress-related diseases like cancer, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, atherosclerosis and heart failure. They will prevent these illnesses in healthy people that contain heightened levels of ROS (reactive oxygen species). Antioxidants can also eliminate free radicals and other reactive oxygen and nitrogen species, and these reactive species contribute to most chronic diseases. Important thing to know is that their case of health benefits is a two way street. This matter is anything but one-sided, and should be carefully approached. Common knowledge is that antioxidants are extremely helpful but few are aware of their “darker” side. If you exaggerate, you may do more harm than good to your body. You see, antioxidants hunt down ROS, which have a few important roles in our body. They are essential in detoxification processes and killing off bad bacteria, and thus protect us from possible cancerous and other life-threatening cells! Bottom line, plan your diet with caution, you don't want to be stuffing yourself with just this type of food. All in moderation is the way to go!

So without further ado, lets take a look at the terms that we should pay attention to:

  • Beta-carotene
  • Lycopene
  • Lutein
  • Selenium
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E

Above is a list of important antioxidants that you want your food to have.

Researches have shown that plant based food contains a lot more antioxidants compared to non-plant food. Therefore, fruits and vegetables are the way to go here! Let’s identify these foods that are potentially good sources of antioxidants.

Bare in mind, that there is not by definition direct relationship between the antioxidant content of a particular food consumed and the subsequent antioxidant activity in your body. That is because of variations in absorption and metabolism in individuals. That being said, lets take a look at the list of categories of different food (which was made by a group of norwegian scientists) and their levels of antioxidants, respectively. The numbers in the list are: 1) the amount of different samples taken, 2) average amount of antioxidants in mmol/100g per category.

1) Herbs and spices (425 - 25.02)

Category that is ranked the highest of all. This means that in average herbs and spices contain the most antioxidants. Garlic is the hallmark of this category with its incredible medicinal properties. Pepper, Oregano, Allspice, mint leaves and sage are few other herbs and spices high with antioxidants.

2) Berries and berry products (119 - 9.86)

Blackberries, blueberries, cranberries and raspberries are the best in this category.

3) Beverages (283 - 8.30)

Although this article was supposed to be about “food”, I thought it would be a waste not to mention a few drinks as well! Espresso, coffee, red wine, grape juice, pomegranate juice and green tea are the ones with the highest amount.

4) Chocolates and sweets (80 - 4.93)

Chocolates that have higher cocoa rate are considerably higher with antioxidants, hence the best ones are those with > 70% cocoa content.

5) Nuts and seeds (90 - 4.57)

Wallnut, sunflower seeds, pecans, chestnuts, buckwheat and peanuts.

6) fruit and fruit juices (278 - 1.25)

Apples, apricots, dates, mango, plums, pomegranate, prunes and strawberries

7) Breakfast cereals (90 - 1.09)

Pretty self explanatory category. Most of the products here have the antioxidant range from 0.5 to 2.25 mmol/100g.

8) Vegetables and vegetable products (303 - 0.80)

Black olives, broccoli, curly kale and artichokes.

9) Dairy products (86 - 0.14)

Most of the food here is pretty low in antioxidants. However if you add berries or chocolates you can vastly improve your antioxidant meal!

You can also find out more details about individual antioxidant-rich food that is extremely beneficial to your brain here.

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