WHAT ARE “ANTIOXIDANTS”? AND WHAT ARE “FREE RADICALS”?
Everyone has heard of the term antioxidants. But what exactly are antioxidants and what are their benefits? We want to clarify these questions today.
In order to better understand the importance of antioxidants, free radicals must also be briefly described.
“Free radicals” is a general term for molecules that are highly reactive. This means that they can attach to normal cells in the body, such as DNA, and also connect, damaging them. Moreover, they are most often involved in cell damage leading to the development of cancer. Free radicals are either caused by external sources, such as smoking or toxins, or they arise during normal metabolism in the body.
An antioxidant is therefore now a molecule that inhibits the oxidation of other molecules. Oxidation is a chemical reaction that can produce free radicals. This in turn can lead to chain reactions that can damage cells. Antioxidants stop these chain reactions. The term “antioxidant” is used primarily for two different groups of substances. First, industrial chemicals that are added to products to prevent oxidation. And secondly, natural chemicals that are found in foods and body tissues that have positive health effects.
WHAT ADVANTAGES HAVE ANTIOXIDANTENTS?
The benefits of antioxidants are very important for good health. Because if free radicals remain unchallenged, they can cause a wide range of diseases and chronic diseases.
PROTECTION FROM FREE RADICALS
The human body is constantly producing free radicals and, as already mentioned, antioxidants protect against these harmful effects. In general, there are far more free radicals than the naturally occurring antioxidants. To maintain a balance here, a continuous supply of external sources of antioxidants is necessary. Only then can you get the maximum benefits of antioxidants. In summary, antioxidants help neutralize the body and remove the free radicals from the bloodstream.
DIFFERENT SPECIES ARE ADVANCED FOR DIFFERENT BODY PARTS
In nature, there are a wide range of antioxidants and not all are good for the same thing. For example, beta-carotene (and other carotenoids) is very beneficial to eye health. Lycopene is beneficial for maintaining prostate health. Flavonoids are particularly beneficial for heart health. And proanthocyanidins are good for the urinary tract.
ADVANTAGES FOR THE SKIN
When the skin is exposed to high levels of sunshine and high levels of ultraviolet light, photooxidative damage occurs through the formation of various types of reactive oxygen. These forms of reactive oxygen damage cellular lipids, proteins and DNA. These are considered the main culprits in sunburn, premature aging skin, photodermatoses and skin cancer.
It has been proven that astaxanthin, followed by beta-carotene combined with vitamin E is one of the most potent antioxidant combinations for protecting the skin from reactive oxygen.
STRENGTHENING THE IMMUNE SYSTEM
Reactive oxygen can attack the immune system because it has the ability to catalyze the production of free radicals. Both astaxanthin and spirulina have both been shown to improve the immune system and to protect cell membranes and cellular DNA from mutation. Astaxanthin is the most powerful opponent of reactive oxygen. It is up to ten times more potent than other carotenoids (including beta-carotene) and up to 500 times stronger than alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E), while spirulina has a variety of antioxidants and other substances that are beneficial in promoting immunity ,
ADDITIONAL ADVANTAGES OF ANTIOXIDANTS
Increasing antioxidant intake is important for optimal health, especially in today’s polluted world. Since the body just can not compete with antioxidant production, a good amount of these vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and enzymes must come from the daily diet or supplements. Increasing the antioxidant intake, apart from the benefits mentioned above, can help to protect the body against heart problems, memory problems and mood swings.