How to get more antioxidants in your diet
Anyone leading a busy and stressful life may feel the added pressure of having another thing they need to worry about. More and more studies have shown the importance of antioxidants in our diet in recent years. But knowing that you ought to do something and doing it are two very different things.
So, what are antioxidants? Antioxidants are substances that can help protect cells from damage by free radicals. Free radicals trigger a process called oxidative stress, which causes damage to our cells. To understand how this works, we have to return to high school and revisit what we learned in chemistry.
Atoms are surrounded by electrons that orbit the atom in layers or shells. Each shell needs a certain amount of electrons, and when it has the right amount, it's stable. When an atom misses an electron, it is unstable and must correct itself. It searches the body for other electrons it can pair with, causing damage to cells, proteins and DNA along the way.
When oxygen breaks down in the body, it splits into single atoms with unpaired electrons. This is known as oxidative stress. Other substances that generate free radicals include fried foods, alcohol, tobacco smoke, pesticides and pollutants.
The human body generates antioxidants, but we can also get them from our diet. Antioxidants work by donating an electron to a free-radical, making it stable and harmless. Vitamins C and E are types of antioxidants that are essential for health. Berries, green tea, coffee and dark chocolate are also good antioxidants.
Why are antioxidants important?
Antioxidants are essential because when too many free radicals accumulate in our bodies, they can lead to significant health problems, including cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer's disease, to name a few. It also accelerates the ageing process.
There are three primary antioxidants; vitamin C, vitamin E and flavonoids. There are water-soluble and fat-soluble antioxidants. The water-soluble ones perform their actions in the fluids inside and outside of cells, while the fat-soluble ones work in cell membranes.
How to include more antioxidants in your diet
By incorporating more antioxidants into your diet in various ways, you can give yourself the best chance to live a long and healthy life. Alongside adding more antioxidants to your diet, you should also take steps to eliminate any foods that generate free radicals. Follow these tips to add more antioxidants to your diet with hardly any effort.
- Aim for a variety of colours when choosing foods. Dark green vegetables such as spinach or kale top the list, but don't forget about brightly coloured fruits like blueberries.
- Snack on healthy foods like goji berries, dark chocolate, sunflower seeds or nuts.
- Tea and coffee are both rich in antioxidants, but you can increase the variety by switching things up. Try introducing green tea to your daily routine for a bit of variety.
- Introduce more legumes into your diet. These include peas, beans and lentils.
- Use vegetable oil or olive oil for cooking.
- Eat more plant-based foods. By filling your plate with fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, tofu and legumes, you’ll enjoy a wide variety of antioxidant sources.
- Introduce a daily supplement.
Why use an antioxidant supplement?
Modern life is busy and stressful enough without worrying about getting the proper nutrients in your diet. Adding a supplement to your daily routine will reassure you that you’re getting all of the nutrients you need.
By choosing high-quality supplements, you’ll also guarantee that the supplements you take offer high levels of bioavailability. Without this critical distinction, the supplements will simply pass through your body and not provide any antioxidant benefits.
Longvida optimised curcumin is a premium quality curcumin extract that is antioxidant and antiinflammatory. Nutra D’Or Radiate capsules contain 200mg Longvida optimised curcumin alongside beneficial vitamins including vitamin D3 and vitamin C.
This supplement is uniquely formulated to help support health and wellness while also delivering skin and hair-friendly compounds to help support natural beauty.