What are Antioxidants?
Antioxidants are molecules which can safely interact with free radicals and terminate the chain reaction before vital molecules are damaged. Although there are several enzyme systems within the body that scavenge free radicals, the principle micronutrient antioxidants are vitamin E, beta-carotene, and vitamin C. Selenium, a trace metal that is required for proper function of one of the body’s antioxidant enzyme systems, is sometimes included in this category.
The body cannot manufacture these micronutrients so they must be supplied in the diet.
Why Eat Fish Weekly?
Best choices are oily fish rich in healthy omega-3 fatty acids, such as herring, sardines, salmon, lake trout, mackerel and albacore tuna. But forgot fish oil capsules unless you have been diagnosed with heart disease and can’t eat at least two meals of fish per week. People with high triglyceride levels who are under the care of a physician may benefit from omega-3 fatty acids in capsules. The U.S. guidelines also recommend two servings of fish per week, but it doesn’t address fish oil capsules in the same detail as AHA.
Can Antioxidants Prevent Cancer?
That is a good question. Considerable laboratory evidence from chemical, cell culture, and animal studies indicates that antioxidants may slow or possibly prevent the development of cancer. However, information from recent clinical trials is less clear. In recent years, large-scale, randomized clinical trials reached inconsistent conclusions. Various new researches show that a serving of almonds, for instance, contains the same amount of antioxidants called flavonoids as a serving of broccoli. And a one ounce serving of almonds provides as much of these antioxidants as found in a cup of brewed black or green tea, in addition to being an excellent source of vitamin E!
Furthermore, the researchers noted that the main antioxidant compounds found in almonds, catechin, epicatechin and kaempferol, are also the ones that provide the highest degree of protection against cell death from oxidants, a mechanism that appears to play an important role in reducing the risk of chronic diseases.
Antioxidants are abundant in fruits and vegetables, as well as in other foods including nuts, grains and some meats, poultry and fish. We urge you to find out more about Antioxidants today!