From labels on supplements to commercials for anti-aging eye creams, ‘antioxidants’ is a phrase we hear all the time…
Being the health-conscious person you are, you probably know that antioxidants are incredibly important for fending off aging and helping to protect us from serious conditions and diseases.
But what exactly is an antioxidant?
Antioxidants are substances that can prevent or slow down cell damage caused by free radicals.
Free radicals are unstable, waste molecules produced by our cells in reaction to environmental factors such as UV exposure, pollution, and cigarette smoke. If the body did not deal with these free radicals, then they can cause oxidative stress to our cells.
Just like how an apple turns brown when exposed to the air, oxidative stress can damage our cells and our overall health. I have linked oxidative stress to premature aging, heart disease, stroke, cancer, Parkinson’s disease, and more.
Antioxidants are sometimes known as ‘free-radical scavengers’ as they’re believed to neutralize free radicals and put a stop to their destructive ways.
Antioxidants, GOOD. Free radicals, BAD. But what’s the best way to get more antioxidants?
Although our bodies produce several powerful antioxidants, they’re not enough – the other antioxidants have to come from the food and drink we consume. Foods with the most antioxidants are often called ‘superfoods’.
So, to make sure you’re getting enough antioxidants, make sure you fill your plates with these…
The 3 best natural sources of antioxidants:
Not a vegetable that you see on most American plates, but they should be. Artichokes are one of the best natural sources of antioxidants, as well as fiber and minerals.
Artichokes are particularly rich in chlorogenic acid (CGA). An antioxidant that’s believed to reduce the risk of some cancers, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.
Sweet, delicious, and packed with antioxidants, blueberries deserve a place on every breakfast table.
Studies have shown that the antioxidants in blueberries may delay the age-induced decline in brain function as well as lowering LDL cholesterol levels and blood pressure.
The cheap and cheerful bean is a powerhouse of nutrition with high levels of fiber, vitamins and minerals.
All beans are rich in antioxidants but small red beans were found to contain the highest levels of all the foods tested by the USDA.
Is CBD an antioxidant?
Like almost all plants, hemp is a rich source of antioxidants and therefore it’s not surprising that there’s a lot of interest in the antioxidant potential of CBD and other cannabinoids.
Although early studies into CBD’s antioxidant properties look very promising, more is needed before we can know the compound’s true health potential.