Antioxidants - How to
slow down Aging
We are a product
of our environment and must be realistic in knowing that the environment
is not pure and because of the basic instinct of greed, we are living in
a polluted world. The people, who live the longest, exist in the high
mountains where the air is not polluted, the water is full of healthy
minerals and the food is free of synthetic chemicals.
In the polluted
world, we must recognize that polluted air, water and food produce free
radicals and pathogenic germs that cause us to prematurely age with
diseases and pain. For those of us that live in the chemical world, we
can live 20 years or even longer, if we prevent free radicals and
pathogens from shortening our life. Anti-aging depends on fighting free
radicals and pathogens. Conventional medicine may let us live 20 years
longer, but with the expectation of suffering. Fortunately, the choice
chemicals that defuse free radicals and other biologically damaging
molecular fragments in the body. They consist of nutrients such as
Beta-Carotene, Coenzyme Q10, Selenium, Vitamin C and Vitamin E are well
known for their antioxidant properties.
found in a full-range of fruits and vegetables, as well as in some meat,
like fish. However, fruits and vegetables are the key source of
antioxidants. Although, our bodies produce its own antioxidants, the
level of product declines over time because of environmental factors and
through the aging process.
ANTIOXIDANT THEORY -- HOW THEY WORK:
Free Radicals As
part of the normal cell function, cells make toxic molecules called free
radicals. Free radicals are damaged molecules-molecules that are
missing electronics. Free radicals are regarded as the primary force of
destruction in nearly all-living things. Free radicals take electrons
from other non-damaged molecules. By doing so, the free molecules damage
As cell damage
continues, it contributes to certain diseases and aging. Free radicals
can cause cancer, diabetes, cataracts, cardiovascular disease and
THE BENEFITS OF ANTIOXIDANTS:
oxidation with antioxidants is a good way at slowing down the oxidation
process. When oxidation occurs in food, fatty acids undergo chemical
changes. Fatty acids are also found in the blood, which can undergo
similar chemical changes, as does food.
Resulting From Aging”, A study published by the Journal of Neuroscience
showed that rats fed antioxidant-rich strawberries and spinach had
better memories and slower decline of nerve cells functions than rats
fed a standard diet.
Most of us know
that we need to consume more fruits and vegetables than meats. Fruits
and vegetables play an important role in protecting against and possibly
reversing the cognitive declines seen from aging.
destruction is said to be a key factor to a decline in memory and motor
performance seen in aging. The brain is especially vulnerable because
it is relatively deficient in antioxidants to begin with.
WHICH ANTIOXIDANTS ARE BEST THEN?
Two general types
of antioxidants work together to protect the cells and tissues of our
bodies. One type protects the aqueous (watery) portion of the tissues
and the other the hydrophobic, or lipid (fatty) component. The aqueous
environment is protected by vitamin C, and at least two additional
antioxidants produced by tissues, glutathione and thioredoxin. Cell
membranes are protected by the lipid-soluble antioxidants, including
vitamin E, and the ubiquinols (CoQ10). Another antioxidant, alpha lipoic
acid, is unique in that it can enter and protect both lipid and water
When vitamins C
and E react with and neutralize a free radical, the oxidized or spent
vitamins are converted back to the reduced or recharged, active form.
Vitamin C can donate electrons to oxidized vitamin E and convert the E
back to its active state, leaving vitamin C oxidized. Vitamin C, in
turn, can be recharged after reacting with glutathione or the more
potent antioxidant, alpha lipoic acid.
The most versatile
antioxidant in the cell is alpha lipoic acid. It is one of the more
potent antioxidants, owing to its property of being the most easily
oxidized. Alpha lipoic acid is the foundation of an antioxidant network
involved in the conversion of the spent or oxidized forms of four
different cellular antioxidants back to their active protective forms.
The obvious questions, then, are how lipoic acid is regenerated and
whether this process ever ends.
The answer lies in
the unique property of lipoic acid, its solubility in both water and
lipid. Lipoic acid can be converted from its oxidized state to its
reduced state with the aid of a mitochondrial enzyme (the organelle
within the cell where energy is produced). Unlike vitamins C and E, the
cell has machinery specifically designed for the regeneration of reduced
lipoic acid. Therefore, lipoic acid can itself react with and neutralize
free radicals in addition to recycling vitamins C and E (as well as
CoQ10, glutathione and thioredoxin). This is critical, since each
antioxidant has a unique function. The conclusion, then, is that all of
these antioxidants are required for optimal cellular health
FOODS HIGH IN ANTIOXIDANTS:
Found in dark green, dark yellow and orange vegetables and fruits.
Selenium -- Found
in meats, fish, cereal, dairy products, Brazil and some other nuts.
Vitamin C - Found
in orange juice, kiwi, grapefruit, strawberries, watermelon, green
peppers, cauliflower and broccoli.
Vitamin E - Can be
found in mayonnaise, margarine, salad dressing, sunflower seeds,
almonds, cashews, crab, shrimp and fish.
RECOMMENDED DIETARY ALLOWANCE:
Make sure you get
the RDA for vitamin C, E and beta-carotene. If you rarely eat dark-green
or orange varieties of fruits and vegetables, take a supplement, which
supplies 100% of the RDA vitamins and minerals.
Studies show that
people, especially as they age, don't get the RDA for vitamin E. Good
food sources for vitamin E again are breakfast cereals that are
fortified with 100% of the RDA for vitamins and minerals, shellfish,
mustard or turnip greens, kale and collards.
Ito Nakamura is an internet health entrepreneur specializing in marketing
contact lenses, health supplements; exercise equipment & beauty products.
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