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Thursday, April 22, 2021

Include Top 10 Antioxidant-Rich Foods in Your Daily Diet

Include Top 10 Antioxidant-Rich Foods in Your Daily Diet

 

 

Introduction

 

Do you know, what are antioxidants? Which are antioxidant-rich foods? What are the benefits of antioxidants?

 

Top Antioxidant-rich Foods
antioxidant-rich foods

Ok! Don’t be confused.

Antioxidants are one of the most important nutrients with several health benefits.

They scavenge harmful free radicals, prevent oxidative damages, and reduce the risk of several metabolic disorders.

Antioxidants act as a secret weapon in our body and protect us from various diseases.

They protect us from heart diseases, prevent cancer, delay aging, improve brain functions, protect our eyes and skin from UV exposure.

We can get these nutrients through antioxidant-rich foods naturally, or through supplements. But natural foods are more preferable.

We can also add natural, and supplements both into our regular diet to get the massive health benefits or reserve the food from oxidation and deterioration.

These foods do not allow free radicals to spread within our system, decrease or stop oxidation, and protect our health.

Here, we are discussing the natural antioxidants foods which must be included in your daily diet.

Let’s increase wellness.

 

 

Top 10 Natural Antioxidant-rich Foods

 

Various types of antioxidants and their functions are present, such as enzymatic antioxidants, vitamins, and phytochemical antioxidants.

Antioxidants supplements can exert some adverse effects. A Higher concentration of supplements act as a pro-oxidant, increases oxidation, and promotes higher damages.

Antioxidants Foods
antioxidants foods


Here is the importance of natural antioxidant-rich foods. They have no side effects.

Excess supplementation loses selectivity between normal cells and cancer cells and can protect cancerous cells.

On the other hand, synthetic and isolated antioxidants may cause nausea, vomiting as well as headache.

So, the foods that contain natural antioxidants quite safe and recommended by health experts. These foods are:

 

i. Blueberries

The most common antioxidant-rich foods are blueberries. Belonging to the Rosaceae family, these fruits regarded as the king of natural antioxidants.

They contain the highest amounts of antioxidants among all fruits and veggies. So, add them to your daily diet, take one more step towards wellness.

Low calories and high antioxidant-rich blueberries are the most nutrient-dense fruits. They are rich in dietary fiber, vitamin C, K, manganese, water, etc.

They are also rich in carbs, protein, low fats, and some phytochemical antioxidants, such as anthocyanins, quercetin, and myricetin.

Most of the benefits of blueberry depend on anthocyanins.

Top Antioxidant-rich Foods
benefits of blueberry


The antioxidants present in blueberries reduce DNA damage and gene mutation. So, this fruit prevents cancer as well as delays aging.

They also prevent the oxidation of HDL (good cholesterol) to convert LDL (bad cholesterol), maintain healthy cholesterol levels, and prevent atherosclerosis, heart attack, and stroke.

Blueberries may lower blood pressure and prevent cardiovascular diseases.

The anthocyanins help to reduce blood sugar levels and exert anti-diabetic effects.

Blueberries help to maintain cognitive functions and improve memory.

Additionally, anti-adhesive compounds of blueberry prevent E. coli bacteria from binding to the bladder wall and help to fight urinary tract infections (UTIs).

 

ii. Strawberries

Another important antioxidant-rich food in the berry family is strawberry.

Strawberries are the most popular fruit among all of the barries. The strength of their numerous antioxidants remains underappreciated.

Belonging to the Rosaceae family, strawberries are a significant source of vitamin C.

Just a single cup carries 149% of the daily intake of vitamin C and builds a strong immune system.

benefits of strawberries
strawberry benefits


They also contain 91% water, carbs, low fat, fiber, potassium, manganese, and folate.

They also provide iron, copper, vitamin B6, E, K, phosphorus in a small amount. All these nutrients are responsible for the benefits of strawberries.

The anthocyanins found in strawberries help lower LDL (bad cholesterol) levels, promote HDL (good cholesterol) and prevent major cardiac issues.

Strawberries slow down glucose digestion, reduce glucose spikes in the blood, and lower blood sugar levels.

Studies show that strawberries help to prevent oxidative stress, DNA damage and reduce the risk of cancer. They inhibit the formation of tumor cells in animals with mouth cancer.

The fiber content of this fruit also prevents constipation and maintains regular bowel movement in the gut.

This fruit acts as an anti-inflammatory agent and may help to prevent arthritis.

 

iii. Raspberries

When we discuss natural antioxidant foods, we cannot complete the list without raspberry.

Belonging to the Rosaceae family, raspberries are a vital source of antioxidants. Just a half-cup of raspberry contains 27% of daily Vitamin C intake.

benefits of raspberry
raspberry benefits


On the other hand, low calorie, and high fiber-rich raspberries also provide vitamin K, E, B complex, manganese, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and protein.

Vitamin C and other nutrients of this fruit boost our immune system while fighting off various diseases.

Vitamin C can even slow down the aging process, your skin will not wrinkle, acne as quickly.

Along with Vitamin C, raspberries also carry some powerful flavonoids, which are anthocyanins, tannins, etc.

Anthocyanins help lower oxidative stress, and inflammation in the body, eventually lowering the risk of heart diseases.

High fiber and phytonutrient tannin-rich raspberries lower sugar absorption in the body and decrease blood sugar levels.

As a terrific source of antioxidants, raspberries prevent the growth of cancer cells.

An in-vitro study from 2010 focused on a test tube carrying cancerous cells, 90% of the stomach, breast, and colon cancer cells were killed off by the antioxidants from raspberries.

According to some health experts, this fruit may also aid weight loss by filling the satiety.

So, keep in mind the health benefits, and put this antioxidant-rich food in your regular diet.

 

iv. Purple Cabbage

After berries, the most vital antioxidant-rich food is purple cabbage. Purple cabbage contains more than four times antioxidants as compared to normal cabbage.

Almost 85% of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin C is found in a single cup of purple cabbage.

Not only vitamin C but purple cabbage also rich in lots of vitamins, such as vitamin A, B6, K, thiamine, riboflavin, etc.

It contains important phytochemicals, such as anthocyanins, carotenoids, sulforaphane, etc.

benefits of purple cabbage
purple cabbage benefits


Additionally, this miracle veggie provides potassium, and small amounts of magnesium, iron, calcium, copper, dietary zinc, etc.

Anthocyanins of purple cabbage boost the conditions of cardiac health. This veggie may also reduce the chances of heart attack by up to 11-32%.

This higher anthocyanin-containing veggie also lowers blood pressure.

One of the important health benefits of purple cabbage is playing a potential role in the prevention of certain types of cancer.

On the other hand, this veggie improves our gut health by acting as a prebiotic food as well as prevents inflammation in the gut.

Due to the presence of calcium, manganese, zinc, vitamin K, purple cabbage may strengthen bones.

Antioxidants-rich purple cabbage exerts an anti-aging effect. So, keep this veggie in your daily diet, and enjoy its health benefits.

 

v. Spinach

When you hear the word “spinach”, you probably get flashbacks of your mom shouting at you to finish it off your dinner plate.

But if you know the health benefits of this antioxidant-rich food, then you will realize that she did it right. Spinach is a treasure of antioxidants!

Spinach contains vitamin C, K, A, folic acid, iron, calcium, insoluble fiber, and various antioxidants, such as lutein, zeaxanthin, quercetin, etc.

In the health world, spinach benefits are very popular and well researched.

health benefits of spinach
spinach benefits


This dark green vegetable fights against free radicals and prevents oxidative damage.

The antioxidant zeaxanthin repairs eyesight from free radical damages, and UV exposure.

They work to defend the eyes from cataracts, macular degeneration, and stopping you from going blind.

Eating spinach regularly can also reduce the risk of cancer, specifically breast and prostate.

In a study from 2010, consumption of spinach lowers the growth of tumor cells.

The nitrate content of spinach helps to maintain blood pressure levels and decreases the risk of various heart diseases.

 

vi. Kale

Among the various antioxidant-rich foods, one of the most nutrient-dense is kale.

Red Russian kale has 2 times more amount of nutrients than the normal green type.

A single cup of kale carries 134%of daily required Vitamin-C. It has so much antioxidant property that you’ve never even heard of.

Kale contains antioxidants quercetin, and kaempferol, which are extremely potent.

benefits of kale
kale health benefits


On the other hand, this leafy vegetable rich in vitamin A, K, C, B6, magnesium, calcium, copper, potassium, and more. It is a vital source of vitamin C.

The health benefits of kale are well documented.

Leafy kale lowers cholesterol levels and reduces the risk of heart diseases. The potassium content of kale lowers blood pressure also.

The antioxidants present in kale, reduce inflammation, and the risk of certain types of cancer.

The high amounts of the β-carotene present in kale converts into vitamin A and exerts various benefits related to this vitamin activity.

On the other hand, antioxidants lutein, and zeaxanthin protect our eyes from environmental exposure, prevent cataracts as well as macular degeneration.   

 

vii. Artichoke

We are going to know another not-so-fun food. Artichoke is not familiar as berries, or cabbage to us, but it is another important antioxidant-rich food.

It maybe funny in look, but these green veggies actually play a vital role in our better health.

Artichokes were used in ancient times as a cure for jaundice. Its liquid extract has also been documented to assist cell regeneration in the liver.

This veggie contains various antioxidants such as quercetin, gallic acid, rutin, etc. which are responsible for anticancer effects.

benefits of artichoke
artichoke benefits


It is also containing dietary fiber, vitamin C, K, B6, potassium, calcium, magnesium, dietary zinc, iron, folate, etc.

The extract also has a positive effect on maintaining cholesterol levels. It reduces LDL (bad cholesterol) and may boost HDL (good cholesterol).

This vegetable extract also lowers blood pressure. According to a study, daily consumption of artichoke extract for 12 weeks, reduces diastolic BP 2.75 mmHg, and systolic BP 2.85 mmHg.

It acts as a prebiotic food, maintains healthy gut microbiota and improves digestion. It may ease irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

The antioxidants of artichoke have been shown to reduce inflammation, lower the risk of diabetes.

 

viii. Walnut

When we discussing antioxidant-rich foods, must be mentioned walnuts.

Walnuts have the highest amounts of antioxidants than other common nuts. These are ellagic acid, catechin, γ-tocopherol (an isomer of vitamin E), etc.

Besides the antioxidants, walnuts also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, dietary fiber, melatonin, and polyphenols.

Antioxidants of walnuts essentially go to war against the free radicals in the body and may prevent cancer.

Ellagic acid reduces the risk of certain types of cancer, such as prostate, and breast cancer.

The benefits of walnuts are quite popular. It reduces oxidative damage and acts as an anti-inflammatory food.

benefits of walnuts
walnut benefits


This dry fruit can control some inflammatory diseases, such as heart diseases, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, etc.

The omega-3 fatty acids, α-linolenic acid (ALA), γ-tocopherol (an isomer of vitamin E), and other antioxidants help to enhance cognitive behavior, improve memory, and reduce mental stress.

On the other hand, walnut contains catechin and melatonin that help to maintain a healthy sleep cycle.

Due to the presence of fiber, walnuts act as a prebiotic food, which supports gut microbiota, and maintains a healthy digestive system.

Vitamin E fights against free radicals and prevents cell damage in the skin. They delay aging.

However, walnuts are calorie-dense food, but according to health experts, this nut helps to control our hunger and plays a vital role in weight management.

If you keep walnuts in the diet, then eat them raw and uncooked.

 

ix. Dark Chocolate

If you are bored know about fruits and veggies, let’s talk about healthy desserts. Another most popular antioxidant-rich food is dark chocolate.

While some prefer milk chocolate, dark chocolate is healthier than milk chocolates. Dark chocolate has greater antioxidants value than some fruits.

Dark chocolate rich in antioxidant cocoa, other flavanols with fiber, potassium, magnesium, zinc, copper, manganese, phosphorus, etc.

benefits of dark chocolate
dark chocolate benefits


The flavanols stimulate the endothelial lining of arteries to produce NOs (Nitric Oxides), improve blood flow as well as control blood pressure.

Antioxidants in dark chocolate increase good cholesterol (HDL) and prevent the oxidation of bad cholesterol (LDL) by free radicals.

So, this antioxidant-rich food lowers the risk of cardiovascular diseases. 

Dark chocolates promote dopamine secretion in the brain that enhances our mode and relives from mental stress. Cocoa also improves cognitive functions, even in elderly people.

The bioactive compounds of dark chocolate are great for skin health. It protects against UV exposure and sun damage.

So, the next time you have the choice between milk chocolate and dark, hopefully, this list will serve as a good enough reference.

 

x. Red Wine

Now the time for a beverage. Another important antioxidant-rich food is red wine. Don’t be shocked to hear the name of Red wine in this list, it is a significant source of antioxidants.

If you want to access the health benefits of this alcoholic beverage, do not consume gallons of it.

In serving sizes of 100-120 ml/day and 2-3 days in a week, red wine exerts various health benefits. It is made from whole grapes, and the alcohol content is 12-15%.

It contains several antioxidants, such as resveratrol, anthocyanins, catechins, etc.

Anthocyanins reduce oxidative damages and cardio-friendly, antidiabetic, anticancer in nature.

health benefits of red wine
red wine benefits


Resveratrol also exerts heart-protecting effects and may control blood pressure.

So, this alcoholic beverage lowers the risk of heart attack, stroke, and early death.

Regular or dealcoholized red wine consumption for 4 weeks may reduce insulin resistance and maintain blood sugar.

This antioxidant-rich food plays a vital role in cognitive health. It reduces the risk of dementia as well as Alzheimer’s disease.

On the other hand, red wine has anti-depressant and sleep-inducing properties.

But keep in mind, excess red wine consumption can be harmful*, it can cause addiction, liver cirrhosis, weight gain, increased heart diseases, and early death.

 

*Don’t be alcoholic. Alcohol causes death.

 

 

Now, The Conclusion

These are the top 10 antioxidant-rich foods, some of them are fruits, some are veggies, dessert, and beverages.

In our busy daily life, an unhealthy diet with environmental pollutions generates Harmful free radicals in the body.

These free radicals promote oxidative damages and cause various diseases.

Antioxidants are the secret weapon of our body against free radicals and protect our health.

So, adequate amounts of antioxidants must present in our daily diet.

Besides, the consumption of antioxidants foods, it is also important to avoid fast foods, sugary, and fizzy drinks, smoking cigarettes, and consuming alcohol.

Always stick with green veggies, fruits, and a healthy lifestyle.

 

Thank You.

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