Top 8 Benefits of Antioxidants That Will Surprise You

Top 8 Benefits of Antioxidants That Will Surprise You



Do you know, what are antioxidants? What about free radicals? How to prevent free radical damage? What are the benefits of antioxidants? Which are antioxidant-rich foods?

Benefits of Antioxidants
Antioxidants Benefits

Ok! Don’t be confused. We will help you to know everything about antioxidants, their health benefits, free radicals, and many more.

Our body is in a constant battle every day against viruses, bacteria, infections, diseases, and even against the formation of free radicals.

Free radicals are a natural part of the body’s metabolism. They are normally present in the body. But they produce toxicity and create problems when the balance of free radicals is lost.

The most important benefit of antioxidants is scavenging free radicals as well as preventing their harmful activities.

Chemically free radicals are molecular species, or a single molecule that contains one or more unpair electrons, and can exist independently.

The harmful free radicals in the human body are mainly oxygen derivatives*

On the other hand, free radicals are highly oxidative, attack good biomolecules, and damage them. In an imbalanced concentration, they are highly toxic.

The oxidative free radicals damage tissues, DNA, and brain cells, which is known as oxidative stress (or oxidative damage).

However, prevent oxidative damage, and scavenge toxic free radicals, our body uses antioxidants as a secret weapon.


*Oxygen-derived free radicals are two types: 1) Containing unpaired electrons, such as hydroxyl ion (OH-), superoxide ion (O2-), ester ion (ROO-), etc.

2) Reactive oxygen species (ROS), such as hypochlorous acid (HOCL), hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), singlet oxygen (1O2), etc.



What Are Antioxidants?


Antioxidants are free radical scavengers that combat the toxic effects and protect our bodies from oxidative stress.

They are also natural parts of the body, but when an unhealthy diet (rich in junk foods, cigarette smoking, alcohol abuse), and environmental pollutions produce excess free radicals, then the body needs more antioxidants from outer sources.

We can easily consume antioxidant foods as well as antioxidant supplements to protect our health from damage.

know more topic: Top 10 Antioxidant-rich Foods

Types of Antioxidants

The types of antioxidants and their functions are quite important.

Generally, they present in nature in the three forms, such as enzymes, vitamins, and phytochemicals.

Enzymatic antioxidants come from proteins and a mineral-rich diet. They break down free radicals, remove them, and fight against oxidative cell damage.

In the case of vitamin antioxidants, our bodies cannot produce vitamins. So, we have to depend on a healthy diet. Vitamins A, C, E, and folic acid act as antioxidants.

Plants use some phytochemicals to protect themselves from free radicals. Studies found that those phytochemicals act as natural antioxidant sources for humans.

We can get the benefits of antioxidants from flavonoids, polyphenols, carotenoids, etc. as plant sources.

β-carotene is a common and most potent phytochemical to protect against free radical damage.

The antioxidants example that comes from outside our body is vitamin A, C, E, carotene, lycopene, lutein, zeaxanthin, manganese, selenium, etc.


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Health Benefits Of Antioxidants


The antioxidant benefits are quite popular and well-researched.

From the heart to the brain, preventing cancer to boosting immunity, improving eye health to maintaining healthy skin, they provide numerous benefits.

1. Cancer Prevention

Cancer is the most common, and dangerous health issue in the 21st century.

According to scientific studies, antioxidants have been shown to prevent cancer development that has been associated with free radical damage.

Benefits of Antioxidants
Antioxidants Prevent Cancer

They prevent oxidative damage of DNA and protect us from gene mutation. Gene mutation is responsible for triggering various types of cancer.

On the other hand, the benefits of antioxidants are also present during the treatment of cancer.

The supplementation of antioxidants can be used in cancer treatment to enhance the ability to fight against oxidative stress, and inflammation.

Researches show that the natural antioxidant status of our body decline during cancer treatment. So, antioxidant foods may be needed during chemotherapy.


2. Protect The Heart

Another important benefit of antioxidants protects the heart by preventing vascular diseases.

The antioxidants, such as vitamin C, and selenium have powerful cardioprotective nature.

It has been found that adequate amounts of vitamin C intake can cut the risk of stroke by up to 50%.

Benefits of Antioxidants
Antioxidants & Healthy Heart

They also reduce inflammation in the heart muscle and maintain a healthy heart.

There are hundreds of studies showing that intake of a plant-based diet loaded with natural antioxidants can protect our hearts significantly.

So, keep in mind the antioxidant benefits, and incorporate fruits as well as veggies in your regular diet.

know more topic: How To Prevent Heart Attacks


3. Protect Our Brain

Protecting our brain from neurodegenerative diseases is a significant benefit of antioxidants.

Most brain diseases are linked to oxidative damage, which can be prevented, and improved with a higher intake of antioxidants.

Benefits of Antioxidants
Antioxidants Improve Brain Health

On the other hand, they have been found to improve memory and reduce the risk of dementia, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, etc.

Vitamin C, E, and the minerals selenium, and zinc have been shown to function as natural antidepressants and reduce mental stress.

They also work as a mediator in the central nervous system (CNS) and boost cognitive health.

know more topic: Top 10 Healthy Foods For Brain 

4. Enhance Immunity

In a lower amount, free radicals are the natural parts of our body’s metabolism.

But, when the amount crosses the normal level, they harm our health in different ways.

Free radicals damage the defense system of the body, resulting in decreased immunity.

Antioxidants neutralize these harmful radicals and boost our immune system.

know more topic: How To Boost Immunity During COVID-19


5. Improve Eye Health

Antioxidants play a significant role in improving eye health as well as maintaining eyesight.

The antioxidant-rich foods may prevent the progression, and even reverse age-related macular degeneration, and other vision problems.

Benefits of Antioxidants
Antioxidants Protect Eyes

On the other hand, phytochemicals lutein, and zeaxanthin also prevent cataracts, and macular degeneration both.

Additionally, β-carotene nourishes and protects the retina, and prevents night blindness.


6. Protect Our Skin

UV exposure throughout the day generates free radicals in the body, which are responsible for inflammation, and damage in the skin tissues. Here is the importance of antioxidants.

They produce anti-inflammatory effects by increasing blood circulation, and oxygenation in the skin cells.

By reducing inflammation, antioxidants also promote more skin tone and help to keep acne as well as wrinkles away.

Additionally, they encourage the growth of new cells and fix the damages that arise from UV exposure.

7. Delay Aging

Do you want to stay young for a long time? Then add significant amounts of antioxidants to your regular diet.

The benefits of antioxidants on the skin are quite popular in the beauty world.

They neutralize the harmful activities of free radicals, limiting the internal deterioration of the skin, and preventing the signs of aging.

Antioxidants also minimize wrinkles and preserve the beautiful texture of our faces.

Additionally, they protect our skin from harmful UV rays and reduce susceptibility to sun damage.


8. Strengthen Hair

Dietary antioxidants also improve hair health and may treat nutritional deficiencies.

They protect delicate hair follicles and prevent hair fall caused by oxidative stress.


Benefits of Antioxidants
Antioxidants Strengthen Hair


Side Effects Of Antioxidants


Are you surprised to listen about the side effects of antioxidants? No need to be surprised.

Dietary intake of antioxidants is important for good health, but excess is not better.

Besides, the benefits of antioxidants, some side effects are also present. But the side effects exert only in supplementation.

Excess amounts of isolated antioxidants consumption may produce toxic effects, instead of preventing damage.

According to some studies, a higher dose of supplements increases the risk of death. Because excessive intake of antioxidant supplements acts as a pro-oxidant and causes higher cell damage.

On the other hand, supplementation may lose the host selectivity, and protect cancerous cells also.

Other general side effects are nausea, vomiting, headache, etc.

So, eating plant-based antioxidant-rich foods is a much better, and safe idea.

However, low-dose supplements of antioxidants, such as multivitamins are beneficial in some cases of nutritional deficiencies.


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Now, The Conclusion


So, the benefits as well as side effects of antioxidants we learned in detail.

Antioxidants are the secret weapon of our body to prevent harmful free radicals and maintain proper health.

They prevent cancer, protect the heart, and eyes, nourish skin cells as well as delay aging.

The isolated antioxidants are available in supplement form, but try to stick with natural food sources.

A healthy diet full of fruits, colored veggies, and nuts is the most effective as well as safe way to consume antioxidants.

Some common antioxidant-rich fruits and veggies are berries, kale, spinach, red cabbage, broccoli, artichoke, beans, beetroots, carrots, pomegranate, avocado, dark chocolate, etc.

Benefits of Antioxidants
Antioxidant-rich foods

Due to some side effects, it is better to avoid supplements and stay focused on natural food sources.

If anyone wants to take supplements, then a physician should be consulted. Self-medication is strictly prohibited.

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