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Antioxidants Supplements: Antioxidants and Free Radicals


Antioxidants are widely used in dietary supplements and have been researched and found for the prevention of diseases such as cancer, coronary heart disease and even altitude sickness. Although initial studies suggested that antioxidant supplements might promote health, later large clinical trials with a limited number of antioxidants detected no benefit and even suggested that excess supplementation with certain putative antioxidants may be harmful. Antioxidants also have many industrial uses, such as preservatives in food and cosmetics and to prevent the degradation of rubber and gasoline.

There are many great natural sources of antioxidants and they include fruits (particularly tomatoes and grapes), vegetables, tuna and oily fish (containing essential fatty acids) and even wine. Getting your antioxidants from a natural source is preferable to supplementing your diet as you will this way be more likely to absorb the antioxidants, and at the same time it will mean you can benefit from many other positive attributes in these foods – such as protein in fish or other vitamins and fiber in fruits and vegetables.

Free Radicals an Anti-Oxidants


Every single cell has a nucleus in its centre which contains our DNA. This DNA is the 'blueprint' that the body has for instructing our cells where to go and for ensuring that each cell functions correctly and accurately. When these cells split you are in theory left with two identical cells with identical DNA and that means that you could live on endlessly by recycling old cells. However this isn't precisely what happens, and instead you end up with imperfect copies that are a result of many different factors and which cause the cells to function not quite optimally and often to be visibly different from the way they were intended.

Free radicals are one of the reasons that these imperfections exist and also that cells die in the first place. Free radicals are reactive chemicals in the body which can damage the cells and are a result of oxidization of the very air we breathe in in order to keep us alive. These free radicals are lose in our bodies and will travel around colliding with our cell walls causing visible damage. For the skin cells this can become visibly obvious when enough damage has been done and result in the appearance of wrinkles and lines. As our mitosis slows down as we get older and eventually stops (due to the shortening of the telomeres at the end of DNA strands after each mitosis), this results in more visible lines and wrinkles in our faces as a result of free radicals causing the damage.

References:

1) Antioxidants Supplements




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