In this section of Seattle Organic Restaurants I want to talk about antioxidants. Free radicals are groups of atoms that can cause cell damage and weaken the immune system causing health problems such as heart issues and cancer.
Natural compounds of antioxidants help to protect the body against free radicals. Free radicals can be formed by being exposed to sun, toxic chemicals such as chemicals in cigarettes, industrial or chemical wastes and polluted air. There are different types of free radicals and the most common one is oxygen-derived free radical such as hydrogen peroxide, hypochlorite radicals, lipid peroxide, superoxide radicals and hydroxyl radicals. Vitamin A, C and E, beta-carotene, garlic, flavonoids, selenium and certain herbs like green tea are antioxidant.
Antioxidants and enzymes both neutralize the free radicals in the body. Methionine reductase, glutathione peroxidase, catalase and superoxide dismutase (SOD) are the four essential enzymes that can neutralize the free radicals in the body. Many vegetables, fruits, nuts and grains are a high source of antioxidants, but it might not be easy to get full nutrient from these foods to fight with free radicals in the body. Therefore taking vitamins and mineral supplements high in antioxidants can prevent health problems like cancer, heart problems and memory loss. It’s better to take small dosage of antioxidant throughout the day rather than taking large amount of antioxidants all at once.