10 Antioxidant rich foods
Antioxidants are the compound that protects against the damage caused by the Reactive oxygen species (ROS). ROS, are free radicals that your body produces to defend itself against bacteria and viruses. When they become too many in number, they may start attacking and harming the cells and even put us at the risk of serious diseases like heart trouble and cancer. You may also encounter oxidants from the external environment from pollutants, smoke or alcohol. Antioxidants help the body by neutralizing and removing these oxidants from your bloodstream.
Dark chocolate and cocoa packs have the high content of Antioxidant flavonoids called flavanols, which include procyanidins, epicatechins, and catechins. Studies have shown that people with high blood levels of flavonoids have a lower risk of heart disease, lung cancer, prostate cancer, asthma, and type 2 diabetes. Flavanols also reduce LDL oxidation and boosted antioxidants levels and HDL concentrations in the blood, the study suggests.
With one sip of tea, you get two potent phytochemicals — anthocyanin and proanthocyanin. Both are antioxidants that help fight inflammation. Add to that a healthy dose of catechins, antioxidants that are thought to block cell damage that can lead to cancer.
Fish provides powerful omega-3 fatty acids. Evidence suggests that omega-3s, particularly those coming from fish, may help prevent inflammatory diseases, such as coronary heart disease. Although all fish have some omega-3s, the stars include sardines, salmon, oysters, mackerel, tuna steak, wild rainbow trout, shark steak, albacore tuna, and herring.
Kidney beans are considered to be a “whole food” due to their high content of starch, dietary fiber, minerals, vitamins, Antioxidant and phenolic acids, such as anthocyanins, flavonoids, flavonol glycosides, tannins and phenolic acids. These components have been correlated with the prevention and/or diminish of several types of diseases, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity.
This ancient grain is trending again and for good reason. Barley is known for its powerful Antioxidant properties that make you stronger from within. Also, it has been found that when grains like barley are soaked and sprouted the antioxidant levels increase. Moreover, they become more digestible and it is easier for the body to absorb their nutrients.
In the recent years, this humble vegetable has created a lot of noise because of its cancer-fighting Antioxidant. Out of all the cruciferous vegetables, broccoli is one of the best sources of antioxidants like carotenoids lutein, zeaxanthin and beta-carotene. The best way to have broccoli is to steam it. Remember that some antioxidants like Vitamin C are completely destroyed by heat while others like beta-carotene become more potent in cooking the vegetable.
Juicy tomatoes are packed with three types of antioxidants – Lycopene (that gives tomato its bright red color), Vitamin C and Vitamin A. Vitamin C are one of the most potent kinds of antioxidants that you can derive from fruits and vegetables. The lycopene in tomatoes is best absorbed when they are cooked.
Most nuts are super healthy and experts recommend that you must have at least a handful or 30 grams of nuts daily. Walnuts are cholesterol-free, low in sodium and loaded with antioxidants. They offer huge amounts of Antioxidant– polyphenols.
This tiny powerhouse is rich in beta-carotene, an Antioxidant that protects against lung cancer and helps maintain healthy skin, hair, nails, gums, glands, bones, and teeth. It’s also a good source of vitamin E, which may help prevent heart attacks, strokes, and lower the risk of death from bladder cancer.
A study in the Journal of Agricultural Food and Chemistry found that the longer corn was cooked, the higher the level of antioxidants like lutein, which combats blindness in older adults.