Fruit And Antioxidants
Fruit And Antioxidants
The terms fruit and antioxidants go hand in hand. This is because all fruits are a source of disease preventing antioxidants. As the name suggests, antioxidants fight oxidation which causes damage to cells in the body. The oxidation process in the body results in molecule hungry free radicals. These free radicals are in unmatched pairs and therefore travel through the body looking for molecules to make matched pairs. They usually steal these molecules from cells which make the cells weak or kill the cells. Antioxidants protect the body from cell damage by providing this molecule and thereby causing oxidation of the free radicals.
Not only do free radicals cause cell damage or death, they also contribute to the development of illnesses such as heart disease and cancer.
Fruits and antioxidants also play other roles in the body besides scavenge for free radicals. They also decompose harmful chemicals in the body such as chlorine and peroxide and inhibit the production of certain harmful enzymes.
Numerous studies have shown a definite link between fruit and antioxidants. Some of these studies have tried to rank fruits according to the potency of their antioxidants. These studies may differ in terms of the ranking but do agree that darker colored fruits generally have more antioxidant activity than their lighter colored counterparts.
The fruit and antioxidants quantity is measured by units referred to as ORACs (oxygen radical absorbance capacity).
Generally speaking, the fruits containing Vitamin C, Vitamin E, alpha and beta carotene, polyphenols which include gallic acid and ellagic acid, and flavonoids which include catechins, anthocyanins, flavonones, isoflavones and flavones have very high antioxidant activity. It is not uncommon to find many different antioxidants in the same fruit. This is because they play different roles and they work synergistically for best results.
To get the most out of fruit and antioxidants, it is best to include a large variety of fruit in your diet. This is because different fruits have different combinations of antioxidants.
Fruit and antioxidants have been linked in many studies to preventing certain diseases and easing symptoms such as inflammation. Antioxidants have been shown to reduce inflammation in arthritis and gout as well as reduce allergic reactions. The antioxidants have also been linked with decreasing the risk of getting cancers such as breast pancreas, stomach, esophagus, prostate and stomach.
Fruit and antioxidants also go hand in hand as the plant from which the fruit comes from makes use of the antioxidants in almost the same way the human body does. Plants use antioxidants to protect themselves from stress in their growing environment, harsh sunlight and other harsh growing conditions. The antioxidants also act as preservatives and slow the rotting of the fruits. Fruit and the antioxidants they provide are just part of the many fruit health benefits you can receive by adding fruit to your daily diet.