The 40 most antioxidant-rich foods and their benefits

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These foods will provide you with plenty of antioxidants, as well as being nutritious and tasty! Here are the 40 foods you need to choose to fill up on antioxidants. Also discover all the benefits and health benefits of antioxidants according to the latest scientific research.

The 40 richest foods with antioxidants and their health benefits

  • Sulfur compounds of alliaceae : leek, onion, garlic
  • Anthocyanins : eggplant, grapes, berries
  • Beta carotene : pumpkin, mango, apricot, carrot, spinach, parsley
  • Catechins : red wine, tea
  • Copper : seafood, lean meat, nuts (nuts, hazelnut, etc.), legumes
  • Cryptoxanthines : red pepper, pumpkin, mango
  • Flavonoids : tea, green tea, red wine, citrus, onion, apple
  • Indoles : crucifers, including broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower
  • Lignans : sesame seeds, bran , whole grains, vegetables
  • Lutein : corn, green leafy vegetables (spinach, arugula, watercress, etc.)
  • Lycopene : tomato , pink grapefruit, watermelon
  • Manganese : seafood, lean meat, milk, nuts
  • Polyphenols : thyme, oregano
  • Selenium : seafood, offal, lean meat, whole grains
  • Vitamin C : orange, berries , kiwi, mango, broccoli, spinach, pepper, pepper
  • Vitamin E : vegetable oils (including olive oil for its health benefits), nuts, avocado, oilseeds, whole grains
  • Zinc : seafood, lean meat, milk, nuts
  • Zoochemicals : red meat, offal, fish

Take antioxidants to boost your health

Antioxidants are components of foods used by the body to protect themselves from free radicals – molecules normally produced during metabolism, but which can multiply uncontrollably under certain circumstances.

Why should we protect ourselves from free radicals?

In principle, free radicals are not a problem. In fact, the body needs it to fight the infection, to stop the multiplication of the cancerous cells and to regenerate its tissues. However, with age, the body’s antioxidant defense system weakens, allowing free radicals to multiply at will. Exposure to the sun, air pollution and cigarette smoke can also increase the production of free radicals, just like stress hormones, by the way

When the body is overwhelmed by their numbers and can no longer fight them, it is in a state of oxidative stress. Highly unstable, free radicals then spread rapidly to neighboring molecules, triggering a process called oxidation, sometimes with serious consequences and dangerous for the body, and may increase the risk of cancer and several diseases.

Among the other consequences of free radicals and oxidation, we know that they are particularly involved in heart disease, oxygen binding to LDL ( “bad” cholesterol) and causing the formation and accumulation of greasy plaques on the walls of the arteries. This phenomenon, called atherosclerosis, can possibly block the blood supply to the heart. Excess free radicals are also involved in cataracts, immune deficiencies, arthritis and premature cell aging.

Given the harmful effects of free radicals, oxidation and age, the antioxidant defense system of the body weakens, it is important to seek reinforcements on the side of food that is rich. To fight against the effects of free radicals, it is also much more effective to focus on diet than supplements  to take full advantage of the benefits and virtues of antioxidants.

Types of antioxidants and their health benefits

Epidemiological studies, that is to say, conducted with a given population, we learn on the one hand that people who consume a lot of fruits and vegetables live longer than others.

It is also known from laboratory tests that certain antioxidants can prevent specific diseases. In addition, the low incidence of cardiovascular disease in Japan is explained by the high consumption in this country of green tea, rich in flavonoids, and that lutein, an antioxidant found in corn and green vegetables such as spinach, would protect against macular degeneration, a disease that attacks the lens of the eye.

You will also find below a list of antioxidants, as well as their specific potential health benefits and benefits according to scientific research.

  • Flavonoids
    According to some studies, green tea extract or grape seed extract and various flavonoids, such as rutin, could reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease. Some phytonutrients have a special action on specific tissues or organs. For example, bilberry extracts, rich in anthocyanosides (flavonoid pigments), improve the state of the retina; the antioxidants of ginseng extracts act on the cerebral circulation …
  • Antioxidant Vitamins: Vitamin A (in the form of retinol or carotenoids)
    A diet rich in carotenoids (which the body partially converts into vitamin A) would reduce the risk of certain cancers. Studies suggest that two carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin protect the macular degeneration related to  aging, a common cause of blindness.
  • Antioxidant Vitamins: Vitamin C
    Antioxidant effects: neutralizes free radicals and regenerates the antioxidant potential of vitamin E after its reaction with free radicals.
  • Antioxidant Vitamins: Vitamin E
    Antioxidant Effects: Helps prevent free radical oxidation of polyunsaturated fatty acids from cell membranes. The more polyunsaturated fatty acids you consume, the more vitamin E you need  to protect them from this oxidation.
  • Antioxidant Minerals: Copper
    Antioxidant Effects: present in many enzymes to protect against damage caused by free radicals; necessary for bone growth, connective tissue formation, and iron assimilation.
  • Antioxidant minerals: Manganese
    Antioxidant effects: present in many enzymes to fight against the damage due to the excess of free radicals.
  • Antioxidant Minerals: Selenium
    Antioxidant Effects: present in the enzyme that protects DNA from free radical damage. Its impairment increases the risk of prostate  cancer.
  • Antioxidant minerals: Zinc
    Antioxidant effects: present in many enzymes to fight against the damage due to the excess of free radicals.

Some tips and tricks to finish to enjoy the virtues of antioxidants …

1) Experts recommend that women aged 19 to 50 take seven to eight servings of vegetables a day, including at least one of dark green vegetables and one of orange vegetables.

2) Since the intensity of color is often related to the richness of antioxidants, opt for oranges and berries rather than, for example, honeydew melon honey, or for romaine lettuce rather than iceberg lettuce.

3) You can also eat a small piece of dark chocolate every day and have tea and coffee.

4) As much as possible, each of your meals should include foods rich in antioxidants: slices of tomato on your toast, fruit with morning cereals, salad at dinner.

5) A glass of juice corresponds to a few servings of fruits and vegetables, but beware of the calories they provide in abundance.

6) You can also make your own antioxidant drink, such as blended yogurt with fruit.

In conclusion? The key is the variety of all these foods! This will allow you to enjoy all the benefits and virtues of all categories of food-based antioxidants.

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