Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Better your health the easy way. Antioxidants.

The older I become the more disease is thrown in my face. I watch close friends and family members battle high blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes, cancer, and the awful list goes on. Over the last few years it has become REAL to me. We should all be doing things in our daily lives to battle this epidemic that is happening across the US. Don’t you want to live your life to the fullest? Be around AND WELL for a long time to come?  I spent years in school filling my head with facts on how to improve the well-being of others. I hate that over the last few years I stopped really sharing this information. So, here are some tips to leading a healthier life. I’ll try to keep this an easy read!

First, let’s talk free radicals. I hope you know what these are, and battle them at every meal!  In case you don’t, let me explain... A free radical is a reactive atom that has unpaired electrons, which will happily bond to cells inside of your body (called oxidation). When they enter the body, through stress, smoking, pollution, toxins, and other junk that we come into contact with, they damage body tissue. This process can be very severe depending on your lifestyle. These free radicals cause us to age.  Also, they can cause autoimmune diseases, and cancers. Unfortunately, this happens to every one of us. In our developed worlds these free radicals lurk in so many places from pesticides in the foods we eat, pollution coming out of factories in the city that you live, chemicals in certain plastics we eat from, etc..  I’m not trying to scare you, but you should be aware of these things.

Thankfully there are ways to fight these little jerks wreaking havoc in your body. The answer is simple; EAT WELL! Antioxidants found in fruits and vegetables will naturally interact with and stabilize free radicals, which prevents them from causing damage to our cells.  It is important to load up on as many antioxidants as possible to stabilize all the free radicals you may have come into contact with throughout the day. Do you ever hear people say that one glass of red wine can reverse the effects of a cigarette? It’s true (and awesome); it’s a balancing act.

You can find antioxidants in fruits and vegetables.  The richer the color, the better. Aim for the recommended 2 -3 cups of vegetables and 2 cups of fruits daily. Pack it with even more antioxidants by choosing super foods. Super food is just a fancy way of saying that these foods have more than your average amount of antioxidants and nutrients.  A few examples of super foods are blueberries, acai, figs, garlic, green tea, pomegranate, and macca root.  I know you have heard of this craze.  Jump on board and try some out!

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