Evidence for the health benefits of antioxidant rich foods is overwhelming. One of its primary benefits is in disease prevention, which is excellent news if you want to avoid future heart disease and diabetes. On the high triglycerides diet antioxidant-rich foods should take center stage. In this article required look more closely at just what makes antioxidant foods such as superfood.
Antioxidant Rich Foods Fight Oxidation
Basically, it plays an important role in counteracting the destructive forces of oxidation. In scientific terms, oxidation refers to the loss of electrons when two or more substances interact. Though that sounds rather complicated, we can visually see the effects of oxidation play out in certain foods.
If you cut an apple in half and leave it as is, you can actually see the white parts of the apple gradually turn brown. The browning of the apple is due to oxidation. In our body, as oxygen goes in and out of our cells, free radicals are created. These free radicals cause harm to our cells. Unfortunately, because we live, oxidation is unavoidable. However, antioxidants exist in the food available to us to help us reverse the damaging effects by combating the free radicals.
Antioxidant Foods Contain Flavonoids
One component of antioxidant rich foods that give such awesome health benefits is called the flavonoid. There are thousands of flavonoids known today yet scientists feel they have not even begun to identify all that are available to us in the food we eat. Flavonoids are a type of chemical that exist only in plant-based foods. The best sources of flavonoids are fruits and vegetables such as apples, onions, berries, and broccoli, as well as in beverages such as tea, coffee, beer, wine and fruit drinks. While not ideal, supplements can provide us with antioxidants. However, your best source remains food.
Antioxidant Foods Have Multiple Health Benefits
When we consume foods that contain flavonoids, it pretty much means that we also take advantage of the antioxidants they contain which, as mentioned above, help the body combat the inevitable and dreaded cell damage. In addition to this, research has identified that flavonoids in antiokidant rich foods have other useful effects on your vascular health. Among such effects are lowering blood pressure and improving blood flow to the brain and heart, thus making blood platelets less thick. This helps keep the cholesterol from clogging in blood vessels. It also helps in reducing the inflammatory responses that can actually clog arteries.
Heart Disease Prevention With Antioxidant Rich Foods
There was a study done at the University of East Anglia that demonstrated that women with type 2 diabetes can avoid certain heart diseases by eating an diet containing plenty of antioxidant rich foods. 93 post-menopausal women diagnosed with type 2 diabetes participated. Half of them were provided with 2 bars of flavonoid-rich chocolates every day, while the other half were given chocolate that only contained a placebo.
Those who ate chocolate rich in flavonoids were 3.4% less likely to develop cardiovascular issues till the successive decade. These results turned out to be very vital in terms of dietary intervention in heart disease prevention for diabetic women. Furthermore, those who had extra flavonoids had considerably lower insulin and cholesterol levels in their systems.
For maximum health benefits and ultimate protection against the devastating effects of heart disease, diabetes and cancer, be sure to add antioxidant rich foods to your diet and the diet of your family.