Diets have come and gone, most of them boasting of their abilities to make one lose weight or appear younger than they are. These diets are also promoting healthy eating style full of naturally occurring vitamins and minerals that have often been touted as the fountain of youth.
But how do diets rich in antioxidants affect the aging process?
Before we address this question, you need to know what these antioxidants are and how can they affect the body before it affects the aging process. They may or may not be related to each other but knowing the other seems to be as significant as knowing the first.
Effects of Antioxidants on the Body
Antioxidants are naturally occurring compounds that come in the form of vitamins like Vitamin A, C, and E, as well as other minerals and compounds like flavanols and lycopene. These can be found robustly in nature, and their main function is to prevent damage caused by oxidants, which is more known as free radicals.
Free radicals can be found in the natural environment as well but they do hurt our body, and this is what antioxidant diets aim to combat. While the body can produce antioxidants to fight off viruses and other illnesses, diets rich in antioxidant may help boost their levels and give you more than just an improved immune system.
Antioxidants not only help fight off free radicals, but it may also help enhance your body’s immune system and protect cell membranes from mutation and the other damaging effects of free radicals. An increased antioxidant intake may lead to an optimized immune system which may lead to a healthier body that is disease-free or even disease-resistant.
How Do Diets Rich in Antioxidants Affect the Aging Process?
The sun produces harmful ultraviolet rays that can cause photo-oxidative damage which may then lead to wrinkles, uneven skin tones, and it may even lead to skin cancer. These reactions also cause premature aging, and it may take more than just a supplement to reverse these effects if not addressed early on.
What antioxidants do with your skin is that it helps stimulate the growth of collagen and helps repair the damage caused by continuous sun exposure, as well as damage caused by pollutants. So how do diets rich in antioxidants affect the aging process? Here are some of them:
- Scar Treatment
Some antioxidant serums have rosehip oil, aloe extracts, and other naturally occurring compounds as their main ingredient, and these naturally occurring essential oils may help reduce the appearance of scars, slowly erasing them from existence.
- Sun Damage Repair
Basking under the sun is not exactly a bad thing as it helps burn up dying and diseased cells, preparing a well-tilled field for new skin cells to grow. However, too much sun exposure can damage healthy cells and may prevent new ones from growing. Antioxidants can help stimulate the blood flow to the skin which can encourage the growth of newer cells, pushing off sun-damaged ones.
- Wrinkle Reducer
Antioxidants like Vitamins C and E help in preventing fine lines and wrinkles from forming, while other forms of antioxidant can help plump out the skin and leave a more youthful skin.
- Skin Firming
Coenzyme Q-10 is a skin-firming antioxidant that is often found in eye creams and other skin products that may help rejuvenate skin cells and improve your overall skin health. These give the impression that antioxidants can fight off aging, which they may or may not do.
Diets Rich in Antioxidants
Fitness plans and food diets that have a lot of vegetables and fruits in them tend to be the diets that are rich in antioxidants, which can help the body regenerate healthier cells at a faster rate. Antioxidant-rich food is not limited to fruits and vegetables, some nuts and kinds of meat have been said to contain high amounts of helpful antioxidants that are beneficial to your body.
There are dozens of food types and items that are rich in antioxidants, but there are a few that are touted as being superfoods due to the number of nutrients and antioxidants that they bring into the body. A few of these superfoods include, but is not limited to, the following:
These round orbs of the gods are known to contain resveratrol and phytochemicals which are antioxidants that may help protect your body against cancer and heart ailments. The darker the color of the grape skin, the more nutrients it may contain.
These berries are known to contain several vitamins and minerals that help strengthen the immune system. Like grapes, blueberries are also known to have phytochemicals which may help protect your body against cancer.
Opinion is divided regarding the health benefits of nuts, but as long as they are prepared healthily and conscientiously, this superfood can bring in the healthy kind of fat together with proteins and complex carbohydrates. Since there are different kinds of nuts, it would be best to assume that each nut is different, but most do contain resveratrol and plant sterols. Both of these antioxidants may help fight against cancer, and they may also help lower blood cholesterol.
- Dark Green Vegetables
Spinach, broccoli, and kale, as well as cabbage and collard greens, are some of the vegetables that have been known to contain several important nutrients and antioxidants that are beneficial for the body. These antioxidants include vitamins A, C, and E, as well as calcium and potassium.
From the far reaches of the Orient comes this nutrient-filled hot beverage that contains anthocyanin and pro-anthocyanin, both of which help fight against inflammation and may help block cell damage that may lead to cancer.
- Whole Grains
Grains like brown rice can deliver a good amount of zinc and selenium which can help in the fight against heart disease and cancer. Phytochemicals are also known to be present in these grains, and they also protect you from illnesses.
These food items should be all organic and grown locally for a much better impact, not only on your health but to the environment and economy as well. Consume the right amount of these foods to maximize the nutrition that they can provide.
Choosing the Right Diet
The best diet in the world is one that lets you eat all the antioxidant-rich food that you want. These diets are often packed with vitamins, minerals, and fibers that compliment antioxidants and jointly produces a healthier you.
Antioxidant serums and supplements are also available, and they may help in keeping your body fit and healthy, and while there is antioxidant loss involved during consumption and digestion, getting it in your system naturally is still the best way to supplement the antioxidants that your body produces on its own.