Antioxidant Dietary Supplements

Written by Emily Ledbetter
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\Antioxidants are enzymes or other organic molecules in the body that can counteract the damaging effects of oxygen in tissue. The normal processes of oxidation in the body produce highly reactive free radicals. Protecting the body against free radicals is essential as they are thought to be the source of much damage to overall health and wellness. Excessive free radicals can come from air pollution, tobacco smoke, ozone, radiation, dietary fats and other sources.

Some of the most commonly recommended antioxidants are Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Beta-Carotene, Selenium and Coenzyme Q10. There are a number of foods that are rich in these antioxidants including green leafy vegetables, berries, whole grains and fish. In addition to incorporating antioxidant-rich foods into the diet, there are also supplements available to prevent and fight the damaging effects of free radicals in the body.

The Role of Supplements

Each time an antioxidant destroys a free radical molecule, the antioxidant is neutralized. For this reason, it is necessary to constantly replenish the antioxidants in the body and one effective method is supplementation. Antioxidants do not all act in the same way so different types are more effective against different free radicals. Supplements are formulated to combine the most powerful antioxidants into one pill, giving the body the most effective protection against all forms of free radicals.

Antioxidant dietary supplements have been shown to protect the body against several types of cancer, improve immune system function, support artery health and enhance heart, lung and prostate health. The supplements are also associated with lowering of cholesterol and stabilization of blood sugar.

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