Antioxidants seem today to be the keys to longevity. The data from the SUVIMAX study suggest in particular that there is an interest in optimizing food intake. They are also found in many dietary supplements, but such supplementation is currently controversial.
What are antioxidants used for?
The use of oxygen generates free radicals, which can cause damage to our cells. These phenomena are notably responsible for cellular ageing. Antioxidants are the molecules involved in the defense mechanisms against these “attacks”. Some, like vitamin C, “stalk” free radicals directly. Others allow the action of antioxidant enzymes, such as selenium or coenzyme Q10. Finally, polyphenols help fight against the formation of free radicals.
In addition, although antioxidants have no direct effect on cholesterol levels, they do reduce the oxidation of LDL cholesterol.
Anti oxidants help fight free radicals. Free radicals are highly reactive chemicals that attack molecules by capturing electrons and thereby altering chemical structures. Well-known antioxidants include a number of enzymes and other substances such as vitamin C, vitamin E and beta-carotene (which is converted to vitamin A) which are able to counteract the damaging effects of oxidation . Antioxidants are also commonly added to food products like vegetable oils and prepared foods to prevent or delay their deterioration from air action.
Antioxidants may possibly reduce the risk of cancer and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Antioxidants clearly slow the progression of AMD. An antioxidant is a molecule that decreases or prevents the oxidation of other chemical substances.
Oxidation is part of a redox reaction that transfers electrons from a substance to an oxidizing agent. This reaction can produce free radicals which lead to destructive chain reactions. Antioxidants are able to stop these chain reactions by oxidizing with free radicals and thus annihilating their action. These properties are found a lot in the families of thiols and phenols.
Although oxidation reactions are necessary for life, they can also be destructive: plants and animals use and produce many antioxidants to protect themselves, such as glutathione, vitamin C and vitamin E, or enzymes such as catalase, superoxide dismutase and some peroxidases. A deficiency or absence of antioxidant enzyme production results in oxidative stress that can damage or destroy cells.
Oxidative stress has been implicated in the pathogenesis of many human diseases, the use of antioxidants in pharmacology is therefore much studied to treat strokes and neurodegenerative diseases in particular. However, it is not yet known whether oxidative stress is the cause or the consequence of these diseases.
Antioxidants are also important ingredients in food supplements with the aim of maintaining health and preventing certain diseases, such as cancer or coronary heart disease. Although studies suggest that antioxidant supplements are beneficial to health, large clinical studies have found no particular benefits and have even found that an excess of antioxidant supplements (or supplements) can sometimes have negative effects.
The most famous antioxidants are ß-carotene (provitamin A), ascorbic acid (vitamin C), tocopherol (vitamin E), polyphenols and lycopene. These include flavonoids (widespread in plants), tannins (in cocoa, coffee, tea, grapes, etc.), anthocyanins (especially in red fruits) and phenolic acids (in cereals, fruits and vegetables). Fruits are rich in antioxidants, especially the so-called red ones, such as cranberries, due to the combined presence of vitamin C and polyphenols. The antioxidant power of a food, i.e. its ability to resist oxidation, is expressed in ORAC units (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity: this value measures the ability of the food to neutralize the peroxyl radical ):
It is worth adding to this list of fruits the richest species, like the tomato, in lycopene (tetraterpene, liposoluble red pigment and powerful antioxidant of the family of carotenoids), namely: watermelon, guava , papaya… which rank among the fruits with the highest concentration of antioxidants.
Mangosteen — the fruit of the mangosteen tree — is said to contain powerful natural antioxidants, including at least 40 xanthones. The rind of the fruit contains vitamins, catechins, stilbenes and xanthones, including alpha-mangosteen, among others.
Tomato, watercress, garlic, green cabbage, spinach, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, alfalfa sprout, broccoli, beet and red pepper are the vegetables with the highest concentration of antioxidants.
The antioxidant character of these foods is attributed to their rich content of vitamin C, carotenoids (including lycopenes), flavonoids, phenolic compounds, terpenoids and resveratrol.
During cooking, certain antioxidants such as vitamin C are inactivated, while others are transformed to become more active or more easily absorbed by the digestive system. This is the case of tomato lycopenes. Indeed, cooking the tomato increases the amount of bioavailable lycopene, the heat releasing it from the cells of the tomato. Thus, there is about four times more bioavailable lycopene in tomato sauce than in fresh tomatoes!
Many studies have attempted to study the impact of taking antioxidant food supplements in the prevention of different diseases.
The results of these studies are conflicting.
A diet rich in antioxidants could allow you to live young longer. Protective foods include whole grains, calcium-enriched soy milk, Parmesan cheese, yogurt, carrots and broccoli, among others. While crisps, fried potatoes, fatty cheeses, whole milk and white rice are aging-accelerating foods
Daily anti-aging lifestyle
To have a good anti-aging routine with antioxidant products, count on using a variety of antioxidants. Ingest foods that are naturally rich in antioxidants, such as fruits, vegetables, and green teas, but don’t eliminate vitamin supplements that are a good source of common antioxidants. Indeed, some vitamin supplements satisfy certain needs, such as hair, skin and nails by including certain combinations of antioxidants and other vitamins.
In addition to food items, consider using antioxidant creams and lotions. Look for ingredients like vitamins A, B, C and E, enzyme Q10 and AHAS. If the body is treated with antioxidants both internally and externally, it will certainly begin to reap the rewards.
Not only will skin tone and appearance improve, but the other health benefits of antioxidants will also occur.
Top 3 the best anti-aging supplements
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