Healthy eating does not only supply the body with nutritional benefits, it helps produce natural benefits that help you live longer and help fight against a number of diseases. One such benefit is the provision of antioxidants to the body.
Antioxidants are naturally found in foods and can include vitamins and minerals, as well as plant chemicals like flavonoids and carotenoids. They function by countering the effects of free radicals – the by-product and highly reactive atoms formed from various oxidative reactions that occur in the body. These free radicals are capable of attacking the healthy cells of the body. Thus, antioxidants function to help protect the body against cell damage, heart diseases, cancer, dementia and other types of chronic diseases. There are several fruits and vegetables rich in antioxidants that should be incorporated into your daily diet and some of them include:
1. Açaí berries
These berries have some of the highest antioxidant content, and are sometimes classified as a superfood. Some of the benefits of açaí berries include their very high fiber content, and their aid in the prevention from arthritis, weight loss, high cholesterol, as well as improved skin appearance.
Bananas are a great fruit that help produce not only a significant amount of antioxidant properties but also serve as a great source of potassium that help lower blood pressure. They also help produce resistant starch that help boost metabolism.
Peaches are a rich treasure of antioxidants chiefly because the red-pigmented beta-carotene visible in their vibrant orange colour, especially in California cling peaches, is a powerful member of the antioxidant family. Something interesting about peaches is that canning them helps improve their antioxidant properties even further and also helps boost their vitamin content and folate properties. In fact, a Michigan State University study suggests that canned California cling peaches serve as the better option to fresh peaches as they provide a more nutritious intake with lower cost.
4. Citrus Fruits
Citrus fruits should be added to every diet as these superfruits are also very rich in vitamin C, fiber, and small amounts of other nutrients and disease fighting chemicals that help counter the effects of sun damage, and help regulate oil glands.
Apples are another very rich source of antioxidants partly because of their green-red colour. Their skins contain quercetin that packs antihistamine and anti inflammatory properties and helps protect from heart disease and possible allergic reactions.