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So no doubt you have probably heard of antioxidants by now, but why do we take them? The answer is simple; we are constantly being bombarded by “Free Radicals”. We only ever hear about taking antioxidants because they are good for you and never hear or understand what they are fighting (Free Radicals).  Whether you are trying to reverse a disease or prevent one, antioxidants need to be a critical part of your diet and supplements daily.

Free radicals are highly offensive compounds (mutant oxygen molecules that destroying your cells inside and out) that are introduced to the body in several different ways. Our normal metabolism is one of the key ways in which these harmful compounds come to exist in the body. Our body’s are just like a car. We take in fuel, burn it and get energy and exhaust. The exhaust, if not neutralized or vented from the car, will eventually make the car not run properly or can even make it stop working altogether. Just like with your car, the faster you go the more exhaust you will produce. This exhaust (free radicals) can and will if not neutralized cause damage to your cells and trigger a cascade of events leading to poor health. Other ways we are exposed to free radicals is through our environment. Environmental sources of free radicals include exposure to radiation (x-rays, sun exposure) cigarette smoke, unsaturated fats, alcohol, ozone, automobile exhaust, heavy metals and from many other sources found in our air, water and foods. You can’t hide from them and if you do not take a proactive approach, you will most likely end up with one or more of the health conditions now linked to free radical damage.

Here is another analogy to help give you a better visual on what antioxidants do in your body. First, imagine that a free radical is a very sharp pin sticking out of a ball. Second, imagine a room full of balloons. Now, we will take the ball with the pin in it and bounce it in the room with all of the balloons. What will happen? The thin pin will poke very small holes in our balloons and the balloons will become damaged and begin to leak. Now imagine an even smaller ball with a pin sticking out of it getting inside the balloons, but instead of being filled with air, the balloons are filled with other beneficial products. The small ball and pin will be causing damage to not only the outside membrane of my balloons, but to the inside matter as well. In this example, the balloons are the cells in your body and the small ball and pin are free radicals inside our cells, poking holes from the inside as well. If your body can’t repair the damage fast enough, you have a build-up of damaged cells and in some cases, a body that is reproducing mutant cells (Cancer). In your cardiovascular system, the number one reason we develop plaque in our arteries is due to inflammation caused by toxins and Free Radicals.

So what is a person to do? I recommend a diet high in antioxidants and supplementing with additional antioxidants be a part of your cardiovascular supplement program. Antioxidants are known to neutralize these harmful compounds and protect the body from the potential damage they cause.

For those of you who have dabbled with supplements, you probably have heard about antioxidants and are familiar with supplements such as C, E, Zinc and Selenium, but you may not be aware of the abundance of other (more powerful) antioxidants like CoQ10 (or Ubiquinol), Pycnogenol, Resveratrol, Turmeric, Grape seed, and Green Tea. We all need antioxidants as part of our daily supplement program. Whether you are young or old, the benefits are to numerous to count. When seeking an Antioxidant supplement, I recommend finding out what antioxidants are good for my particular health needs and using 4 or 5 of them together.