Friday, March 30, 2012

Anti-oxidants & Free Radicals?!? What the?...




We are all aware that we should eat plently of antioxidants in order to ward off disease and fight the ageing process. But what are anti oxidants and what are these funny sounding "Free Radicals" that we are supposed to be fighting??
Our body produces Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) and Reactive Nitrogen Species (RNS) which are compounds proposed to have detrimental health effects. Cancer, dementia, diabetes, accelerated ageing, arthritis, eye disease and lung disease are just a small number of health issues related to oxidative cell damage caused by these compounds. Our bodies natural protective mechanisms neutralize ROS, RNS and their by-products; however in some cases with poor lifestyle and dietary choices, the balance between these nasties (known collectivly as Free Radicals) and our body's anti oxidant capabilities means that our bodies are suffering from "oxidative stress" leading to cellular damage and inflammation.
Anti oxidants are a group of vitamins, enzymes and amino acids required by the body to neutralise free radicals. They include Vitamin C, E, Beta-carotene and Zinc; Co enzyme Q10 and Glutathione. Many herbs also have strong anti-oxidant properties due to their nutritional content -Turmeric, Grape seeds, Polygonum, Milk Thistle, Green tea and Olive leaf to name just a few!
So what's in our food...
Foods with dark bright colours tend to be the highest in anti-oxidants; especially those with red or purple colouring. Try these simple tips to increase the anti-oxidant in your diet:
  • Add a handful of fresh or frozen berries to your breakfast muesli or smoothie
  • Include a tablespoon of Chia seeds in your yoghurt (allow to sit for 10min before eating)
  • Choose darker greens instead of lettuce for your salads
  • Include roasted beetroot and red cabbage in your salads
  • Choose dark red grapes over the green ones
  • Try to eat as much raw produce as possible as heat can destroy some anti oxidants
  • Drink Green tea every day.

How to avoid increasing your oxidative stress:

  • Reduce exposure to smoking, pollution or toxic chemicals in the air such as nail polish, chemical cleaning products, air freshners etc
  • If you have a stressful lifestyle ensure you have time out periods and find ways to wind down and relax
  • Get a good sleep each night
  • Avoid overly processed foods and alcohol
  • Check for heavy metal toxicity (this can be done through hair analysis testing)

Another great way to enhance your anti-oxidant intake is through super foods such as Acai, Spirulina and Barley Grass. We at Evelyn Faye have just taken on a new range of superfoods from Passion Projects. Not only are they great for you, they are Australian made and the packaging is 100% biodegradeable. Good for you and the environment!! Also, unlike other super food brands they are YUMMY!

Check them out... http://www.passionprojects.com.au/?page_id=315

We also have the Abode range of Cleaning products which contain ONLY natural ingredients so create less toxins in your home and in your lungs! Check them out!http://www.cleanabode.com.au/

For the vanity in all of us we also carry Butter Nail Polish which contain no Formaldehyde, Toluene, DBP or Parabens. Plus they come in the most beautiful colours! Take a look!

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