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4 Best Antioxidant Vitamins

Antioxidants are natural substances that help fight the damaging effects of free radicals in your body.We are right in the thick of ‘Cold and Flu Season.’ What does this mean? There is a great need to ramp-up our vitamin intake, to help promote our health by boosting our immune system. And, what better way to do this than by taking these four antioxidant vitamins?

Listening to Vitamin Talk

Step one is learning about antioxidant vitamins: Antioxidants are natural substances that help fight the damaging effects of free radicals in your body.

What are free radicals? They can cause premature aging of cells and can be caused by smoking, environmental stresses, pollution, too. Need more of an explanation? Free radicals are unstable oxygen molecules that attack healthy tissues and contribute to numerous diseases and illnesses.

Your next question may be what antioxidants are best. Not so fast, there are tons you can take, but these four have generated a lot of media attention; they are pomegranate, resveratrol, green tea extract and Açaí  (pronounced ah-sigh-EE).

Four Additional Ways to Stay Healthy

1. Pomegranates are red, known for being oddly shaped and make a great juice. But, did you know that the most abundant vitamin contained in pomegranates is vitamin C (ascorbic acid)? Vitamin C packs a powerful punch because it rids the body of free radicals, which shouldn’t come as a surprise. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Information Center (FNIC) notes that one pomegranate of a 4-inch diameter contains 28.8 mg of vitamin C.

2. One place where we could stand to rev-up our immune system is while at an airport. We can come into contact with so many germs and not even realize it, but this is where taking resveratrol can come in handy. Resveratrol is a compound that various plants make to ward off fungi, bacteria and other microbial attackers. Resveratrol commonly is found in the skin of red grapes, however other sources of this antioxidant are in berries and peanuts. What’s more, now is the perfect time to go grab that glass of wine with dinner, because wine is a great source of resveratrol, in fact.

3. Any kind of tea is savory, but green tea extract is especially good for the common cold and flu. You see, green tea contains molecules called polyphenols (antioxidants), which are said to help prevent swelling and inflammation. As a footnote, green tea reportedly contains the highest concentration of beneficial antioxidants. That’s not all, it may protect cartilage between the bones and lessen joint degeneration.

4. Açaí can at times be difficult to pronounce, but you probably will always remember its health benefits, when it comes to the cold and flu. Açaí is believed to contain properties that detoxify the body and this antioxidant works to eradicate these harmful substances from your system. How does this benefit the body? It in turn strengthens the immune system.

On the Winning Side

You can’t go wrong with taking antioxidant vitamins. But, now you have a clearer sense of which ones may be right for you. It’s your body, contribute to your overall health all year round, by taking antioxidant supplements.

Web Links:

http://www.vitaminworld.com/antioxidants-089;

http://www.livestrong.com/article/260114-vitamins-in-pomegranates/;

http://fnic.nal.usda.gov/;

http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/resveratrol-supplements;

http://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/resveratrol-the-hype-continues-201202034189;

http://www.doctoroz.com/blog/donna-cardillo-rn-ma/cold-and-flu-home-remedies;

http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-960-green+tea.aspx?activeIngredientId=960&activeIngredientName=green+tea&source=1;

http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/green-tea;

http://www.acaiberry.org/benefits.html.

-Kimberly Williams

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