Antioxidants are found in plant food like fruits and vegetables. these compounds prevent cells from oxidative stress caused by free radical.
Antioxidants helps to inhibit the process of oxidation that produces unstable molecule known as free radical that damages the cell membrane structures protein lipid and DNA.
Free radicals are compound that contains one or more unpaired electrons that makes it more active, here antioxidant plays protective role by donating its electron and neutralize free radicals.
Stress, smoking, alcohol, sunlight and pollution are the factors that accelerate the oxidation process or production of free radicals, these molecules are linked with various health problems including heart disease and various types of cancer.
Effect of free radicals
Source of antioxidants
Nutrient antioxidants –vitamin A,C,E zinc copper selenium
Non nutrient antioxidants – phytochemical in plant like lycopene anthocyanin. It is believed to have greater antioxidants effect than vitamin and minerals
Some antioxidants compounds and their sources
- Allium Sulphur – leek onion garlic
- Anthocyanin – eggplant grapes berries
- Flavonoids – tea, green tea citrus fruits red wine
- Iso flavonoids –soybean, tofu, lentil, milk
- Lignans – sesame seed bran whole grain
- Beta-carotene – pumpkin mangoes carrot spinach parsley