The power of antioxidants in your food can help you feel well and think better. Plus as an added bonus they fight cancer and help you maintain a healthy weight.
Antioxidants work against free radicals, which damage cells. Consuming foods high in antioxidants can improve your memory and mood. Some examples of antioxidants include beta-carotene, lycopene, and vitamins C, E, and A. Foods high in antioxidants are often colorful. This is especially true of any food containing beta-carotene.
Antioxidants are known to destroy free radicals. They also exist in numerous foods and by eating these foods you can help improve your wellbeing in several ways. This includes reversing memory loss, and seeing an improvement in coordination due to the reduction of free radicals. (These impair the human brain.) Free radicals are particles and unstable molecules that destroy cells and sometimes this can lead to cancer. Free radicals are numerous in our modern-day environment and come from chemicals that we utilize in various industries and in our homes.
Consuming berries, apples, cherries, spinach, and ginko biloba, which are all high in antioxidants will help improve your memory and mood. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, the antioxidants in ginko biloba can also be used for helping Alzheimer’s patients.
So, if you want to experience all of these benefits, you’re going to want to increase food in your diet which is rich in antioxidants. The National Cancer Society also recommends eating colorful fruits, vegetables, and foods that are high in selenium, a mineral and antioxidant enzyme. Selenium is most commonly found in the soil where plants such as rice are grown. The selenium in wheat fed to grass-fed animals, not necessarily all commercially processed meat, is also a good source of antioxidants which can help improve memory and mood. Another source of selenium for vegans is Brazil nuts. Some of the richest foods in antioxidants are prunes, raisins, blueberries, blackberries, garlic, kale, cranberries, strawberries, raspberries, and spinach.
Heating foods to a cooked temperature can destroy some vitamins, but it also enhances antioxidant consumption. According to the University of California’s Department of Mathematics, cooking foods such as tomatoes and spinach actually increases the antioxidants from the lycopene in tomatoes, and the lutein of green spinach. The plant cells open up, increasing the absorption of the nutrients and antioxidants. Some vitamins are lost in cooking. Eating a varied diet of both cooked and raw vegetables and fruits reduces your need to take supplements.
When reading nutrition labels, keep in mind there are alternate names for Vitamins A, C, and E. There are three antioxidant forms of vitamin A-retinol (vitamin A1), 3, 4-didehydroretinol (vitamin A2), and 3-hydroxy-retinol (vitamin A3). Vitamin A foods that help with mood, memory, and other brain functions are liver, egg yolks, carrots, and sweet potatoes.
Vitamin E is also known as alpha-tocopherol, and is found in almonds, safflower oil, soybeans, and broccoli. Vitamin C is also known as ascorbic acid.
There are an abundance of foods which are rich in these vitamins and antioxidants, and to get the most out of them you should purchase whole food in season that is free of pesticides and other free-radicals. The consumption of these antioxidant rich foods will improve mood & memory.