Bryce Wylde, a homeopathic doctor, nutritionist and author of The Antioxidant Prescription: How to Use the Power of Antioxidants to Prevent Disease and Stay Healthy for Life, visited to explain where free radicals come from, how they effect our bodies and what everyone can do to harness the power of antioxidants to achieve better overall health.
Where do free radicals come from?
For the most part, we get them from things in our environment (cleaning products, make up, smog, cell phones, plastics etc.) but they're also in your body naturally. The problem is that we've been bombarded with free radicals in many things for years and our bodies aren't equipped to handle them all.
What are antioxidants?
Antioxidants are the things that fight free radicals. We're familiar with them coming from coffee, wine and dark chocolate. Scientists have actually rated foods in terms of their antioxidant levels on a scale. It's called the ORAC scale (Oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity). Millions have been spent on finding ORAC values in food so you can tailor your diet to get the very best into you to fight free radicals.
A few examples (in order of highest ORAC to lowest…):
BERRIES: Elderberry, cranberry, plum, blueberry, prune, blackberry, raspberry, apple, etc.
VEGETABLES: Artichoke, red cabbage, rapini or broccoli, russet baked potato, spinach, etc.
GRAINS: Oats, amaranth, barley, brown rice, buckwheat, etc…
BEANS: Small red beans, red kidney beans, black beans, pinto beans, lentils, soybeans
NUTS AND SEEDS: Pecans, Walnuts, Hazelnuts, Pistachios, Almonds, Macadamia Nuts etc…
FISH: Tilapia, Tuna (canned), salmon (canned) etc…
Coffee is great, as is black tea and green tea. I recommend one glass of red wine a day with a small amount of dark chocolate as well.
But you know what people find MOST surprising? Herbs - they are PACKED with antioxidants and most are better dried than fresh (fresh herbs are full of water so dried are more potent). Herbs are packed with antioxidants.
Vitamin D is the most vital antioxidant available. In Canada we don't get much sun and a burn causes free radicals, so it's best to get it in pill form.
Take Bryce's Antioxidant Quiz
Bryce Wylde is known as one of Canada's leading alternative health experts. He is a homeopathic doctor and nutritionist, the director of The Vaughan Medical Centre and the host of Wylde on Health on CP24.
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