Antioxidants are essential for human survival. These are molecules that fight against free radicals in the body. If the body has a high level of free radicals it can cause harm and linked to multiple illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Typically, antioxidants are found in foods especially in vegetables, fruits, whole foods, and other plant-based.
Antioxidants are also used as a preservative. It plays a crucial role in food manufacturing especially in food production by pro-longing the shelf-life of the products. Antioxidants can be either water or fat-soluble. Fat-soluble acts in cell membranes while the water-soluble perform their actions in the fluid inside and outside cells. Antioxidants in food served vital functions to ensure overall health.
There are also called dietary antioxidants that include flavonoids, Vitamin C, and Vitamin E. Foods high in antioxidants can help to fight and prevent chronic diseases. Antioxidant rich foods such as coffee, berries, and dark chocolate are very popular in the Western diet. Meat products and fish is also a source of antioxidants however, it has a lesser amount compared to fruits and vegetables.
Blueberries are loaded with nutrients and antioxidants. It is one of the foods high in antioxidants. Base on FRAP (the ferric reducing ability of plasma) in every 100 grams of blueberries it contains 9.2 mmol of antioxidants. The antioxidants present in blueberries is called anthocyanins and it is shown that it can reduce the risk of heart disease, lowering LDL or bad cholesterol, and blood pressure. Some studies recommend that blueberries have the highest amount of antioxidants in all fruits. There is also a study conducted in test-tube and animals that shown antioxidants present in blueberries can delay the decline in brain function.
2. Dark Chocolate
When you heard chocolate the first thing that comes in your mind is a sweet treat. However, there is a type of chocolate that is antioxidant rich foods. Dark chocolate is known to have very high antioxidant content. According to FRAP analysis, in every 100 grams of dark chocolate, there is 15 mmol of antioxidants. As compared to blueberries, it is more likely to have a higher amount of antioxidants.
Antioxidants that are present in cocoa have impressive health benefits like reducing the risk factor of heart diseases and less inflammation. Eating dark chocolates can reduce systolic blood pressure by an average of 4.5 mmHg and diastolic blood pressure by an average of 2.5 mmHg. There is a study that shows that dark chocolate can reduce the risk of heart disease by raising antioxidants levels, raising the level of HDL or good cholesterol, and preventing bad cholesterol in the body.
Artichoke is classified as a vegetable. It is nutritious and very common among the North American diet. Artichokes are one of the foods high in antioxidants. According to FRAP analysis in every 100 grams of artichokes, it contains 4.7 mmol of antioxidants. The antioxidants found in artichoke are called chlorogenic acid. It can reduce the risk of certain cancers, heart disease, and type II diabetes. Boiled artichokes have eight times higher antioxidants content compared to fresh.
4. Goji Berries
Goji Berries is known as a superfood because it is rich in vitamins, minerals, and high in antioxidants. It is a dried fruit that is used traditionally in Chinese medicine for almost 2,000 years. Goji berries are foods high in antioxidants because in every 100 grams of it contains 4.3 mmol antioxidants. It contains Lycium barbarum polysaccharides, it is a type of antioxidant that can reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer. It also helps combat skin aging.
One of the great sources of antioxidants is vegetables especially green leafy vegetables. Kale is one of the many antioxidant rich foods. Aside from being high in antioxidants, it is also rich in Vitamin A, C, and K. It contains 2.7 mmol of antioxidants per 100 grams. The red varieties of Kale like redbor and red Russian contain twice the amount of antioxidant content compared to an ordinary Kale.
6. Red Cabbage
Red Cabbage or also known as purple cabbage has an impressive nutrient profile. Red cabbage also contains Vitamin C, K, and A which is important in maintaining a healthy body. Base on the FRAP analysis, in every 100 grams of red cabbage it contains 2.2 mmol of antioxidants. The antioxidants present in red cabbage are called anthocyanins that give red cabbage its color. Anthocyanins can reduce the risk of certain cancers and inflammation, and protect against heart disease.