The Truth You Didn't Know About Antioxidants

Posted by Mike Miryala on


Sumeet: Can you talk a little bit about antioxidants? What is the role of antioxidants in our body? Like we keep on hearing about vitamin C is really good, has a lot of antioxidants. Recently I came across this Astaxanthin. It has 10-20 times more antioxidants than vitamin C. So, I was curious exactly what is antioxidant that we keep hearing about?

Edward: Well yeah, antioxidants. In our bodies when you're breathing, you're taking in oxygen and oxygen you know it's super important for us that's why we're here. However in our body, the oxidation, oxidative processes, they tend to cause damage to tissues. They tend to cause some problems that come with the benefit of having it here. Antioxidants, what they do is they actually occupy and take away or rub away or protect the tissues, the several tissues from oxidative degeneration. 

So, problems that you get with oxidative degeneration is that damage to tissues like the kidneys, like the arteries and so many others, liver, you name it. So when you are taking antioxidants, you're actually taking shields in a way to see it. Shields to those organ targets so they can actually continue to function the way they are intended but yet at the same time be protective for the normal processes in your body and oxidation is one of them. So the more antioxidants that you take, the more ways to protect your tissues and that encompasses pretty much every single organ and Sam was talking about the eyes for example. I still kind of try not to use my glasses only if it's absolutely necessary and maybe the quantity and the quality of nutrition that you're getting has to do with the prevalence of certain conditions. 

So in this particular case, going back to the topic, if you take antioxidants you are actually doing proactively something important which is protecting your body, your organs, your systems in the long run and that's why I think it's important to always try to include antioxidants in pretty much everything that you do. 

Sumeet:  Interesting. So basically, it's the way I think about oxidation is like every time I think about oxidation right is you look at rusting right, like you have very simple example since you grew up as a child that hey you leave this iron this metal out and it oxidizes that means it rusts. So it's kind of similar but it happens inside our body. So to protect that, you take antioxidants which can actually shield as you said your organs. Correct? 

Edward: Yes. Yeah that's a nice way to put it, yes it's a good idea. 

Sumeet:  Good, this is excellent. I have one more question on this same topic and this is for Sam. Sam, you brought up this healthy fat point. I know I'm curious, when you say healthy fat, what exactly does it mean like for you know regular people who are listening to this? 

Sam: Right. Yeah so I think the word Fats can be very scary to people. There are healthy fats and unhealthy fats. And so healthy fats basically are the fats that come from foods that are naturally occurring. So avocados as I said before is a super great healthy fat. 

So to break down fats a little bit more, we have unsaturated fats, saturated fats, polyunsaturated fats. So when you're thinking about a healthy fat, you will look on the label and you see unsaturated fats and then you see saturated fats. So, we want to be having unsaturated fats and those are the fats that are predominantly found in foods from plants. And so yeah going back then to avocado, we have olive oil is a great fat. When you think about nuts, nuts have a lot of healthy fats and like seeds like flax seeds. Then you'll see like flaxseed oil. These are all great ways to incorporate healthy fats into your diet as well as like fish

Certain types of proteins but also thinking about certain types of proteins there are healthy and unhealthy fats in different proteins. So when you hear like lean protein, lean meat, that's essentially talking about the fat content and the types of fats that are in those meats. So, red meat leans on the unhealthy fat spectrum. Red meat does have benefits to it and it contains like a lot of B vitamins that are hard for people who are like focused on a vegetarian diet or a vegan diet to get. But, also with red meat comes with the unhealthy fats. 

So, there's you know there's pros and cons to most foods that we eat - not most foods, but there are pros and cons to definitely protein foods for sure. But it is essential for us to have healthy fats in our diet.



If you missed Samantha and Edward's discussion on Ozempic and Eat The Rainbow (Part 3 - Green), you can still watch the full episode here  -->