Oxidative stress is not talked about very much but is such an important concept to understand and grasp if you want to fight inflammation, aging, pain, and all sorts of chronic diseases.
Oxidative stress is the process of your body generating and accumulating excess free radicals which causes inflammation and chronic diseases such as heart, lung, cancer and the like.
How does the body generate free radicals? Believe it or not, It is part of normal metabolism. Your body generate free radicals to kill off virus and foreign attackers. But when there's too many free radicals, it causes inflammation and troubles.
Our bodies are made of billions of molecular molecules, held together by electronic bonds. When these molecular bonds are weak, and can be broken apart. When that happens, molecules lose an electron and become very unstable and very reactive - free radicals. The process in which free radicals are formed when molecules lose it's electrons called oxidation. Free radicals attack neighboring molecules, steal their electrons to become stable. Once they steal an electron from neighboring molecules, it becomes stable and non-reactive. However, this process creates a very rapid dominoes effect. One FR begets 2, and 2 begets 4, and so forth. This can be seen in how quickly a cut apple oxidize and decays away.
Sources that cause free radicals formation:
1. cigarette smoking
2. environmental toxins - municipal water, heavy metals, hormones & antibiotics in meat and dairy products, household cleaning chemicals
3. stress of life
6. radiations - x-rays from dental, medical, mammograms, airports, EMF (electromagnetic frequency)
7. Herbicides & pesticides
8. Lack of sleep
9. Lack of exercise
The opposite of oxidation is anti-oxidation. And we take or eat anti-oxidants foods to combat this process. Anti-oxidants do not become free radicals once they donated their electron because they are stable in either form. They act as scavengers, preventing cell and tissue damage.
Different foods has different anti-oxidant capacity to neutralize free radicals. Scientist call this 'oxygen radical absorbance capacity' or ORAC values, developed by the National Institute on Aging in the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Some examples of ORAC values are:
Gr. Cloves - 290K
Dried Oregano - 175K
Gr. Cinnamon - 131K
Plums - 6100
Blueberries, raw- 4669
Brocolli, boiled - 2150
Banana - 260
Limes - 82
How to combat oxidative stress and inflammation?
1. Diet - eat as much as you are able to afford in organic fruits and vegetables; grass-fed beef, organic and free-range chicken, eggs, and pork. Food high in omega-3 animal and plant fats. Eat anti-oxidant foods high in ORAC values for best nutrition here.
Top 20 common foods with high anti-oxidants:
|Rank||Food item||Serving size||Total antioxidant capacity
per serving size
|1||Small Red Bean (dried)||Half cup||13,727|
|2||Wild blueberry||1 cup||13,427|
|3||Red kidney bean (dried)||Half cup||13,259|
|4||Pinto bean||Half cup||11,864|
|5||Blueberry (cultivated)||1 cup||9,019|
|6||Cranberry||1 cup (whole)||8,983|
|7||Artichoke (cooked)||1 cup (hearts)||7,904|
|12||Red Delicious apple||1 whole||5,900|
|13||Granny Smith apple||1 whole||5,381|
|15||Sweet cherry||1 cup||4,873|
|16||Black plum||1 whole||4,844|
|17||Russet potato (cooked)||1 whole||4,649|
|18||Black bean (dried)||Half cup||4,181|
|20||Gala apple||1 whole||3,903|
2. Exercise - 30 minutes of aerobic exercises five times a week.
3. Supplements - choose organic whenever you can.
- Water soluable vitamins - All B vitamins (niacin, riboflavin, thiamin, B6, B12, folate, pantothenic acid, and biotin) & vitamin C, astaxanthine.
- Fat soluable vitamins - omega-3 (EFA, DHA, ALA), Vitamin A, Vitamin D3, Vitamin E, and Vitamin K.
- Ground cinnamon and tumeric, dried oregano and rosemary
4. Energy medicine - grounding/earthing mat here.
5. Anti-oxidant water (alkaline water) - very reasonable-priced alkaline water pitcher here.
By eliminating as much as possible, sources of free radicals from these areas, you can then reduce inflammation, and reduces your sources of pain and slow down the aging process.
Oxidative Stress is the process of free radical formation. Oxidative stress causes inflammation and aging. It is crucial to eat foods that gives you the most anti-oxidant value to maximize the effect.
Click here for a brief video (or see below) that give you a simple explaination of how oxidative stress occurs.
Antioxidant values of food sort by alphabetical or ORAC values: http://www.oracvalues.com/sort/food/40