Why We Need Antioxidants
The body is constantly changing. Some ways are good and some ways are not so good. You cannot see it happening, but your body is constantly going through oxidative reactions. Oxidation occurs when a free radical takes an electron from a molecule. Electron balance and electron exchanges are crucial to the functions of the cells and disruption can drastically change many dynamics in the body. When even one electron gets taken by a free radical, the molecule is changed and functions differently.
During normal bodily processes the body will produce these free radicals as a result of the oxidation that naturally occurs. Your body naturally makes antioxidants to counteract these radicals by chemically reducing them, but, in an ironic turn, these natural antioxidants themselves become oxidized and require an antioxidant from your diet to restore them. But what happens when there are more free radical than antioxidants in your body?
When there are more free radicals than antioxidants your body goes into oxidative stress. As we have said here before- the problem with stress is not the stressor, it’s the failure to adapt to the stressor.  The failure to recover from stress is the disorder we describe as stress these oxidation/reduction processes seem to be at the heart of it.
Oxidation is not always bad as your immune system will use free radicals to help heal an injury or fight off an infection, but oxidative stress describes the disrupted homeostasis that is unchecked oxidation.
This oxidative stress can be bad for the body when your body stays in this state for too long. A lack of quality antioxidants can force your body into an oxidative stressed state for prolonged periods of time resulting in an acceleration of the aging process and may contribute to a number of health conditions including cancer.
Lack of antioxidants are not the only thing that can lead to your body staying in the oxidative stressed state. Diet, lifestyle, smoking, pollution, radiation and other health conditions can contribute to an increased number of free radicals.
Different Types of Antioxidants
There are many antioxidants and they work in different ways. This is why you are supposed to be ingesting numerous vitamins on a daily basis. Among the ways we can look at them, and arrive at some understanding is to consider the environments in which antioxidants work. Water soluble vs fat soluble are two clear distinctions that separate different antioxidants. Water soluble antioxidants work to get rid of the free radicals in your cells or in bodily fluid while fat soluble antioxidants work to prevent damage to your cell membranes and DNA.
We have found the power paks to be a great source of a water-soluble antioxidant. Vitamin C gets absorbed through the intestine. By ingesting a high-quality powdered form in water, it increases the amount of vitamin C that your body will ingest.
A great fat-soluble antioxidant is vitamin E. You can find vitamin E as a supplement or you can mindfully choose foods that are high with vitamin E.
Making sure you are getting enough antioxidants in your diet can help prevent your body from being negatively impacted by these oxidizing free radicals. Numerous studies show that your body handles antioxidants from your food much better than supplements.
- Hans Selye, “Stress and the General Adaptation Syndrome”, NCBI, British Medical Journal, 6/17/1950, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2038162/pdf/brmedj03603-0003.pdf