Free radicals are one of the pivotal reasons behind the advent of cancer in the body. It goes without saying that if you have been struggling around with the same, there are some of the best ways to fight free radical damage caused to the body.
Not just foods, but even the salient changes to one’s lifestyle can come in handy when it comes down to handling the condition associated with the heightened presence of free radicals in the body. It is not just important to identify the sources of free radicals but also find ways to combat them for good.
By the end of this article, you will have a fair idea about how to fight free radical damage in the body without any issues whatsoever.
Table of Content
What are Free Radicals in the Body?
In order for you to understand and know the basics of what free radical is, it is important for you to dive back into the elementary chemistry to get a better idea.
You must know that the atoms are surrounded by electrons that do orbit the atom in layers known as the shells. It is important for each shell to be filled in by the necessary number of electrons for it to move on to the next shell.
If by any chance, the outer shell of an atom is not completely paired with electrons, chances are that it might end up bonding with other atoms to complete its outer shell electron requirements. These types of atoms are what we call the free radicals.
The main problem with such atoms is the fact that the ones which lack proper electron count in the outermost shell are unstable. Because of the fact that they don’t have paired electrons in the outermost shell, there remains an affinity for the same to react with anything inside the body, thus causing harm in the long run.
Why are Free Radicals Bad?
Why are free radicals bad for you? This is a very frequently asked question.
As mentioned before, free radicals do have the potency of harming the healthy cells in the body, mainly because of the fact that they react with anything and everything.
There are a number of causes of free radicals but before knowing about them, it is important one has a basic idea of why these are actually bad for the body in the long run.
Free radicals are mainly the byproducts of the oxygen metabolism of the body. When it comes to discussing the side effects, the possibilities are quite extensive, for that matter.
Some of the reasons why it is believed to be of harm to the body are mainly because of the following reasons:
As mentioned before, the free radicals are bound around mainly because of the lack of stability. Oxidative stress has been found to have negative impacts on the body, mainly because the same affects the healthy cells and tissues in the body.
Many people have this notion that free radicals are bad for the body – the truth is, it is not.
It becomes harmful the moment the levels of this cross the normal levels in the body altogether. Free radicals are the natural byproducts of oxygen metabolism but overdoing the causes and reasons behind it is what ends up causing the problem altogether.
Major Chronic Diseases
Yet another one of the common issues that is often caused because of the free radical damage in the body is the induction of the certain chronic diseases that do end up being a problem for your overall well being.
While cancer is one of the most common risks associated with this disease, chances are that there could very well be a number of other conditions that you could end up struggling with. Apart from this deadly disease, some of the other chronic diseases that many people often tend to struggle and complain about include the conditions like diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, several diseases related to one’s central nervous system like Alzheimer’s and dementia.
Studies have also found impacts of free radicals in the induction of several genetic degenerative diseases much like Huntington’s disease or even Parkinson’s.
Types of Free Radicals
When it does come down to explaining the types of free radicals, the possibilities are quite extensive. Given the fact that there are multiple outcomes for the metabolism of the oxygen in the body, there are varying types of free radicals (R) that are often found to be produced in the body.
- Superoxide Ion Radical ( O 2 ∙ – )
- Hydroxyl Radical (OH∙)
- Peroxyl Radical (ROO∙)
- Hydrogen Peroxide (H2O2)
- Singlet Oxygen (1O2)
- Ozone (O3)
- Hypochlorous Acid (HOCl)
- Nitric Oxide or Nitrogen Monoxide (NO•)
What Causes Free Radicals?
There are a number of causes and sources of free radicals that we knowingly and unknowingly end up combating with. It actually has been found that it is not just the diet but even the lifestyle we adhere to that plays a crucial role in making the condition worse than before.
Free radicals are produced in our body naturally; the issue does become worse when we end up exposing ourselves to condition and attributes that play a contributing role in the condition of excess production of free radicals in our body.
Some of the common causes of free radicals production in our body include:
- Smoking excessively
- Drinking alcohol
- Exposure to some of the toxic chemicals in the body
- Consumption of excess fried food
These kinds of lifestyle changes and factors have also been found to play a very crucial role when it does come down to the condition of cancer and even a number of cardiovascular diseases. These are the factors does end up being the factors contributing to the heightened oxidative stress in the body.
How to Reduce Free Radicals in the Body?
As mentioned before, the problem with free radicals arises the moment the levels of the free radicals in the body surpass the normal levels.
There are a number of ways in which one can get rid of free radicals. In here, we are going to be sharing some of the effective ways in which one can handle the problems caused by this in an effective way.
Before we proceed along, it is important one knows about antioxidants because those are the ones that do help in getting rid of the free radicals without inflicting any kind of negative impacts on the body.
Check Out These Amazing Ways to Fight Free Radical Damage.
That being said, it also does go without saying that it is always best to derive these antioxidants from natural sources instead of relying on the unnecessary supplements around.
In here, we are going to help combat and eliminate free radicals from the body with the help of food.
1. Avoid Refined Carbs
We are all so caught up with our lives, trying to keep it in check that we do end up forgetting about the foods that does have negative impacts on the body, especially when it comes to generating free radicals in the body.
Refined carbs are one of the most common examples when it comes to the generating high amount of free radicals in the body. Not just that, even the foods that have a high glycemic range does impose harm on one’s health, increasing the risks associated with the free radical damage in the body.
2. Consume More Broccoli
When it comes to the best ways to fight free radical damage in the body, the superfoods do come into play. Superfoods are rich in healthy antioxidants which have been found to have amazing impacts in helping get rid of the excess levels of free radicals in the body.
Broccoli is considered to be one of the very best options when it comes down to the foods that get rid of free radicals. It is the presence of the antioxidant sulforaphane in the broccoli which has been found to have beneficial impacts in handling the condition associated with excess free radicals in the body.
Not just that, the presence of fiber in the broccoli further help get rid of the problems that one face because of the irregular bowel movements.
3. Consume More Whole Cereals
As we did mention before, even though the refined carbs and the foods with high glycemic index are bad for the body, the consumption of whole cereal is most definitely something you won’t have to regret later in life.
That being said, you’d be surprised to know that the consumption of whole cereal bring down and helps in the treatment for free radicals’ expulsion out of the body.
Some of the researchers from the Nagasaki University did find that the antioxidants which are found in the whole grains, especially rich in Vitamin B and E. Apart from that, it is also rich in a varying number of carotenoids and minerals which further make it a better option in comparison to the other variants.
4. Limit the Consumption of Processed Meats
As much as sausages and other processed meats might seem nice, it is not necessarily the very best option when it comes to your overall health, especially if you are trying to watch out for the levels of free radicals in the body.
Processed and preserved meats (R) and such are not just loaded with excess sodium, it has also been found to have impacts when it comes to the levels of free radicals in the body.
Apart from that, it has been found that the presence of the preservatives in these meats are also often the contributing factor that makes the levels of the free radicals in the body worse than it should be.
Yet another one the foods that reduce free radicals in the body include apricots. This is one of those fruits which is often ignored or not paid much attention to even though the impact it has on one’s body is immense.
You’d actually be very surprised to know this for a fact that apricots are loaded with antioxidants, Vitamin A as well as Vitamin C, all of which have amazing impacts in regulating the levels of free radicals in the body. It is Lycopene which is the most contributing factor in getting rid of the free radical damage in the body.
Be very careful with how much you are consuming though. Ensure that it is the fresh fruit variant and not the dried version because the same is not necessarily the ideal option for diabetic patients, especially because of the high glycemic index in it.
Consuming pulses with the peel on has actually been proven to be an amazing way to get rid of free radicals that are excess in the body.
The peel is the essential part because that is what is loaded with rich antioxidants polyphenols, saponins and even phytates which have beneficial anticancer properties.
The only thing that one needs to make sure of is to get the lentils and pulses cooked thoroughly and completely. Don’t end up consuming half cooked lentils because the same can further end up causing issues for your body.
7. Limit the Consumption of Red Meat
Red meat is yet another one of the factors that can amp up the production of free radicals in the body. The best way to combat that and get rid of it is by limiting the consumption of red meat altogether.
The main reason why even doctors suggest opting out of consuming red meat is mainly because of the fact that the same is more prone to undergo oxidation inside the body because of the presence of high levels of iron in it.
Raspberries are yet another one of the beneficial and the best ways to fight free radical damage in the body. Berries, in general, are very rich in antioxidants, which help in warding off the unprecedented levels of free radicals in the body.
Raspberries are loaded with Ellagitannin which is one of the most potent antioxidants that help in getting rid of the unwanted levels of free radicals in the body.
Not just that antioxidative (R) properties, raspberries also possess beneficial anti-inflammatory properties (R) which have further been found to have beneficial impacts in getting rid of the risks associated with the inflammatory diseases.
9. Raw Vegetable Oil
Studies have found that olive oil is rich in antioxidants which does have beneficial impacts in getting rid of the free radicals and even prevent oxidative stress in the body. Seed oils are also often considered as a good option for you to look into, if need be.
10. Keep a Check on the Alcohol
Drinking alcohol is often one of those factors that do have the potency to end up being a problem if you have an unmanageable amount of free radicals in your body. It does go without saying that alcoholic drinks are not just high on calories but also possess the potency to increase the production of free radicals in the body.
Instead of going ham with the drinks, try and ensure that you don’t go out of bound with the same because that is what ends up creating an issue altogether on your health.
Watermelon is yet another one of the best ways to fight free radical damage. Much like tomatoes and even apricots, even watermelon is loaded with one of the most beneficial antioxidants, lycopene.
Aside from the fresh bout of antioxidants, this is also one of those fruits which is loaded with all the beneficial vitamins and minerals that you get with each piece that you do consume. It is quite beneficial to not go ham with the consumption because the same does have the potency of doing worse than good.
The deep red watermelon is the one that is believed to be loaded with a good amount of lycopene in it which is definitely one of the factors that make it stand out of the crowd altogether. The water content of this fruit also ensures to help keep dehydration away, especially during the summer months.
12. Be on Point with the Cooking
More or even less cooking of a food item does have the potential to end up becoming a complete waste of time for you. In order to combat that, the best way to go about with the same is to ensure that you cook your food adequately.
Majority of the antioxidants that we derive from the natural sources tend to only showcase its optimal benefits when you cook them for the perfect amount of time. Instead of going overboard with the cooking, ensure that you are considerate of the cooking process and such.
If the guidelines suggest slight sear, do that. If the guidelines suggest blanching it, do that. It is all about how well you cook the food and the rest does fall into place altogether.
13. Opt for spices
Aside from being an amazing addition to the cooking regime, it is also often an amazing option for people who want to gain the benefits without having to fret about the consequences.
Spices are an all natural method to get rid of the excess free radicals in the body to effectively help the body heal and prevent the risks associated with oxidative stress.
Some of the best options for spices that do work effectively do include ginger, grape seed, rosemary and even turmeric (R).
For the easiest yet best impacts, try and integrate the same into your diet for effective results altogether.
Spinach is yet another one of the amazing foods that get rid of free radicals effectively. It is not just beneficial in warding off the oxidative stress altogether, it has also been found to have impacts in getting rid of the overwhelming presence of excess free radicals.
It is also loaded with high levels of protein and fibers which further helps get rid of the problems that one faces because of the improper digestion. The primary antioxidant which is found and is present in spinach is beta-carotene.
The versatility of the spinach is something that further relays the benefits altogether. If you want to keep your free radical damage to a bare minimum, this is actually a good enough option.
15. Opt for Red Wine
White wine is often the one that many do prefer but if you wish to experience the best of its impacts on your health, red wine is often considered the best option altogether.
Red wine is loaded with the amazing amount of antioxidants in it which has been found to have beneficial impacts in warding off the signs and symptoms that come along with the condition of free radical damage in the body.
16. Green Tea
Yet another one of the factors that helps eliminate free radicals from the body is with drinking green tea.
Green tea is loaded with beneficial polyphenols which have been found to have beneficial impacts in getting rid of the free radicals, mainly because of the presence of polyphenols and essential antioxidants in them.
What this does is help in combating the unnecessary condition of oxidative stress in the body effectively.
For the most part, the artichoke is an acquired taste and the majority of the people know and understand that. This specific vegetable has been found to have amazing impacts in getting rid of the excess free radicals and even helps prevent oxidative stress to keep the cells healthy and in the best condition.
The primary antioxidant that does work wonders for the body is with the presence of “Silymarin” which further helps get rid of the issues that you do face on a daily basis.
How to Prevent Free Radicals?
When it comes down on how one can prevent the production of excess free radicals in the body, the process isn’t that complicated, quite the contrary actually.
If you have a basic idea and knowledge of things around, you would very well know that preventing the excess production of free radicals in the body is often quite an easy task to achieve.
It all depends on the kind of lifestyle choices you make and the kind of diet you are consuming.
Some of the best ways to fight free radical damage and prevent the same includes:
- Consume foods rich in antioxidants
- Prevent yourself from being too into smoking and drinking alcohol
- Maintain an active lifestyle
- Abstain yourself from consuming too much fried and junk foods
When it comes to finding the best ways to fight free radical damage, the process isn’t that tough to achieve. All you need to do is make some changes in your own overall diet and lifestyle and the rest will readily fall into place. In here, we have mentioned the top 17 ways and foods to get rid of free radical damage effectively and we do hope that the same does help.