Antioxidants are organic chemicals that act to protect cells from damage caused by free radicals. These free radicals can be triggered by the metabolic processes of the body or as a result of exposure to environmental hazards.
Although your body can produce some antioxidants by itself, it also uses the antioxidants in food you consume to fight free radicals. Therefore, it is important to eat a healthy diet to provide your body with the additional antioxidants it needs.
Good sources of antioxidants include; berries, apples, avocados, cherries and pears, artichokes, spinach, sweet potatoes and broccoli. Nuts, herbs and oat-based grains are also good sources of antioxidants. While eating a diet that includes plenty of vegetables, fruits and whole grain foods provides your body with antioxidants, it also offers many other nutrients essential in preventing chronic diseases.
Common antioxidants are vitamins A, C, E, and beta carotene. These essential vitamins assist in skin repair and the strengthening of blood vessels, and are important for keeping skin healthy and youthful.