Antioxidant health drinks are the newest rage in the nutritional products world. Everywhere you look there are countless choices of mediocre products that it becomes very confusing. It is important to know exactly what you are looking for when choosing the best product
Let’s begin with understanding what exactly an antioxidant is. During cellular metabolism there are byproducts that are resultant in the same fashion as a car emits exhaust. This auto exhaust is damaging to its environment as are the left over free radical components are to their environment (the body) by damaging the cells walls and possibly corrupting the DNA. The damage done to the cell wall can lead to cellular death, or even worse, cellular DNA damage.
Let’s pretend, for example, that the continuous cell renewal process of creating 300 billion new cells every day to replace dying cells is akin to building a home. One day the blueprints that are lying on the desk has coffee spilled on them by one of the contractors. The following week the general contractor notices that the garage door was installed on the roof. His inquiry with the door company yields the explanation of, “well, that is where the blueprints indicated to put the door”.
The human body is the same way except the corrupted blue prints lead to abnormal cells that, through replication, spin out of proliferate at a speed that results in cancer. Free radical damage also leads to the inflammation that is responsible for (according to Time Magazine, Feb, 2005) Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, arthritis, heart disease, and many other maladies.
Antioxidants have properties that eradicate these free radicals. The magnitude of free radical damage in our day is one pass of a bus on a city street while you are breathing emits more free radicals into your lungs than your ancestors experienced in an entire lifetime. And that is why antioxidants are critically important to our health.
There are bizarre antioxidant claims made by antioxidant health drink companies than don’t measure up. One of the newest gimmick companies in the marketplace touts their chocolate drink as an antioxidant. This is lunacy considering the damaging effects of all the sugar that may lead to insulin resistance or Type II diabetes. Another makes a claim that the Acai berry, discovered in Brazil and marketed in an expensive bottle, is a totally complete antioxidant source with wicked healing powers. It is important to know that, because of the evolutionary nature of the human DNA, the antioxidant compounds that exist in nature are from a wide variety of foods and accomplish differnt things.
Blueberries, for example, contain an antioxidant that has been scientifically proven to be the most powerful brain protector of any known food at this time. Pomegranate has known antioxidant properties that positively impact cardiac blood flow, prostate protection, and erectile dysfunction.
When we are talking in terms of fruit juice as an antioxidant health drink there is a downside to them. The challenge is that the removal of the pulp from the fruit eliminates the barriers that slows sugar absorption into the bloodstream, thereby, allowing insulin spikes to happen. When choosing an antioxidant health drink you need to be sure to evaluate the ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) factor. The USDA claims that 7000 ORAC units, daily, are necessary just to keep cancer at bay. The basic American diet yields approximately 1700. It is, therefore, crucial to remember to ingest the proper food and/or an antioxidant health drink everyday to minimize the damage.
The best overall purchase is a well rounded product that consists of many different antioxidant sources from herbs, berries, and other known natural foods.