We all have heard that certain botanicals, herbs, etc., are antioxidant in their actions, but what actually are antioxidants?
As the name implies, antioxidants are substances that are capable of counteracting the damaging, but normal, effects of the physiological process of oxidation in animal tissue. Antioxidants are nutrients (vitamins and minerals) as well as enzymes (proteins in your body that assist in chemical reactions). They are believed to play a role in preventing the development of such chronic diseases as cancer, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and cataracts. Oxidative stress occurs when the production of harmful molecules called free radicals is beyond the protective capability of the antioxidant defenses. Here is an article that gives great detail on antioxidants and some suggestions for them; but beyond these recommendations there are some botanicals in the news lately that may be extremely valuable, especially when combined to combat oxidative stress.