Before we look at the list of antioxidant-rich foods, let’s see what the definition of an antioxidant is. Antioxidants are compounds found in foods such as fruits and vegetables whose function is to delay or even prevent cell damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are irregular atoms that are said to be chemicals that damage body cells.
But with the antioxidants we eat from antioxidant sources, we can prevent cell damage. This is good for maintaining the stability of our health. Now, after we know about antioxidants, it seems we really want to consume foods rich in these compounds.
Cell damage is the result of free radicals that enter our body. This can come from food exposed to chemicals, air pollution, water and so on. When free radicals enter the body, they cause oxidative stress. Oxidative stress can lead to heart disease, cancer, and other dangerous health problems.
However, by consuming antioxidant-rich foods, we can delay the damage to body cells or even prevent it. So important anrioxidant foods are for our health, it is only natural that we must list them.
Foods that contain a lot of antioxidants, but vary from one another. Here we have compiled a list of the healthiest antioxidant foods. So, not only from the perspective of antioxidants, but also from the content of other nutrients that make this food healthy enough to eat.
List of Antioxidant-Rich Foods
Blue berries are one type of antioxidant-rich foods. This fruit is famous for its high nutrition and low calories, so it is classified as a healthy fruit. But what we notice here is its high antioxidant content. Research shows that giving blueberries to animals has shown remarkable medicinal effects related to neurologic and aging.
Consuming blueberries is known to have become a drug in preventing premature aging, preventing damage to body cells thanks to the high levels of antioxidants.
Substances in fruit known as antioxidants are anthocyanins. It has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant effects thereby preventing oxidative stress in the blood. Anthocyanins are responsible for giving the fruit its bright color.
Another finding that is considered very impressive about the benefits of this antioxidant is where anthocyanins are said to prevent the rise of LDL or bad cholesterol, and reduce the risk of high blood pressure. Blueberries are one of the fruits that need to be consumed regularly or as a regular food either as a daily or weekly meal.
Artichokes are flower-shaped vegetables that are rich in nutrients and high in antioxidants.
According to research shows that consuming artichokes is useful in lowering the level of bad cholesterol and can improve and improve gut health.
Another study said that consuming artichokes when managing a disease provides many benefits. It is said that consuming artichokes regularly is good for improving liver, heart and gut health.
Laboratory studies show that the chemicals in artichokes are high in antioxidants and are useful in lowering LDL (low density lipo-protein).
We often prepare artichokes in a variety of ways. But you need to know that the antioxidant value will vary according to the way you cook.
In one study, researchers cooked artichokes in three ways: Boiling, steaming and frying them. Then note the highest antioxidant levels of them. The results show that steaming artichokes can increase the effectiveness of antioxidants by up to 15 times. While boiling it makes antioxidants decrease so that the level of effectiveness becomes 8 times.
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It is said that boiling artichokes and steaming them causes division or breakdown of cell walls so that and this makes the antioxidants easily accessible so that the antioxidant content becomes more.
3. Dark chocolate
Dark chocolate is a delicious food and a favorite of children. This black food is rich in antioxidants level and consuming dark chocolate has been associated with various health benefits, including:
- Reduce inflammation
- Reduce the risk of heart disease
- Increase good cholesterol
- Reduce the risk of high blood pressure
So, there is nothing to be afraid of from this food, but we still have to consume dark chocolate in moderation.
Regarding the health benefits of dark chocolate, several studies (10 studies) have involved 300 participants. Where those who consume dark chocolate regularly are said to be good for blood health because it lowers upper and lower blood pressure.
But it is not yet known how much dark chocolate should be eaten every day. It is the duty of health scientists to continue to improve and explore this knowledge. However, the old advice holds, eat moderate amounts of food, whether it’s nutrient-rich or not.
This is a safe way because we don’t know exactly how much of a particular food we should be eating each day. This is also related to the consumption of various types of food every day with different nutritional content.
Another antioxidants-rich food is strawberries. It contains many vitamins and minerals. It also includes fruit containing anthocyanins which act as antioxidants. The bright red color of the strawberries is a result of these ingredients.
In a study reported that anthocyanins are useful in reducing levels of bad cholesterol in the blood. Well, by being able to reduce cholesterol levels, eating strawberries is important for preventing heart disease. The cause of heart disease is excessive bad cholesterol in the bloodstream which causes blockage of blood flow.
Eating strawberries is very easy, you can eat them directly or by chopping them into part of your salad.
Pecans are another healthy food that is rich in antioxidants. It is a very important spice or cooking ingredient in Asian kitchens. This spice offers calories, healthy fats, antioxidants and minerals.
The good news is, when a person consumes pecans, the antioxidant content can be absorbed in the body and levels can increase in the blood.
When levels of this antioxidant enter the blood, it will reduce levels of oxidized blood LDL. So, eating pecans has great health benefits in lowering the risk of heart disease. Increasing antioxidant-rich foods including pecans is the best way to take care of the body and prevent various bad things in the future.
6. Red cabbage
Red cabbage is also included in the list of antioxidant-rich foods. Not only does it contain antioxidants but red cabbage is also famous for vitamins A, C, K, and various other nutrients.
These are said to be similar to red kale, strawberries in that they contain anthocyanins which give them their bright color. These antioxidants play a role in many ways in removing free radicals from the body.
The antioxidant benefits of anthocyanins can promote heart health, reduce inflammation and prevent cancer. Among the health benefits of red cabbage are:
- As anti-cancer
- As an anti-inflammatory
- Managing diabetes
- Prevent heart disease
- Promotes good weight.
However, we still need more research on this red cabbage, we need to know how it affects health and what about the possible side effects.
How to consume red cabbage is the same as other cabbage, you can add it to salads, or cook as usual.
Beans are a great source of vegetable protein and fiber. In addition, these beans also contain antioxidants, especially pinto beans.
Pinto Beans are said to contain Kaemplherol or known as flavonoids and this is a form of antioxidant in beans. This type of antioxidant can suppress cancer cells, and reduce inflammation, either arthritis or inflammation in the body. Kaemplherol is also said to suppress cancer cells, including:
- breast cancer
Researchers don’t know much about how kaempherol affects humans. So far, researchers have only completed research on the effects of kaempherol in animals, while in humans there have been no studies.
Beans are rich in various nutrients and antioxidants, so it’s time we include these foods in our daily diet list.
The raspberries are similar to strawberries and blueberries, in that they are foods high in antioxidants. Raspberries also contain minerals such as manganese, dietary fiber and vitamin C.
The antioxidants in raspberries are effective in destroying cancer cells. So, we must be diligent in eating this antioxidant-rich fruit in maintaining a healthy body.
There are studies that say that in the case of certain cancers such as breast, stomach and colon cancer, in test-tube studies show that these antioxidants can destroy cancer cells.
There is also another study that made research on black raspberries, where the extract from this fruit was effective in destroying tumors.
Most of the research done has always involved test tubes and has not been done on humans. So, to be able to know clearly “how it affects humans”, then research on raspberries on the human body must be done.
9. Purple or red grapes
Grapes have long been known as a healthy food that is important for overall health. It turns out that the positive impact of grapes is thanks to the presence of antioxidants. High-antioxidant grapes are types of red and purple grapes.
They contain vitamin C, selenium, and are high in antioxidants. Not just one type of antioxidant. Purple and red grapes contain antioxidants anthocyanins and proanthocyanins. Both are very useful for health in maintaining heart health and avoiding cancer.
10. Spinach (green vegetables)
Spinach is a green vegetable that has long been known to be good and healthy to eat. Even more this is include as one of the tasty and healthy food for lowering cholesterol. However, if you want to get a lot of nutrients from spinach leaves, buy spinach that is free of chemicals, spinach that is not sprayed with chemicals.
As an alternative, you can grow your own spinach in polybags or next to your house. This will be a source of important nutrients, especially its antioxidant content and is very useful for you and your family.
There are different types of antioxidants in this green vegetable, both of which are:
Zeaxanthin and lutein and in charge of maintaining eye health. This substance prevents eye damage caused by UV rays or light.
There are many studies that say that the vitamins in spinach can prevent macular degeneration. Beside this antioxidant-rich foods, you also may to consume other antioxidants foods like green vegetables, eggs and pistachios.
Kale also includes green vegetables, it is a vegetable that is a source of vitamins C, A, and K. This unique vegetable is also rich in several types of antioxidants.
There are two species of kale, red and green. Red kale has more antioxidants than green kale. This is because red kale contains anthocyanins.
So, red kale vs green kale is better? If you have to choose, then choose the red type because it is richer and varied in terms of antioxidants. Anthocyanins are important antioxidants, not only against disease but also in giving color to vegetables.
The kale is easy to prepare, you can consume this veg bay cook as vegetables or making salads. If you buy kale on a big amount, you can freeze it in the freezer as well. If you freeze kale, its can last long for 6 months as a fresh vegetable.
Beets contain antioxidants that called betalains. This antioxidant-rich food are useful in preventing colon cancer, and preventing problems with digestion.
In addition, beets also include foods with nutrients such as iron, folate, and potassium. They are important substances in suppressing inflammation. So, when someone has a fever, beets can be a good natural remedy against fever (caused by inflammation).
There is also research that says that betalains compounds in beets are also useful for preventing certain cancer cells. However, this should be done further research to support scientific assumptions.
You can eat beets directly as vegetable or eat it as roast beets.