Monday, September 7, 2009

ANTIOXIDANTS

Antioxidants are the molecules which prevent oxidation of other molecules.These are generally reducing agents like Theol or polyphenols.Oxidative stress in the body produces free radicals which cause irreparable damage to the body systems and may in turn result in cancer, heart diseases,Alzheimer disease, Perkinsons disease,diabetes etc.Antioxidants prevent the formation of free radicals and thereby prevents numerous diseases.

Antioxidants are of two types-lipid soluble( prevents per oxidation of cell membranes) and water soluble( reacts with oxidative agents in plasma or cytoplasm).Vit C (ascorbic acid),Vit E(alfa tocopherol), Glutathione, melatonin are some of the important antioxidants.However strong reducing agents like tannin or oxalic acid bind to dietary Fe or Zn and causes nutritional imbalance.

Antioxidants have other uses as well, namely
  • As supplement after exercise
  • Food preservation
  • Lubricant and cosmetics

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