Have you been involved in any good paradoxical dilemmas lately?
Here is one: Your body produces free radicals when it metabolizes food. Like the exhaust from a car’s tailpipe, free radicals indicate you are in fact alive—that your motor is running.
BUT free radicals may also someday kill you.
Free radicals are considered by many researchers to be the primary cause of the signs of aging (wrinkled skin, sun spots, etc.), and the damage they inflict can create changes in your cellular structure that may lead to heart disease, arthritis, diabetes and some types of cancer.
Even Houdini couldn’t get out of the free radical trap. You can’t live with them—and you can’t live without them.
What can you do?
Since there is no way to avoid free radicals altogether, the challenge is to lessen them. The amount of damage they can cause is directly related to their numbers. Thankfully, nature has provided a solution to the dilemma—a means of keeping the chain reactions caused by free radicals under control: Antioxidants.
Antioxidants are the key. They stop the free radical free-for-all. They are by no means the Fountain of Youth or a miracle cure—but they can significantly limit or prevent the damage to your body caused by free radicals. Antioxidants, my friend, are good for you.
So, where do you get antioxidants?
Nature intended for you to source antioxidants from the food you eat. They come in the form of vitamins (like A, C, and E) or as minerals (selenium and zinc are examples).
Unfortunately, “modern” farming methods have severely impacted our agricultural topsoil. It is no longer prudent to assume you will get the nutrition you need from the fruits and vegetables you buy at the supermarket. Numerous studies have shown commercial food crops to be seriously lower in nutritional value than the produce available just a generation or two ago.
The best solution is to grow your own organic food—or to source it from a local farmer. Most of us need help, though. That is why the 21st century has ushered in a new reality: vitamin and mineral supplements have become a necessity for most of us.
In a world where grocery stores have replaced backyard gardens, and foods look beautiful—but pack few nutrients—we must do more than just eat the right kinds of foods in order to maintain optimal health. Barring an abundant access to nutrient-rich organic foods, it is important to supplement your diet with effective vitamin and mineral supplements.
Be wise in your choices, though. There may be a photo of a healthy, smiling woman on the label—but that is no indication of whether or not the pills inside will actually deliver the goods.
Don’t base your decision on price, but on quality. It is important to find and use a brand that focuses on making the vitamins and minerals available to (and absorbable by) your system.
And for getting essential amounts of antioxidants, that means a brand that utilizes advanced techniques (oligofructose complex technology, for instance).
Finding and getting the right foods and supplements isn’t easy—but it can be done. Do the research. Find foods and supplements that do what they should do. Your body will thank you for it.