With so much talk about antioxidants and how great they are, many of us are left wondering how we can get these wonderful compounds in our bodies. I found this helpful table in the September 2008 issue of Today’s Dietitian magazine.
Found in: Orange and yellow fruits and vegetables such as carrots and cantaloupe; dark leafy greens such as spinach and kale
Benefits: Beta-carotene was long believed to help prevent cataracts, although today the research appears to be more conflicted, and scientists say more research is needed.
Found in: Leafy greens such as spinach; corn, carrots, and squash
Benefits: Research indicates that lutein may help lower the risk of developing cataracts and macular degeneration.
Found in: Red, fleshy fruits and vegetables such as watermelon and tomatoes
Benefits: Diets rich in lycopene may help protect against heart disease.
Found in: Seafood, lean meats, and whole grains
Benefits: Research often suggests that selenium may have a preventive effect against cancer.
– Vitamin A
Found in: Animal sources such as eggs, meat, and dairy
Benefits: Research indicates that vitamin A promotes clear and healthy vision. It also helps form and maintain healthy teeth, skeletal, and soft tissue and skin.
– Vitamin C
Found in: Citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruit; bell peppers and broccoli
Benefits: Among its many functions, vitamin C can aid tissue growth and repair, adrenal gland function, and wound repair. It may also help cure or prevent colds by boosting the immune system.
– Vitamin E
Found in: Wheat germ, nuts (i.e. almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts), and monounsaturated oils (i.e. sunflower oil)
Benefits: Preliminary research has led to a widely held belief that vitamin E may help prevent or delay coronary artery disease.