6 Antioxidants You Should Get Familiar With

6 Antioxidants You Should Get Familiar With

The word ‘antioxidant’ gets thrown around a lot these days but how are you supposed to know what antioxidants really do for your body, and which are better than others?

Think of antioxidants as anti-rust agents for your body. When you’re exposed to toxins like cigarette smoke, pesticides, poor quality foods, trans and hydrogenated fats and prolonged stress, the oxidation process creates free radicals, causing damage to the cells in your body.

The body can cope with some free radicals but if there’s too many, they can wreak havoc on your body and cause serious health problems. Heart disease, liver disease, deteriorated eye sight, arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s, accelerated aging and some cancers have all been linked to an overload of free radicals. 

While some antioxidants are produced by our bodies, our levels decrease as we age. The good news is there are plenty of great antioxidant sources that we can tap into. Some are found in certain foods, others can be supplemented, and they all help to neutralise free radicals. Well known antioxidants include vitamins A, C and E, and the minerals, zinc and selenium. Other dietary food compounds, such as the phytochemicals in plants are believed to have greater antioxidant effects than either vitamins or minerals.

These are the top 6 antioxidants: 

Glutathione is known as your body's most powerful antioxidant. Glutathione is found in every single cell in your body. It is called the "master antioxidant" because of its unique ability to maximise the performance of all the other antioxidants, including vitamins C and E, CoQ10 and the fresh vegetables and fruits that you eat every day.

Glutathione's primary function is to protect your cells and mitochondria (mitochondria generate the energy that our cells need to do their jobs) from oxidative damage. It is also essential for detoxification, energy utilisation and preventing the diseases we associate with aging. Glutathione also eliminates toxins from your cells and gives protection from the damaging effects of radiation, chemicals and environmental pollutants.

Your body's ability to produce glutathione decreases with aging. However, there are nutrients that can promote glutathione production, such as high-quality whey protein, curcumin (from turmeric), raw dairy products, eggs, and grass-fed meat. Sometimes low levels of glutathione are attributed to selenium deficiency.


Co enzyme Q10 is used by every cell in your body but levels decline as we age.  Aside from naturally protecting you from free radicals, it also:

  • Helps produce more energy for your cells
  • Provides support for your heart health, immune system and nervous system
  • Helps reduce the signs of normal ageing
  • Helps maintain normal blood pressure levels


Resveratrol is found in certain fruits like grapes, cocoa and red wine. This antioxidant can cross the blood-brain barrier, providing protection for both your brain and nervous system.

Resveratrol has been found to be so effective at warding off aging-related diseases that it was dubbed the "fountain of youth."

Aside from providing free radical protection, this antioxidant can help:

  • Inhibit the spread of cancer, especially prostate cancer
  • Lower your blood pressure
  • Keep your heart healthy and improve the elasticity of your blood vessels
  • Normalise your anti-inflammatory response
  • Prevent Alzheimer's disease


Vitamin C – dubbed the "grandfather" of the traditional antioxidants, vitamin C has a wide range of health benefits. Other than its powerfulantioxidant action, vitamin C is also essential for collagen synthesis, which is an important structural component of your bones, blood vessels, tendons, ligaments and skin.

You can get vitamin C from raw, organic vegetables and fruits as well as a supplement


Grape Seed Extract is extremely rich in antioxidants and oligomeric proanthocyanidin complexes (OPCs). This extract has been linked to a wide range of possible therapeutic properties including preventing cancer, healing wounds and treating conditions such as high cholesterol, atherosclerosis, macular degeneration, poor circulation and nerve damage.

Acai Berries have one of the highest antioxidant levels in a fruit source. It is known to protect against and neutralise free radicals, which can cause cellular damage. Acai berries have 10 times the antioxidant level of grapes, 2 times the antioxidant levels of blueberries and 10-30 times the anthocyanins of red wine. The acai berry is rich in amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein required by the body to build and make healthy connective tissue needed for collagen production, skin elasticity and texture. 

While they are all-to-often overlooked, it’s so important to look after the cells in your body, particularly as we get older. Good antioxidants are easy to come by and are even easier to work into your diet or daily routine. Do something today that your future self will thank you for. 


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Not all products recommended may be available in South Africa at this time