Beverages & Drinks Rich In Antioxidants

We all know that a diet rich in antioxidants plays a role in maintaining our overall health and helps reduce risks of heart disease and damage caused by the oxidation process. The body may naturally produce free radicals known as oxidants due to aging or diseases such as diabetes or pollution may be a cause. However, certain foods naturally contain antioxidants that counter the oxidative stress caused to the cells and damage them. Nowadays, antioxidant beverages have become very popular with consumers becoming more aware of what they consume.

The growing demand for antioxidant beverages is due to many health benefits associated with their consumption and increased awareness towards health related issues.  We recently wrote an article about making your own antioxidant beverage at home and our readers wanted to know more. Hence, along with Rashida Vapiwala, Founder - LabelBlind™ we bring to you a complete guide to knowing more about antioxidant beverages.

Lets Know More About the Role of Antioxidants in Maintaining Our Health:

Studies indicate that antioxidants primarily protect the cells in the body from free radical damage that may cause many diseases including certain cancers and heart ailments. Moreover, antioxidants also play a role in:

Slow Down Aging: Antioxidants play a significant role in delaying the aging process by fighting free radicals. Low antioxidant defense could speed up aging. The first and most common signs include wrinkled skin and dull hair.

Boost Immunity: Free radicals cause damage to the immune cells which hinders body’s defense mechanism from working efficiently, antioxidants help counter this.

Antioxidants also play a role in prevention of certain diseases like:

Cancer: Free radicals have the potency to initiate tumor formation & also leaves the tumors vulnerable to cause more damage to the patient. However, studies show that antioxidants help prevent certain cancers.

Parkinson’s disease: Oxidants cause neuro inflammation that leads to a chronic degeneration of the neurons, a major cause of parkinson’s disease.

Alzheimer’s disease: Oxidants (reactive oxidant species) play a role in furthering synapse dysfunction (loss of synapse activity in affected parts of the brain) hence progressing the disease.

Cataracts: Aging eye is susceptible to damage by free radicals because dysfunctional mitochondria is the primary site for oxidative damage.

Atherosclerosis: Free radicals cause vascular injury and are the final step in etiology of atherosclerosis.

Antioxidants are easily available through natural sources for instance in foods like:

  • Vitamin A: Dairy products, Eggs.
  • Carotenoids are a group of antioxidant compounds that are a pre-cursor to Vitamin A. Brightly colored fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, peas, spinach, mangoes contain Beta-carotene
  • Lycopene: Pink and red fruits and vegetables, including tomatoes and watermelon
  • Lutein: Green, leafy vegetables, corn, papaya, and oranges
  • Zeaxanthin: cooked spinach, dark green leafy vegetables, other green and yellow vegetables
  • Vitamin C: amla, strawberry, oranges, guava, bell peppers
  • Vitamin E: Nuts and seeds, sunflower and other vegetable oils, and green, leafy vegetables
  • Selenium: Rice, corn, wheat, and other whole grains, as well as nuts, eggs, cheese, and legumes
  • Manganese: Almonds, Oatmeal, Brown rice, Spinach, Dark chocolate

Other important phytochemical:
  • Flavonoids: green tea, red wine, apples, legumes, soy products
  • Catechins: dark chocolates, red wine, black tea, legumes
  • Polyphenols: strawberry, coffee, vinegar, grapes, wine
  • Quercetins: onions, dark cherries, olive oil

In other words, antioxidants are important scavengers of free radicals. They maintain health and improve quality of life by countering the burden of diseases. The easiest way to consume antioxidants in compact yet concentrated forms is with juices, smoothies and infused waters However, it is important to select your antioxidant beverage wisely, as some might loot you in the name of antioxidants while providing only simple sugars.

In addition, lets look at some simple ways of making antioxidant beverages at home:

Infused water: fill a pitcher/ bottle with ice cold water, add fruits and herbs (cucumber + lemon + mint, strawberries + mint leaves + basil etc.) and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Juices: Try these refreshing fruit combinations – 2 pomegranates, 1 orange, 1 green apple, 1 lime; or 2 medium beets, 2 c. blueberries, 1 apple, 2 large carrots, 1/2 c. raw broccoli, 1 whole lemon, 2″ knob ginger, skin removed, 1/2-1 c. pure coconut water). Blend the fruits together, strain and refrigerate. Enjoy chilled juices throughout the day.

Smoothies: 1 cup coconut water (unsweetened, organic), 1 1/2 cups berries (mixed, organic), such as strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, or blueberries, 1 banana (ripe, cut into chunks), 1 tablespoon protein powder. Blend all ingredients, add ice and serve.

In conclusion, here are a few pointers to keep in mind while consuming antioxidant beverages:

Keep sipping infused water throughout the day
Consume juices and smoothies in between major meals
Always drink fresh, do not heat

Rashida Vapiwala is the Founder of LabelBlind™
LabelBlind™ helps consumers make smart food choices by s-i-m-p-l-i-f-y-i-n-g nutrition information on food labels.

You can reach her on:
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  1. Thank you for posting this article. I would definitely try these recipes. When I was searching for cardiac hospitals, I found best heart specialist hospital in Chennai which offers the best cardiac treatment in Chennai. They are highly dedicated experienced specialists who work tirelessly for the welfare of patients.


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