Your body protects itself from harmful substances like a soldier in battle. Think of antioxidants as part of this virtual army. Antioxidants are substances involved in protecting your cells against damage caused by unstable atoms, called free radicals. You get antioxidants from a variety of foods that include fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, meat, poultry and fish. Free-radical damage is linked to heart disease, cancer and other diseases, but a diet high in antioxidants helps protect you from free radicals.
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Know Your Antioxidants
Vitamin E, C and the carotenoids such as beta-carotene, lutein and lycopene are examples of the primary antioxidants in your diet. Other examples of antioxidants include selenium and vitamin A. Foods high in vitamin E include nuts, seeds, vegetables, fish oils and whole grains. You can get vitamin C from a wide variety of fruits and vegetables. Foods rich in carotenoids include egg yolk, spinach, carrots, Brussels sprouts, peaches, grains, tomatoes, broccoli and sweet potatoes.