Antioxidants Are Vital for Good Health
What are Antioxidants?
Antioxidants are compounds that occur naturally in many foods or are produced by our bodies. They protect our cells from destructive effects caused by free radicals. Carotenoids are some of the most common antioxidants found in our diet. They serve an important role in the antioxidant system and work as part of the first line of defense in the body. They are the pigments found in fruits and vegetables that give them the vibrant colors red, orange, and yellow. The most common and important carotenoids are lycopene, alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, and astaxanthin. These serve the role of sacrificial antioxidants and can sustain more than 20 attacks by free radicals to protect key parts of the cell.
A person’s carotenoid levels are an important indicator of the strength of an individual’s antioxidant system. The Pro A Check Antioxidants Scanner measures the total carotenoid content in the human skin. Total skin carotenoid scores are proven to reliably correlate to blood antioxidant levels, to fruit & vegetable intake, and oxidative stress levels.
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Carotenoids & Glutathione: An important link
Glutathione is known as the master antioxidant and is the most important endogenous (made by the body) antioxidant. Glutathione is involved with detoxification, anti-aging, signaling in the immune system and a neurotransmitter. For the immune and antioxidant systems to function properly, glutathione is required.
It is also known to improve the use and distribution of many other antioxidants and important compounds in the body. One important enzyme produced by glutathione is Glutathione S-transferases (GSTP1). GSTP1 serves the role of transporting carotenoids to biomembranes. By raising a person’s glutathione level, you are promoting the body’s ability to absorb the carotenoids taken in through food or supplements in the tissue.
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