Published : 07/19/2017
In times like these, where disease prevalence amongst modern societies is rapidly increasing and particularly the number of cancer outbreaks is skyrocketing, one has to wonder, whether the underlying reason might not have something to do with our current eating and living habits, which are largely based on eating highly processed foods in combination with insufficient activity patterns in an environment of progressing environmental pollution. It calls for a new level of awareness regarding the food choices we make, recognizing the nutritional potentials housed inside many of our foods and letting them work for our very own health. Antioxidants, naturally found in many of our foods, are powerful agents to help bring us back on track for sustained human health.
As the word itself already hints at, antioxidants are molecules that can counteract damaging oxidation reactions within our body, caused by an oversupply of free radicals. Free radicals are the trigger of many of today’s inflammatory diseases. They are unstable oxygen-containing molecules that are missing an electron in their chemical make-up, which makes them highly reactive. They then go about and damage cells all over the body, at worst causing cell degeneration, which stimulates the formation of cancerous cells. The process of stealing electrons is referred to as oxidation, kick-starting dangerous chain reactions of setting free other free radicals. Once free radicals dominate, the state is referred to as oxidative stress, which has been closely associated with heart disease, cancer, arthritis, stroke, respiratory disease, immune deficiency and other inflammatory conditions. Antioxidants, also known as “free radical scavengers”, are molecules stable enough to donate an electron and are thus able to inhibit oxidative stress, preventing further cellular damage.
Whilst free radicals are a natural by-product of our metabolism, today’s lifestyle habits consisting of an increased consumption of junk food, alcohol and smoking, coupled with the constant exposure to environmental pollutants in our air and soils, result in our body being literally bombarded with free radicals. Consequently, our bodies are no longer able to handle the excess amounts of free radicals and are thus in need of additional dietary sources of antioxidants.
Our modern-day diet, which favours cereals, dairy products and meat, all of which supply us with abundant amounts of macronutrients such as proteins, carbohydrates and fats, however lacks much of the valuable antioxidants that we so dearly need. These are primarily found in different types of vegetables, shoots, as well as in fruits and natural oils and fats, including nuts. Highly potent antioxidants are for example vitamin C and secondary metabolites such as polyphenols (e.g. flavonoids). Secondary metabolites serve the plant as defence mechanisms against environmental stresses and may unfold equally beneficial effects once inside the human body. One particular powerful flavonoid is OPC (Oligomere Proanthocyanidine), found in the pips of grapes and in the skin of fruits. The antioxidant potential of OPC is almost 20 times more powerful than that of vitamin C and even 50 times higher than that of vitamin E. Another leading source of antioxidants are chokeberries. They contain the flavonoid group of anthocyanins, which are responsible for the blue and purple colours found in many plants and fruits.
Our Eat, - bars and snacks, consisting of nuts and dried fruits, thus host an abundance of powerful antioxidants, only waiting to unfold their many health benefits within you. Whether you choose coconut-cranberry, cashew-cherry or plum-cashew, you will be provided with valuable amounts of secondary metabolites, including beta-carotene, vitamin C and polyphenols. When craving a sweet yet antioxidant empowering treat, our Eat- cookies are your ideal go-to snack: apple-crumble, cocoa-almond or raspberry-vanilla – they are all designed to satisfy your palate while treating you to utmost health and well-being. Whereas apple is particularly rich in vitamin C, cocoa and raspberries are a powerhouse of polyphenols. And for all desert-loving health food enthusiast, our Eat- balls consisting of raspberry plum, coconut-almond or chocolate-almond, will make all your dreams come true – antioxidants transformed into the highest culinary delight!