Some people do not belief in taking nutritional supplements. For those who do, may be worried if they are overdosing on supplements, so try not to take too much. If you ask any doctors and nutritionist about supplements, most of them will say it is a waste of time and money.
In my last post, we learn that oxidative stress is raging a war within every cell in our body. Oxidative stress is created by unstable free radicals damaging cellular structure, which over time, leads to aging and chronic degenerative diseases such as heart attack, diabetes, asthma, bronchitis, arthritis and cancer.
Free radicals the body produce is never constant. Hence, our body defense system never know exactly how much free radicals it will have to deal with on any given day.
Many factors can increase the amount of free radicals the body must neutralize:
1) Excessive exercise
Doing excessive amount of exercise like in extreme sports can significantly increase the amount of free radicals. Dr. Kenneth Cooper reported it in his book The Antioxidant Revolution, which strenuous sports people die prematurely of heart attack, strokes and cancer.
Therefore, it is better to do moderate exercise where the amount of free radicals produced g up only slightly. If you are exercising excessively, then taking significant amount of antioxidants supplements is necessary.
2) Excessive stress
Our modern lifestyle with job and family demands create severe emotional stress, which cause a significant increase in free radicals. Do you realize that when you are under stress, you fall sick frequently and take a longer time to recover?
3) Air Pollution
Air pollution is a major cause of oxidative stress in our lungs and bodies. Fumes from automobiles, industrial emissions, household chemicals contain ozone, nitrogen dioxide, sulphur dioxide and hydrocarbon vapours, which generate a significant amount of free radicals.
4) Cigarette Smoke
Smoking has been associated with the increased risk of asthma, chronic bronchitis, lung cancer and cardiovascular disease. Cigarette smoke contains several different toxins, all of which increase the amount of free radicals appearing not just in our lungs but also different parts of the body.
5) Food and Water Pollution
Contamination of drinking water with heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, aluminum due to industrial waste dumping and agricultural process using herbicides and pesticides as well as poor water treatment.
Processed food contains many ingredients that are used to help with food processing, enhance taste and texture but are harmful to our health by increasing oxidative stress in the body.
6) Ultraviolet sunlight
UVA and UVB light increase the free radical production in the skin and thus oxidative stress in the skin. It destroys collagen and muscles in the skin deeper layer resulting in wrinkles, drop in firmness and uneven pigmentation.
7) Medication and radiation
Every drug taken into the body is a foreign substance to the body. The body has to work harder to metabolize and eliminate it. This puts increased demand on many metabolic pathways in the liver and the body, causing an increased in the oxidative stress.
In our modern lifestyle with the prevalent use of mobile devices and wireless Internet connection expose the body to radiation and oxidative stress.
How to win the war?
When you understand the tremendous damage that oxidative stress inflicts during the normal daily life on the human body, you will realize how important it is to optimize your body’s natural defense system.
Antioxidants are the only ally that will neutralize the free radicals that are ravaging our body cells. To win the war, we must have enough antioxidants to counter the amount of free radicals produced by our body metabolic process.
Eating a healthy diet and regular moderate exercise is the best way to build the body defense system. However, this is still not good enough for 2 reasons:
- Most of us do not really follow a healthy diet and the amount of antioxidants needed to prevent oxidative stress way exceed the RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance). Therefore, we need to add nutritional supplements to balance the antioxidants level with the free radicals produced.
- The quality of nutrients in the fresh food has dropped by 60% over the last 10 years. Soil erosion, harvesting early for shipment to other countries are the main reasons for the drop in nutrients contents.
As you can see, our toxic world and stressful lifestyle make it imperative that our antioxidant defense system is optimized. Nutritional supplementation is really about health and preventing disease.
So, optimized cellular nutrition is about eating a well balanced diet with nutritional supplement and moderate exercise program. This will decrease the risk of developing chronic degenerative diseases and improve the quality of life.
Do you take supplements? Share with me what supplements do you take in the comment box below.
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