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The Healthy, Wealthy & Active Aging Podcast

Apr 21, 2019

Oxidatve stress and your body

The body is under constant attack from oxidative stress. Oxygen in the body splits into single atoms with unpaired electrons. Electrons like to be in pairs, so these single oxygen atoms, also known as free radicals, scavenge the body seeking an electron so they can “mate”. This causes damage to cells, proteins, DNA and consequently, body organs.

Free Radicals

 Free radicals are associated with human disease, including cancer, atherosclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and many others. They also may have a link to aging, which has been defined as a gradual accumulation of free-radical damage, according to Christopher Wanjek, the Bad Medicine columnist for Live Science.

 Substances that generate free radicals can be found in the food we eat, the medicines we take, the air we breathe and the water we drink, according to the Huntington's Outreach Project for Education at Stanford University. These substances include fried foods, alcohol, tobacco smoke, pesticides and air pollutants.  

 When free radicals accumulate, they frequently cause a state known as oxidative stress. This may damage your DNA and other important structures in your cells.  Sadly, chronic oxidative stress can increase your risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer

 According to naturopathic doctor Donielle Wilson’s website, symptoms of oxidative stress may also include fatigue, headaches, noise sensitivity, memory loss, brain fog, muscle and joint pain, wrinkles and gray hair, vision trouble and decreased immunity. 



 Antioxidants are compounds produced in your body and found in foods. They help defend your cells from damage caused by these potentially harmful free radicals.

 Fortunately, eating a diet rich in antioxidants can help increase your blood antioxidant levels to fight oxidative stress and reduce the risk of these diseases.

For the 12 best foods to eat, check out the podcast or my blog at