Within the human body, millions of processes are occurring at all times. These processes require oxygen. Unfortunately, that same life giving oxygen can create harmful side effects, or oxidant substances, which cause cell damage and lead to chronic disease.
Oxidants, commonly known as "free radicals," can also be introduced through external sources such as exposure to the sun or pollution and other mediums being stress, alcohol intake, consumption of junk food and other unhealthy practices.
Free radicals are like gang of hooligans which roam around freely in the body colliding with organs and tissues causing oxidative damage and abrasions all over. They have no specific function to perform and hence act like devils. They cause inflammation which is found to be the primary cause of all the diseases.
To fight with these free radicals, our body requires antioxidants. Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) is a method of measuring antioxidant capacities. Scientists from Auburn University, USA recommend that individual need as much as 3000-5000 Orac Units per day to combat oxidative stress. The World Health Organization recommends a daily intake of 5 uniquely different fruits and vegetables per day to ensure that the antioxidant requirements are met.
Antioxidant agents are found in foods, such as dark green leafy vegetables. Items high in vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta-carotene are believed to be the most beneficial. They are also found in fruits and vegetables, those with the strongest colors being healthiest. Orange and red peppers, tomatoes, spinach, and carrots are examples.