My 13th book, Best Future You, is out!
Over the next several weeks, I’ll be posting excerpts from the book and blogging frequently about the main concept in the book – which is the idea of harnessing your body’s internal cellular biochemistry to achieve true balance in body, mind, and spirit – and in doing so, help you to become your “Best Future You” in terms of how you look, how you feel, and how you perform on every level.
Chapter 1 – The Battle for Balance
Antioxidants – right where you need them most
Even if we understand that overexposure to free radicals and underexposure to antioxidants can lead to damage and dysfunction in the body, we often fail to stop and ask ourselves which of our body’s systems might benefit the most from increased antioxidant protection and reduced cellular stress. The correct answer, of course, is “all of them” – but just to make sure, take a minute to think about which parts of your body are exposed to the highest levels of free radical exposure.
- For athletes, the lungs, muscles, and cardiovascular system are subjected to high free radical loads as a result of the increased oxygen and blood flow demands of exercise.
- For those of us exposed to polluted air – or secondhand cigarette smoke – or car exhaust, the free radicals that you’re breathing in that “bad air” is certainly harming your lungs, but those free radicals are also transmitted to every tissue in the entire body by our blood supply.
- For sunbathers, the skin can benefit from the increased protection that antioxidants provide against the oxidizing ultraviolet radiation of the sun. Likewise, anybody that spends time outdoors exposed to the sun should be concerned with the potential for ultraviolet radiation to damage eye health.
- For anyone who hits the drive thru for a fast food meal deal (even occasionally), consider that the fat and sugar in that burger, fries, and soft drink will unleash a storm of free radicals, inflammatory compounds, and other cellular stressors. Combine that with the fact that most people simply don’t consume enough brightly colored fruits and vegetables, and we clearly have a cellular stress “gap” between our free radical exposure and our antioxidant shield.
Thanks for reading – tune in for the next installment – “Stressed Out”—The Downside of Chronic Stress