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Antioxidants update

Free radicals are believed to help many health problems and prevent heart disease, cancer and other disorders. Antioxidants are substances that protect cells against the effects of free radicals — molecules produced when the body breaks down food or is exposed to environmental toxins and radiation. I believe there are benefits in taking antioxidants especially in those with cardiovascular risks.

Vitamin C, vitamin E, coenzyme Q10 and selenium produce multiple positive effects on sugar and fat metabolism, blood pressure and arterial flexibility (which allows blood to move freely through the body).

Reuven Zimlichman and his research team at Wolfson Medical Center in Israel randomly divided 70 high blood pressure patients into two groups. One group was given antioxidants supplements and the other took placebo capsules for six months. Those taking the antioxidants received vitamin C (1000 mg/day), vitamin E (400 i.u/day), coenzyme Q10 (120 mg/day) and selenium (200 mcg/day).

Tests at the beginning of the trial, after three months, and again after six months documented that patients in the antioxidant group had marked improvements in their cardiovascular health. Cardiovascular profiles and cholesterol panels were healthier. The researchers concluded “antioxidant supplements have the potential to alleviate atherosclerotic damage..”

“Antioxidant supplementation significantly increased large and small artery elasticity in patients with multiple cardiovascular risk factors. This beneficial vascular effect was associated with an improvement in glucose and lipid metabolism as well as significant decrease in blood pressure,” Dr. Zimlichman said in a statement to the media. “The findings of the present study justify investigating the overall clinical impact of antioxidant treatment in patients with multiple cardiovascular risk factors.”

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