WHAT IS ORAC?
Antioxidants is one of those words that you hear a lot even though people don’t fully understand what it means or how it works. Oxygen is necessary for life, but on the other hand it inevitably generates reactive molecules throughout all tissues in the body. These reactive molecules that can interact with the body’s millions of cells, is something called a,
Your body makes free radicals as it processes food, exercise, emotions, sunlight, air pollution, toxins from smoking and alcohol. Free radicals can affect any cell and are capable of changing cells and the genetic material inside them. Free radicals will stick to just about anything. When free radicals stick to something in the body, that thing becomes oxidized. When something becomes oxidized it becomes,
Oxidation is happening everywhere, it’s the process that rusts iron, turns a cut apple brown and causes cooking oils to go rancid. Oxidation is not good unless we are trying to eliminate something. Interesting enough, the body intelligently uses the process of oxidation to kill bacteria. But this can burn at both ends as oxidative damage caused by free radicals in the body is most often a fiery thing. However, the body, in its intelligence, has many ways that it puts out the fires of oxidation. One of the things that the body douses out fires of oxidation with is called,
Antioxidants are the “Anti-Agers” of the nutrient world, protecting your body from free radical and oxidative damage. Although the body does produce antioxidant molecules, these also need raw materials and minerals to operate at their optimum capacity with antioxidants that are delivered by the diet, mainly from fruit and vegetables. You can also support your diet with food supplements. Vitamin C, E, Manganese and Selenium all act as antioxidants which contribute to the protection of cells from oxidative stress.
The capacity of an antioxidant is qualified by its,
ORAC stands for “Oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity”.
The most common type of a Free Radical in the body is formed from oxygen hence the term “Oxygen Radical”.
ORAC score refers to a method that was developed by scientists at the National Institute of Health and Aging (NIH) to measures the antioxidant capacity of any food or substance. It’s generally believed that foods with high ORAC scores have greater antioxidant capacity and more effectively neutralize free radicals. According to the free-radical theory, a high antioxidant intake will slow the oxidative processes and free radical damage.