Antioxidant Superfoods Protect Your Body
from the Everyday "Wear and Tear"

Antioxidant superfoods are a grouping of various food groups that have the unique ability to stop bodily damage caused by free oxidizing radicals.  Free radicals occur during normal metabolic processes and are accelerated when diseases and other stresses on the body are present.  


Environmental contaminants, smoking, highly-processed foods, and UV radiation are all external sources of free radical creation.



Free radicals are very unstable molecules that attack fatty acids, protein, and DNA, mutating them and creating more free radicals in the process.  This creates a chain reaction of destruction that could lead to heart disease, cancers, dementia, and macular degeneration.  These dangerous molecules have also been theorized to be a key component in the aging process.  


Antioxidants act a firewall, disarming the free radical of its destructive properties, and mitigating the damage.  Incorporating antioxidant superfoods in your healthy diet plan is the best way to increase your antioxidant potential to fight off free radical formation.


Several scoring systems have been developed to measure the antioxidant potential in foods.  The most comprehensive is the Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity, or ORAC and was developed with research from Tufts University located in Boston, Massachusetts.  We have separated the antioxidant superfoods into three main categories:  produce, edible seeds, and herb/spices.  


Each of the values is based on a 100 gram serving.  It is extremely important to understand this consideration.  100 grams measures weight, not volume or piece size which are the casual measurements of food.  


For example, looking strictly at the numbers, it appears spices and herbs are the superior antioxidant superfoods.  However, to eat 100 grams of any spice or herb would not only be difficult, but also ill-advised.  On the other hand, 1 cup of any berry would be over 100 grams and is very manageable.  


In general, vegetables and fruits are possess the greatest quantity of antioxidant potential among all food groups, and is consistent with why they rank at the top of our Daily Food Guide


Fresh and Dried Produce

Veggies


  1. Artichokes 
  2. Cabbage (Red is best) 
  3. Leaf Lettuce (Red is best)       
  4. Asparagus 
  5. Sweet Potato 
  6. Cauliflower (Purple is best)  
  7. Arugula 
  8. Beets 
  9. Radishes 
  10. Potatos (Brown are best) 
  11. Onions (Red are best) 
  12. Spinach 
  13. Broccoli 
  14. Bell Peppers (Yellow are best) 
  15. Mushrooms (Portabella are best) 
  16. Eggplant 
  17. Sweet Corn 
  18. Carrots 
  19. Leeks 
  20. Celery

Score


9,416  3,145  2,426  2,252  2,115  2,084  1,904  1,776  1,750  1,680  1,521  1,513  1,510  1,043
968
932
728
697
569
552

Fruits


  1. Acai Berries 
  2. Rosehips 
  3. Elderberries 
  4. Raisins (Gold are best) 
  5. Berries (Blue>Black>Rasp>Straw) 
  6. Cranberries 
  7. Prunes 
  8. Pomegranate 
  9. Dates 
  10. Cherries 
  11. Figs 
  12. Guavas 
  13. Pears (Green are best) 
  14. Oranges 
  15. Avocados 
  16. Peaches 
  17. Grapes (Red are best) 
  18. Grapefruit 
  19. Lemons 
  20. Mangos

Score


102,700
96,150
14,697
10,450
9,621
9,090
8,059
4,479
3,895
3,747
3,383
2,550
2,201
2,103
1,922
1,922
1,837
1,640
1,346
1,300


Edible Seeds and their Products

Beans


  1. Kidney Beans 
  2. Black Beans 
  3. Pink Beans 
  4. Pinto Beans 
  5. Lentils 
  6. Soybeans 
  7. Blackeye Peas 
  8. Navy Beans 
  9. Chickpeas 
  10. Yellow Peas 
  11. Green Peas 
  12. Split Peas

Score


8,606
8,494
8,320
8,033
7,282
5,409
4,343
1,861
847
741
600
524

Nuts & Seeds


  1. Cocoa Seeds 
  2. Pecans 
  3. Walnuts 
  4. Hazelnuts 
  5. Pistachios 
  6. Almonds 
  7. Peanut Butter 
  8. Peanuts 
  9. Cashews 
  10. Macademia 
  11. Brazil Nuts 
  12. Pine Nuts

Score


55,653
17,940
13,541
9,645
7,675
4,454
3,432
3,166
1,948
1,695
1,419
720

Grains


  1. Sumac
  2. Sorghum (black is best) 
  3. Rice bran 
  4. Corn Flakes 
  5. Oat Bran Cereal 
  6. Butternut Bread 
  7. Pumpernickel Bread 
  8. Oatmeal 
  9. Multi-Grain Bread 
  10. Oatnut Bread

Score


86,800
45,400
24,287
2,359
2,183
2,104
1,963
1,708
1,421
1,318


Herbs and Spices

Herbs


  1. Rosemary (dried) 
  2. Sage 
  3. Thyme 
  4. Marjoram 
  5. Tarragon 
  6. Ginger root 
  7. Mint 
  8. Oregano 
  9. Savory 
  10. Cilantro 
  11. Basil 
  12. Dill 
  13. Chives

Score


165,280
32,004
27,426
27,297
15,542
14,840
13,978
13,970
9,465
5,141
4,805
4,392
2,094

Spices


  1. Cloves 
  2. Cinnamon (ground) 
  3. Tumeric (ground) 
  4. Vanilla Beans (dried) 
  5. Nutmeg (ground) 
  6. Cumin       
  7. Black Peppers
  8. Chili Powder 
  9. Paprika

Score


290,283
131,420
127,068
122,400
69,640
50,372
34,053
23,636
21,932


One word of advice:  Don't live by the numbers.  In fact, the USDA has recently retracted its endorsement of this system because food manufacturers have manipulated the numbers to deceive customers and create inconsistency.  


We want to empower you with a list of foods in various groups that are the best-of-the-best so you can make good choices at the market and know which are antioxidant superfoods.



**As always, feel free to use the navigation below to backtrack and get an overview of Healthy Diet Mentor and our plan to get you on your way to a lifelong healthy diet.


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