Oxidative stress is a well established concept within the medical research. It reflects body’s chemical imbalance between reactive harmful forms of oxygen, primarily oxygen free radicals and protective antioxidants. This itself is not a disease but it can make us feel worse, age faster and add a heightened risk of developing other complications.
The body’s metabolism is constantly forming various kinds of free radicals.it is the formation of these free radicals that needs to be regulated, which requires that we have good “rust protection”Respiration in cells requires sufficient oxygen to function. After inhaling, the oxygen, bound to blood cells, is transported out to the body’s tissues. During respiration within the cells’ energy factories (mitochondria), a small percentage of oxygen will always be converted into a certain type of oxygen free radical, the superoxide radical. There are a few types of free radical species that attack different parts of the body.
The body need to be able to defense against the free radicals. The body itself can make some antioxidants but we need to get variety of others through dietary nutrient intake to have full defense against the damaging effects of oxygen. Direct acting antioxidants function as “ free radical hunters”in that they can donate electrons and thereby “turn off” different types of radicals, creating chemically stable, harmless substances.
Different lifestyles and environments can greatly increase the load of free radicals and other ROS. This sets high expectations for our antioxidant defenses. If we cannot manage to eliminate the attacks, we suffer various degrees of the imbalance called oxidative stress. The reasons behind strong persistence of oxidative stress are individual. Common causes include poor nutrition, prolonged inflammations or infections, smoking, alcohol abuse, birth control pills,pregnancy, lack of exercise or vice versa.
The result may be that oxidative stress feeds inflammation and that inflammation then, in turn “feed” additional oxidative stress and so on. The result is an accelerating, tissue damaging “vicious circle” which needs to be stopped.Hidden oxidative stress is common that causes biochemical wear, an unhealthy condition that in most cases can be significantly reduced or eliminated with these basic steps:
- Minimize the consumption of refined sugar
- Avoid processed foods and if possible use fresh ingredients
- Everyday eat a large colour variety of vegetables,fruits and berries (Frusenia 6.0)
- Eat fatty fish several times a week if you can’t take some good quality Omega 3 fish oil supplements
- Exercise regularly, don’t smoke, if you consume alcohol, consume moderately, preferable red wine with high antioxidant capacity
- Plan daily to avoid unnecessary stress, take care to get enough sleep
- Pay attention to your oral hygiene, keep your toothbrush clean and germ free.
- Get your hsCRP and your oxidative stress value analyzed (FORT test) yearly, at least.