Healthy Skin Challenge: Day 10

Day 10 – Antioxidants prevent skin damage

Antioxidants are substances that prevent oxidation, also referred to as oxidative stress. They are nature’s way of protecting your cells from damage.   In this process of oxidation, free radicals breakdown skin tissue, speeding up the aging process.  Antioxidant-rich foods are plant-based and their protective compounds are referred to as phytochemicals, meaning derived from plants.  The best way to ensure that one is getting adequate antioxidants is to eat a rainbow of fruits and vegetables every day –remember challenge day 1?

All fruits and vegetables are good for us; however, certain plant foods pack a stronger antioxidant punch than others.  Scientists at the USDA have developed a scale for measuring an antioxidant foods ability to neutralize free radicals, called the ORAC score, short for Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity. The higher a food’s ORAC score, the more powerful it is in combating age-related degeneration and disease.  Foods with the highest ORAC scores include spices, cocoa powder (unsweetened) and richly colored fruits and vegetables.

The challenge for today – Take a look at the ORAC scale and consume some foods with high ORAC values when eating your 5-7 servings of fruits and vegetables.  Note that most spices have high ORAC values.

For Breakfast today try this Acai Berry Bowl!



And for dinner this spiced red lentil, tomato and kale soup!


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