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Oxidative Stress

Oxidative Stress

You know that avoiding stress is essential to maintain optimal health. But did you know that protecting yourself from oxidative stress can defend your body against various problems such as chronic fatigue, insomnia, premature skin aging, cancer, and diabetes? In this article, you can find information about oxidative stress, its symptoms, and factors that can reduce it.

What is Oxidative Stress?

Oxidative stress occurs because of an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in your cells. Free radicals are molecules that contain oxygen with an unequal number of electrons. These unequal electrons in free radicals easily react with other molecules, leading to significant chemical reactions in your body. These reactions in your body are called oxidation. Oxidation is a natural and necessary process that occurs in your body regularly.

Antioxidants and Oxidative Stress

Oxidative stress arises when there is an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in your body. When the balance is restored, your body is protected against pathogenic substances. Antioxidants play a crucial role in maintaining the functions of your body and protecting against oxidative damage. They provide electrons to free radicals, preventing their unstable structures. By doing so, antioxidants help stabilize free radicals and prevent oxidation. However, when there are more free radicals in your body than antioxidants can balance, free radicals can start damaging your body's fat tissue, DNA, and proteins. Since these make up most of your internals, this damage can result in various diseases like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, cancer, and early signs of aging.

Causes of Oxidative Stress

Metabolism produces free radicals or oxidants. Removing them is necessary for the systematic functioning of biological processes. Unhealthy eating habits, smoking, and alcohol consumption can increase oxidative stress. Free radicals can be produced within your body as by-products of aerobic activity. Individual lifestyle and environment also contribute to the increase in free radicals.