Antioxidants: ‘Super Foods’ for Athletic Performance

Antioxidants or ‘super foods’ as they are called promote growth and healing. They also play a role in physical performance and can enhance athletic performance. To gain that extra edge, nearly everyone I know takes supplements in hopes to improve their athletic performance. Another key to this equation is including antioxidants into your nutritional strategy.

Incorporating antioxidants around exercise times prevents damage to cells and stress placed on your body from exercise. Antioxidants help reduce the amount of inflammation in an athlete’s body after a hard training session; this in turn reduces the amount of delayed onset muscle soreness syndrome, (DOMs).

Over time, consuming antioxidants through food will help clean up the pineal gland. The pineal gland controls the endocrine system. The endocrine system controls growth, energy levels and strength. Keeping your pineal gland optimized is to your advantage; it will enhance your athletic performance naturally!

Antioxidants occur naturally in a variety of foods; they can be found in flavonoids, vitamins and some trace minerals.

Blueberries are full of antioxidants, but so are a wide variety of other colorful fruits and vegetables.

Fruits and Vegetables

  • Apricots
  • Avocado
  • Broccoli
  • Butternut squash
  • Carrots

  • Cherries
  • Kale
  • Kiwis
  • Mangos
  • Oranges
  • Plums
  • Spinach
  • Strawberries

Nuts

  • Almonds
  • Pecans
  • Pistachios
  • Walnuts

*These are some of the highest in antioxidants.

This happens to be one of my favorite dark chocolates and it’s full of antioxidants.

  • Spices – Cinnamon, clove, ginger, oregano and turmeric.
  • Green tea
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E
  • Alpha Lipoic acid
  • Trace minerals – beta-carotene and selenium.

Not all antioxidants are created equal.

Here are some Beastly Tips to help you select the best sources.

  • Purchase organic fruits and vegetables that are free of pesticides.
  • Ceylon Cinnamon has more health benefits than the common table spice, ‘cassia.’
  • Vitamin C is a very powerful. Make it even better; select a C with Camu, Camu. Camu is one of the highest natural sources of c derived from berries in the Peruvian Amazon.
  • Choose High Gamma E, this E has far more anti-inflammatory actions compared to your local drugstore E.
  • Select R-Alpha Lipoic Acid over the S-form. The S-form is not as effective, because it is synthetic.
  • Select Raw Cacao; it’s unsweetened and in raw form.

Lately, I’ve been using Navitas Naturals, cacao powder.

Implementing antioxidants into your daily routine

Minerals are needed in small amounts and can be obtained naturally through your diet. Aim for 6-9 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. Consider incorporating the antioxidant rich foods below:

Beta-Carotene
  • Carrots
  • Spinach
  • Pumpkin
  • Butternut squash
  • Apricots
  • Mangos
  • Nectarines
Selenium
  • Asparagus
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Grains
  • Meats
  • Nuts – Brazilian and sunflower seeds.

Next week we’ll take a look at how you can stack your supplements, to get the most bang for your buck!

Do you already include antioxidants into your nutritional strategy? I’d love to hear from you; let me know in the comment section below.

 

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