Understanding Free Radicals and Antioxidants

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What are free radicals? Why are they damaging to the human body? And how
does vitamin E and the other antioxidant nutrients help protect the body
against free radical damage? We?ll attempt to answer these questions and
help you understand why eating 5-8 servings per day of anti-oxidant rich
fruits and vegetables can benefit your health. But first, a little
background?

-Background: A Brief Look at Chemical Bonding-

To understand the way that free radicals and antioxidants interact, you
must first understand a bit about cells and molecules.  So here's a (very)
brief refresher course in Physiology/Chemistry 101:  The hu[Oxygen
atom]man body is composed of many different types of cells. Cells are
composed of many different types of molecules. Molecules consist of one or
more atoms of one or more elements joined


Source: www.healthchecksystems.com/antioxid.htm


what are free radicals


Free-radical theory of aging - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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** Free-radical theory of aging **

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

The *free radical theory of aging* (FRTA) states that organisms age because
cells accumulate free radical damage over time.^[1] A free radical is any
atom or molecule that has a single unpaired electron in an outer shell.^[2]
While a few free radicals such as melanin are not chemically reactive, most
biologically-relevant free radicals are highly reactive.^[3] For most
biological structures, free radical damage is closely associated with
oxidative damage. Antioxidants are reducing agents, and limit oxidative
damage to biological structures by passivating them from free radicals.^[4]

Strictly speaking, the free radical theory is only concerned with free
radicals such as superoxide ( O[2]^- ), but it has since been expanded to
encompass oxidative damage from other reactive oxygen species such as
hydrogen peroxide (H[2]O[2]), or peroxynitrite (OONO^-).^[4]

Denham Harman first proposed the free radical theory of aging in the
1950s,^[5] and in the 1970s extended the idea to implicate mitochondrial
production of reactive oxygen species.^[6]

In some model organisms, such as yeast and /Drosophila/, there is evidence
that reducing oxidative damage can extend lifespan.^[7] In mice,
interventions that enhance oxidative damage generally shorten lifespan.^[8]
However, in roundworms (/Caenorhabditis elegans/), blocking the production
of the naturally occurring antioxidant superoxide dismutase has recently
been shown to /increase/ lifespan.^[9] Whether reducing oxidative damage
below normal levels is sufficient to extend lifespan remains an open and
controversial question.

*Contents*

· 1 Background
· 2 Processes
· 3 Evidence
· 4 Modifications of the free radical theory of aging

· 4.1 Mitochondrial theory of aging
· 4.2 Epigenetic Oxidative Redox Shift (EORS) Theory of Aging
· 4.3


Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free-radical_theory_of_aging

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