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The Powerful Antioxidant Effects Of Exercise

February 2, 2021


It is hard to walk through any health food aisle in the grocery store without coming across another food, drink, or supplement claiming to provide anti oxidants. These products’ effects claim to target free radicals or the naturally occurring unstable molecules, due to changes in electrons, which are created through our body’s cellular metabolism. If these metabolic waste products accumulate within the body’s tissues they can lead to damaging oxidative reactions impairing our cells’ function. Nutrition is believed to provide some anti oxidant effects within the body, but the evidence on its’ effectiveness has been mixed and nutrition alone has not beat the effects of a lesser known anti oxidant, exercise.

As we exercise, we also create free radicals in the body due to the metabolic processes required to fuel our cells. Thankfully, the human body has created a remarkable mechanism to remove these by products during and after exercise. Thus, not only can our body’s remove free radicals during exercise but they continue to remove these metabolic by products even after we stop exercising. Reviews of the research have found consistent evidence on the presence of anti oxidant indicators during and after an acute bout of exercise and are lower in active vs. sedentary individuals (de Sousa. Sports Med. 2017). Authors believe this mechanism may behind some of the health benefits found in those who exercise consistently.

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