These 8 Antioxidants Can Turn Back Time & Delay Physical Aging (Yes, Really!)

by Dr. Jonathan D'Souza

For many years, aging was viewed as something that was unavoidable, over which one had no control. However, emerging research suggests that we could have much more control over the aging process than before. While most of us formerly believed that aging was solely to do with the number of candles on the cake, it is actually the result of one’s exposure to stress levels and the function of the numerous cells in our body.

However, the best way to protect cells from aging is by upping your intake of potent antioxidants, many of which are freely available in different foods. These powerful compounds aid a healthy lifestyle by supporting cellular health, which in turn delays the body’s physical aging process.

Here are eight antioxidants you should start including in your diet to turn back time.

1. Resveratrol
Found in peanuts, chocolates, and red wine, resveratrol is a unique antioxidant that can cross the blood-brain barrier and prevent brain cells from being damaged by free radicals. It has a calming effect on the body and helps ease stress and promote longevity.[1,2]

How To Get Your Daily Dose

  • Eating five to six peanuts, a piece of chocolate, ½ a cup of grapes or a sip of red wine can provide you with your daily dose of resveratrol.

2. Pterostilbene
A compound similar to resveratrol, pterostilbene promotes wound healing and slows down the aging process. Research shows that it is effective in protecting aging brain cells, controlling blood sugar and cholesterol levels.[3,4] 

Pterostilbene is abundantly found in almonds and various Vaccinium berries such as cranberries, blueberries, bilberries or whortleberries.

How To Get Your Daily Dose

  • Eat five to six blueberries, cranberries or bilberries twice a day to get your daily dose of this antioxidant.

3. Anthocyanins & Punicalagins
Anthocyanins are potent plant antioxidants that give pomegranates their red color. Punicalagins, another antioxidant found in pomegranates (or its extract), support heart health, neural synapses and reduce AGEs (advanced glycation end products). AGEs are compounds associated with Alzheimer’s disease and type 2 diabetes and responsible for accelerating the aging process.[5]

How To Get Your Daily Dose

  • Eat ½ a cup of pomegranate every day to meet your daily dose for this antioxidant.

4. Salidroside & Rosavin
Salidroside and rosavin, two potent compounds present in the herb Tibetan rhodiola act as powerful antioxidants that protect the nerves and brain cells. They improve physical endurance and promote a feeling of well-being.[6]

How To Get Your Daily Dose

  • Take 200mg Tibetan rhodiola extract once a day. To buy this herb, click here.

5. R-lipoic Acid
R-lipoic acid is the most bioavailable and bioactive form of alpha-lipoic acid. It plays a vital role in the energy creation within the mitochondria (powerhouses of the cell). This makes it crucial for improving cellular health. A deficiency of this can speed up the aging process.[7,8] Liver and kidney are good meat source of this antioxidant. Spinach, broccoli and yeast extract are the vegetarian dietary sources.

How To Get Your Daily Dose

  • Eat one serving of spinach or broccoli every day .

6. Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10)
Coenzyme Q10 is needed by every cell to produce ATP, a high-energy molecule whose job is to store and supply energy the cell with energy. It neutralizes free radicals and protects the cell, the mitochondria and the DNA from damage. Although the body naturally makes CoQ10, supplementing can help fight off fatigue, improve heart health and provide relief from symptoms of chronic disease.[9,10] 

CoQ10 is found in high levels in organ meats such as heart, kidneys, and liver, as well as in sardines, mackerel, and beef. Vegetable sources of CoQ10 include broccoli, spinach, and cauliflower. Legumes such as soybeans and peanuts are the best non-animal sources of the substance.

How To Get Your Daily Dose

  • Eat five to six peanuts daily or include broccoli or cauliflower in your daily diet.

7. Pyrroloquinoline Quinone (PQQ) Disodium Salt
This non-protein co-enzyme rejuvenates the mitochondria and improves cellular metabolic processes. It neutralizes free radicals and reactive oxygen species (ROS), compounds that are responsible for physical aging.[11] 

PQQ is found in most plant foods, vegetables (in minuscule amounts), fruits and relatively high levels can be detected in fermented soybean products such as green soybeans, spinach, tofu, green tea (Camellia sinensis), green peppers, parsely, and kiwi fruits.

How To Get Your Daily Dose

  • Sip a cup of green tea twice daily or eat 1/2 cup of tofu to get your daily dose of this antioxidant.

8. Tyrosine Aminotransferase 2 (TAT2)
TAT2, a compound in astragalus root, stimulates the production of telomerase that is responsible for repairing telomeres (a region of repetitive nucleotide sequences at each end of a chromosome). Short telomeres are the result of damaged DNA and contribute to increased cellular aging.

Besides this, astragalus root is an excellent diuretic and can flush out toxins that are present in the liver. The urine buildup also helps flush out toxins that otherwise accumulate in the kidneys.[12,13]

How To Get Your Daily Dose

  • Take a capsule of astragalus once daily. Buy astragalus in capsule, tea or extract from here.

For more interesting stories, visit our Health page. Read more about Diseases & Conditions here.

1. de la Lastra CA, Villegas I. Resveratrol as an antioxidant and pro-oxidant agent: mechanisms and clinical implications. Biochem Soc Trans. 2007 Nov;35(Pt

5):1156-60. Review. PubMed PMID: 17956300.

2. Kavas GO, Ayral PA, Elhan AH. The effects of resveratrol on oxidant/antioxidant systems and their cofactors in rats. Adv Clin Exp Med. 2013 Mar-Apr;22(2):151-5. PubMed PMID: 23709370.

3. McCormack D, McFadden D. A Review of Pterostilbene Antioxidant Activity and Disease Modification. Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity. 2013;2013:575482. doi:10.1155/2013/575482.

4. Mikstacka R, Rimando AM, Ignatowicz E. Antioxidant effect of trans-resveratrol, pterostilbene, quercetin and their combinations in human erythrocytes in vitro. Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2010 Mar;65(1):57-63. doi: 10.1007/s11130-010-0154-8. PubMed PMID: 20108046.

5. Liu W, Ma H, Frost L, Yuan T, Dain JA, Seeram NP. Pomegranate phenolics inhibit formation of advanced glycation endproducts by scavenging reactive carbonyl species. Food Funct. 2014 Nov;5(11):2996-3004. doi: 10.1039/c4fo00538d. PubMed PMID: 25233108.

6. Radomska-Leśniewska DM, Skopiński P, Bałan BJ, et al. Angiomodulatory properties of Rhodiola spp. and other natural antioxidants. Central-European Journal of Immunology. 2015;40(2):249-262. doi:10.5114/ceji.2015.52839.

7. Hagen TM, Vinarsky V, Wehr CM, Ames BN. (R)-alpha-lipoic acid reverses the age-associated increase in susceptibility of hepatocytes to tert-butylhydroperoxide both in vitro and in vivo. Antioxid Redox Signal. 2000 Fall;2(3):473-83. PubMed PMID: 11229361.

8. Zhang H, Jia H, Liu J, Ao N, Yan B, Shen W, Wang X, Li X, Luo C, Liu J. Combined R-alpha-lipoic acid and acetyl-L-carnitine exerts efficient preventative
effects in a cellular model of Parkinson’s disease. J Cell Mol Med. 2010 Jan;14(1-2):215-25. doi: 10.1111/j.1582-4934.2008.00390.x. PubMed PMID: 20414966;
PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3837594.

9. Littarru GP, Tiano L. Bioenergetic and antioxidant properties of coenzyme Q10: recent developments. Mol Biotechnol. 2007 Sep;37(1):31-7. Review. PubMed PMID: 17914161.

10. Prakash S, Sunitha J, Hans M. Role of coenzyme Q10 as an antioxidant and bioenergizer in periodontal diseases. Indian Journal of Pharmacology. 2010;42(6):334-337. doi:10.4103/0253-7613.71884.

11. Zhang JJ, Zhang RF, Meng XK. Protective effect of pyrroloquinoline quinone against Abeta-induced neurotoxicity in human neuroblastoma SH-SY5Y cells. Neurosci Lett. 2009 Oct 30;464(3):165-9. doi: 10.1016/j.neulet.2009.08.037. Epub 2009 Aug 20. PubMed PMID: 19699263.

12. Huang WM, Liang YQ, Tang LJ, Ding Y, Wang XH. Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects of Astragalus polysaccharide on EA.hy926 cells. Exp Ther Med. 2013 Jul;6(1):199-203. Epub 2013 Apr 23. PubMed PMID: 23935746; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3735908.


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