Written by Abbi Ryan

Abbi Ryan is a contributing author and a creative director at Dr. J's Natural with a passion for all things health and wellness. As a former college athlete and fellow health enthusiast, Abbi aims to share her thoughts and research about the important things that will help create a happier and healthier lifestyle. In her spare time, Abbi enjoys cooking, spending time with family, and painting new pieces of wall decor for her new home!

January 21, 2022

Antioxidants are the basis of all health. They are in many of the colorful fruits and vegetables that we eat every day without realizing it. But it is important to know what antioxidants do, why they are so important to our overall health, and where we can consume antioxidants in the most natural way.


Mostly caused by outside effects of the environment, oxidation in the body is responsible for the damage of cells and other structures, these are known as free radicals. While the body can manage a few free radicals and depends on some to keep the body functioning properly, an excess of free radicals can be quite harmful to the body’s overall health, leading to a number of problems. Commonly known as “free-radical scavengers”, antioxidants search for and neutralize these toxins, limiting their harm to the body’s vital organs. When overexposed to harmful toxins in our environment (car exhaust, air pollution, sunlight, etc.), antioxidants are the search and capture team that helps prevent or slow the damage of cells caused by these “free radicals” entering the body. Antioxidants are also responsible for slowing down aging cells that can begin to deteriorate the skin barrier, causing dark spots, fine lines, and wrinkles at a younger age than normal.

A lack of antioxidants can result in the following conditions:

  • Deterioration of the eye lens, contributing to the loss of vision
  • Inflammation of the joints, contributing to arthritis
  • Damage to the brain’s nerve cells, leading to Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s
  • Acceleration in the aging process
  • Certain cancers as a result of damaged cell DNA


Because of Antioxidants’ ability to neutralize certain “free radicals” in the body, they have the power to lower your risk of certain diseases. Antioxidants have major health benefits that go beyond eliminating harmful toxins from damaging vital cells in our bodies.

Antioxidants help reduce oxidative stress.

When we do not contain enough antioxidants in our bodies, free radicals can build up causing oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is an imbalance in our body’s antioxidants and free radicals causing an increased risk for a number of diseases. Inflammation is a major driver for a list of harmful diseases and antioxidants work to counteract this cycle by locating and eliminating free radicals in the body and restoring that balance for good health.

Antioxidants support healthy aging.

Oxidative stress, aging, and inflammation are all cut from the same cloth. All three play a major role in the degeneration of cells in the body. Antioxidants help protect our healthy, regenerative cells in the body which contribute to repair and growth. They help preserve our DNA.

Antioxidants support healthy brain function.

As we have learned, antioxidants help counteract the negative effects of oxidative stress. This also includes damaging cells that are vital to maintaining healthy brain function. Two vital antioxidants called, “luteolin” and “diosmin” have been shown to reduce the number of free radicals, including beta-amyloid in the brain. Beta-Amyloid is a common symptom of Alzheimer’s Disease and it is often heard that berries (high in antioxidants) are recommended for those at increased risk for this brain disease.


It is very important that we are getting an adequate intake of antioxidants in our bodies every day and the majority of this can come from our daily diet. The best sources of antioxidants are often found in plant-based foods such as fruits and vegetables.
Foods that have been known to be especially antioxidant-rich include:

  • Nuts and seeds
  • Berries
  • Dark chocolate
  • Green and black teas
  • Tomatoes
  • Kidney beans
  • Kale & Spinach


Protocatechuate (PCA) contains natural antioxidants, more powerful than vitamin E. In the medical literature (cited below), the antioxidative activity was tested and compared to the standard antioxidant, Trolox, in hopes of discovering its natural composition as a “free-radical scavenger”. PCA evidently showed various pharmacological effects which may have been closely related to its antioxidant activities. In the study, PCA was measured, in vitro, in order to examine these activities in comparison to Trolox. Results showed that PCA was in fact, a natural antioxidant, with the ability to slow the damage of cells and protect the internal organs from oxidative stress.

Li X, Wang X, Chen D, Chen S. Antioxidant Activity and Mechanism of Protocatechuic Acid in vitro. Functional Foods in Health and Disease 2011; 7:232-244 Page 232 of 244 Research Open Access.


While the best source of antioxidants may come from plant-based foods such as fruits and vegetables, PCA contains a naturally occurring antioxidant composition that you can absorb in greater amounts. Therefore, PCA allows for all of the nutrients and “free radical scavengers” that you may not be getting enough of in your daily diet. Live a long, fuller, toxin-free life with the natural, abundant antioxidants that PCA can provide!


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