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Why do I Need Antioxidants? Birmingham

Antioxidant supplements contain differing amounts of nutrients and plant extracts, including betacarotene, vitamins C and E, zinc, copper and magnesium. As well as having a beneficial effect on your general health, antioxidants can also help you recover from sports training. Read on to learn the real deal about antioxidants.

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Bodycare
0121 444 0195
117 High Street, Kings Heath
Birmingham
 
Natures Health Shop
0121 708 2888
Swan Shopping Centre, Coventry Road
Birmingham
 
Holland & Barrett
0121 331 1599
23 Walsall Road, One Stop Retail Park, Perry Barr
Birmingham
 
Tropicana Health & Fitness
0121 351 3110
Forge Lane, Minworth Industrial Park
Sutton Coldfield
 
General Nutrition Centre
0121 633 8216
Unit 63, The Pallasades
Birmingham
 
Sage Wholefoods
0121 449 6909
148 Alcester Road
Birmingham
 
Holland & Barrett
0121 742 0313
2160 Coventry Road, Sheldon
Birmingham
 
Holland & Barrett
0121 382 9897
132 High Street
Birmingham
 
Holland & Barrett
0121 321 2439
31-57 The Lower Parade
Sutton Coldfield
 
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Why do I Need Antioxidants?

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What are they? Antioxidant supplements contain differing amounts of nutrients and plant extracts, including betacarotene, vitamins C and E, zinc, copper and magnesium. As well as having a beneficial effect on your general health, antioxidants can also help you recover from sports training.

What do they do? Very intense exercise, alongside smoking, sunburn, stress and pollution, can increase your body's generation of molecules known as free radicals, which can harm cell membranes, disrupt DNA and increase your risk of age-related diseases and cancer. There's some evidence that antioxidant supplements can protect against this, although some research suggests that supplements are less effective than getting antioxidants naturally as part of your diet. Evidence that they'll actually help your sports performance is harder to come by.

Who should take it? Though not everyone agrees with him, Gregg Marsh says, 'Due to our environment and stress levels, everyone should be on some type of antioxidant.' They work best if rotated, so for ten days you might use green tea, and for another ten days use grapeseed extract.'

How much should I take? 'The EU recommended daily amount for vitamin C is 60mg and for vitamin E 10mg,' says Anita Bean. 'But these are levels judged sufficient to support health, and a number of scientists believe they are too low.' Crucially, though, Bean says supplements are no substitute for proper nutrition: 'Aim to eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables daily - the more intense the colour, the higher the antioxidant content.' Including as many different coloured fruits and vegetables as possible ensures you get the widest variety of antioxidants.

When should I take them? This depends on the supplement you're taking and the effect you're looking for. 'Vitamin C is the antioxidant best taken after a workout because it blocks cortisol, the stress hormone,' says Marsh. A 2008 study suggested that antioxidants are most beneficial when taken with meals - rats fed red wine alongside meat ended up with fewer free radicals in their digestive tracts than their non-drinking siblings - but the evidence isn't conclusive.

Do they have any side effects? There are side effects related to excessive consumption of certain vitamins found in antioxidant supplements - massive amounts of carotene can turn your skin temporarily orange, for example. Also, the antioxidant minerals zinc, magnesium and copper - can be toxic in large doses. If you stick to the recommended dosage, though, you'll be fine.

Click on the links below to find out all you could possibly want to know about the other major supplements:

Protein
Creatine
Amino acids
Antioxidants
Fat burners
Lesser known supplements
Supplement FAQs

Why do I need antioxidants?

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