Best Antioxidants Foods!

Our bodies are battlegrounds against infection and diseases. Normal body functions such as breathing or physical activity and other lifestyle habits such as smoking produce substances called free radicals that attack healthy cells. When these healthy cells are weakened, they are more susceptible to cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancers. Antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E and carotenoids, which include beta-carotene, lycopene and lutein, help protect healthy cells from damage caused by free radicals.
The level of antioxidant capacity in a food is measured as Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC). ORAC values are measured per 100 grams of weight, or 3.5 ounces. Here are five high ORAC food types, which are best eaten fresh from organic sources.
1-Fruits and Berries: The Himalayan goji berry and tropical Acai berries rank highest with ORAC ratings of 25,000 and 18,000 units respectively. Blueberries, blackberries, cranberries, raspberries, pomegranates, and strawberries have high ORAC ratings.
Almost any berry will provide a good amount of antioxidants. Cherries and apples are top ORAC providers also. Deeper colors indicate richer antioxidant bioflavonoid content.
Dried fruits rank high as well. Raisins (dried grapes) come in with a 10,000 unit ORAC rating with prunes close behind at 8,000.
2-Vegetables: Cooked veggies that have greens leading, especially spinach, kale, and broccoli. Artichokes have the highest ORAC rating, between 9,000 and 10,000. A surprise entry is the Russet potato.
3-Legumes: Black beans and kidney beans have the highest ORAC ratings. It’s best to buy them dry from bulk organic bins, soak them overnight and cook the next day. Legumes also provide a good deal of fiber to help your digestion.
4-Nuts and grains: Pecans have the highest ORAC rating at 18,000, with walnuts and almonds following. Steel cut oats are high in antioxidants along with quinoa and whole grains.
5-Miscellaneous: Chocolate and coffee lovers rejoice, they are both high ORAC foods. Chocolate should be unprocessed, dark and high in cacao content. Cacao, the basis of chocolate, has an ORAC rating over 50,000 per 100 grams. Coffee is between 15,000 and 18,000 ORAC units .