Finding Antioxidants at Fordham

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ISABELLE DALBY/THE OBSERVER

Rich in Vitamin C, berries a great source of antioxidants.

By AIZA BHUIYAN, Assistant Sports & Health Editor

In the last decade, antioxidants have been extensively marketed to health-conscious individuals. However, the science behind how antioxidants work and what they do is largely unknown to these consumers. People often opt to buy a product advertised as antioxidant-rich over one that is antioxidant-deficient. 

Succinctly put, we know antioxidants are good for us, but we don’t know why. 

Antioxidants are a variety of substances that counteract oxidative stress in our cells. They prevent free radical-induced cellular damage that is linked to heart disease, cancer, arthritis, stroke, respiratory diseases, immune deficiency and neurological disorders

Free radicals are highly unstable molecules produced in our cells when we exercise and digest our food. They are created when oxygen molecules in our body split into single atoms that have a nuclear predisposition to bind with other molecules in our cells, including proteins and DNA, which in turn damage them. 

Contrary to popular belief, studies have shown that the best way to incorporate antioxidants into your diet is by consuming foods that are rich in them, rather than taking supplements. One plausible reason for this is antioxidant supplements are thought to lack the other essential nutrients found in antioxidant-rich foods that prevent molecular damage in cells. 

Here at Fordham College at Lincoln Center, the Ram Cafeé and Argo Tea provide a variety of options to help you include antioxidants in your meals. 

At the Ram Cafeé, you can order smoothies rich in essential antioxidants like Vitamin C and Vitamin E. The Bangin’ Berry, Vegan Power Up and Acçai Energy are made with an abundance of antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables. 

Additionally, you can create your own salad full of these nutrients. Mixing the leafy greens, bell peppers, eggs, corn, legumes and cheese offered in the Ram Cafeé will result in a vitamin-rich recipe. Generally, the more colorful and vibrant your salad looks, the more likely antioxidants are to be in it. 

At Argo Tea, the Matcha Vanilla and Green Tea Ginger Twist teas are two flavorful options you can order to increase your antioxidant intake. They also sell the Pomegranate Pistachio Raw Bar and Chia Blueberry Raw Bar which are plentiful in these nutrients.

The general consensus of antioxidants being beneficial to your health is rightly pointed. As long as you are incorporating them in your meals through natural sources, antioxidants are great agents for maintaining a healthy diet.