Spices Have the Most Antioxidants of All Foods, New Research Confirms

A recently published research paper proves yet again that culinary herbs and spices have the highest antioxidant content of all food groups.

Published in the January 2010 edition of the Nutrition Journal, the multinational authors of the study analyzed over 3100 different foods from around the world and found that culinary herbs and spices have the highest antioxidant content of all foods.

Some of the food groups that they analyzed included berries, beverages, cereals, chocolates, seafood, fruit, grains, herbal medicines, legumes, meat, nuts and seeds, spices and herbs, vegetables and dietary supplements.

Commenting on their results they observed that: "Spices and herbs include the most antioxidant rich products in our study, some exceptionally high."
The analysis found that the culinary herbs and spices that have the greatest antioxidant content were clove, allspice, peppermint, cinnamon, oregano, thyme, sage and rosemary.

Moreover the average antioxidant activity of spices was 300% higher than that of berries, 2300% greater than that of other fruit, 3600% higher than that of vegetables and 600% more than that of nuts.

These result back up a similar study published in the July 2006 edition of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. In this earlier, smaller survey culinary herbs and spices were also found to have the highest antioxidant content of all food types.

The authors of the 2010 study go on to suggest that in respect of plant based antioxidant compounds, "We suggest that both their numerous individual functions as well as their combined additive or synergistic effects are crucial to their health beneficial effects...."

And: "It is hypothesized that antioxidants originating from foods may work as antioxidants in their own right as well as bring about beneficial health effects through other mechanisms, including acting as inducers of mechanisms related to antioxidant defense, longevity, cell maintenance and DNA repair."
The conclusions that they draw suggest that a variety of antioxidant-rich plant foods should be consumed and propose that such dietary diversity will boost the synergistic and additive effects of the beneficial, bioactive compounds in these foods.

Unfortunately many health professionals still believe that a few antioxidant vitamins such as vitamins A, C, E and beta-carotene are all that we need to counter antioxidant stress and free radical damage to our bodies.
This could not be further from the truth as several studies have shown that taking high doses of a few antioxidant vitamins can actually be harmful.
Logic and scientific evidence tells us that a diet that includes a variety of effective plant based antioxidants is an essential part of a balanced diet. And spices are the best source of these and other beneficial compounds.
The results of the survey, and several of the conclusions drawn by its authors, support the concept of a diet or (for those who do not eat highly spiced food) a dietary supplement that includes a significant quantity and variety of culinary herbs and spices.

Find these high antioxidant spices on Amazon:


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