What's the idea behind antioxidants in our food?

What is an antioxidant?
Sounds like something to go against oxidation right? That is right!
Antioxidants in our bodies help protect our cells.
Antioxidants in our food protect oils from becoming rancid or rotten and help keep bread, cookies, crackers, and other packaged foods fresh and tasty.

The job of antioxidants in food is for:
  • Taste
  • Freshness
  • Safety
  • Keep natural food color
  • Food waste reduction
Do you look for labels that state Preservative free? Antioxidants are a type of preservative and can occur naturally or synthetically. So, maybe it's not really preservative free??? Like an orange has antioxidants.

This is a fun video to watch-it's quick.
Pay attention, this guy talks fast. I mean fast, but you can watch it again. It's a perfect info video on antioxidants. Now you know.

So, how can we keep our food fresh and safe to eat?
Refrigeration, canning, freezing, and antioxidants.
There are naturally occurring antioxidants in food and also synthetic antioxidants.

Examples of natural antioxidants:
Vitamin E is found in leafy green vegetables, so is Alpha-tocoperol, (that's Vitamin E's fancy name).
Vitamin C is found in citrus, so is Ascorbic Acid (that's Vitamin C's fancy name).

When you read the ingredient list on the food package and see scientific words, they could be natural or man made. Don't let those big words scare you off.

Examples of man made antioxidants:
BHT-added to grains based foods like cookies to help maintain freshness
TBHQ-tasteless, colorless, and added to vegetable oils, foods that are fried, and other packaged food. These are used instead natural antioxidants so your crackers don't taste like oranges if Vitamin C was used as a antioxidant.

Although these are synthetic, the compound sources are sometiomes found in nature to make these antioxidants.
These compounds have been in use for 60 years in the food industry and must be food grade, as referenced by the FDA.

As part of a balanced diet, natural and man made antioxidants are safe for your food and body, helping to maintain taste and freshness of your food.

Disclousre: This is a sponsored post with The Motherhood. I participated in  ConAgra Foods Virtual Briefing. The comments and views are my own. This post is not for advice on your own helath.  #anitoxidantfacts