The source of aging: oxidative stress
Oxidative stress can be seen when cutting open an apple: oxygen atoms react with the flesh, it turns brown and it decays (quickly). The human body is also under constant pressure of oxidative stress. It is inextricably linked to the metabolism of the human body. If we just let this happen without doing anything about it, it causes more and more symptoms of old age and decay, such as stiff muscles, wrinkled skin and all kinds of old-age illness related to chronic inflammation. It also seems to be the basis for all kinds of serious and deadly diseases.
How does oxidative stress work?
Our body consists of cells. These cells generate the energy with which we can move our bodies, and do everything that makes up our lives. To generate this energy, all kinds of biochemical processes take place in the cells of our body. In addition to energy, these processes also produce the inevitable waste: free radicals. The body sometimes struggles to clear all of these free radicals, which causes them to accumulate. An excess of free radicals is very harmful to the organism. At one point, these accumulated free radicals start causing oxidative stress. This oxidative stress is the basis of chronic inflammation in the body, which in turn underlies all sorts of (old-age) ailments – many of which can even occur at an early age – and chronic diseases.
Who are the free radicals that are causing all these problems?
A free radical is simply a molecule that, due to outside influence, loses electrons from its outer ring. This creates an odd number of electrons, which causes the molecule to get a positive (or negative) charge. It then tries to steal electrons from any molecule it happens to encounter. These molecules also become unstable, become free radicals themselves, and in turn rob electrons of other surrounding molecules. This can cause a chain reaction that disrupts the whole cell. This reaction transfers from the damaged cell to other cells. This way, a large number of cells can be disrupted and made ill very quickly. This process also has use-cases. The immune system uses it to defuse unwanted intruders. This process is also indispensable for converting air and food into chemical energy.
Different types of free radicals
So free radicals are inevitable by-products of the biochemical processes in our body. An important cause is the inhalation of oxygen. Oxygen is indispensable for life, and for the process of generating energy. A small part of the oxygen you breathe, however, is not being used, and turns into free radicals. The creation of free radicals has many other causes. Substances that cause free radicals are found in what we eat and drink, the medication we take, the air we breathe and the water we drink. These substances include fried foods, alcohol, tobacco smoke, pesticides, and harmful substances in the air and in our drinking water. Stress also makes a big contribution to the formation of free radicals.
The dangers of free radicals
The body continuously works hard to defuse the free radicals with the help of antioxidants. However, if too many free radicals are formed, causing too much cellular damage, oxidative stress occurs. Then the body cannot keep up with it. Several studies show that oxidative stress plays a role in the development of many disorders, including cardiovascular disease, certain cancers, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, ulcers, and chronic inflammation which expresses as arthritis and other rheumatic diseases. Free radicals are therefore also associated with (early) aging.
The free-radical theory of aging states that we age as a result of free radical damage over time. Free radicals can damage the instruction code in the DNA, causing new cells to grow ‘incorrectly’, which leads to aging.
Symptoms of oxidative stress
Science has not yet officially recognized symptoms of oxidative stress. It is also still difficult to determine the amount of free radicals that are present in the body at any given time. Yet different symptoms are linked to the presence of free radicals and the oxidative stress they cause, including:
Muscle and joint pain
Now you might think, “what a misery, free radicals are everywhere, no escape is possible!” But there is definitely something you can do!
The solution: antioxidants
Antioxidants are substances that can be ingested through food and supplements. They are mainly found in the foods that are so disliked by children, such as broccoli, artichoke, sauerkraut and sour fruits. Fortunately also in chocolate, but only the pure (> 70%) variant. And in nuts, but only the raw variety.
What does an antioxidant do?
We now know that free radicals have become unstable because they lack electrons, and that they then rob them from other molecules, which in turn become free radicals, and do the same. This produces a chain reaction and causes a lot of damage to the body in the long run. This process happens continuously. And this is where antioxidants come into play. Antioxidants are in fact substances that have spare electrons, as it were, that they can donate to the free radicals, without becoming unstable themselves! This makes antioxidants very special and beneficial. Antioxidants are natural substances that aim to clear the free radicals in the cells of our body. The perfect auxiliary troops to help our body in times when it is exposed to all kinds of unhealthy substances and environments.
Different antioxidants have a different effects
There are many types of free radicals and also many types of antioxidants. People often mistakenly think that all antioxidants are the same, and that all free radicals can be rendered harmless with one type of antioxidant. However, there are many different types of antioxidants that each have their own function. They can be divided into enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidants, water-soluble (hydrophilic) and fat-soluble (lipid) antioxidants, and small-molecule antioxidants and large-molecule antioxidants. Some antioxidants have additional functions, such as repairing damaged molecules or limiting the negative influence of heavy metals. Some examples of known antioxidants are vitamin C, E, flavonoids, carotene and curcumin. Less known are the C60 in olive oil antioxidant, and hydrogen water as antioxidant, but these promise to be much stronger than the known antioxidants. It is important that you get enough of the full spectrum of antioxidants.
Many people, even when they are adults, are all too fond of deep-fried and high-sugar foods. Unfortunately, these foods are very poor in antioxidants. We also see that many people suffer from a variety of symptoms and diseases, which can be traced back to oxidative damage caused by free radicals. Fortunately, many people are aware of the need for healthy living habits such as healthy and moderate eating and drinking, quitting smoking and sufficient physical activity. But even then, given the toxic environment in which many of us live and work, it is still difficult to get enough, and especially the right antioxidants through the diet. As a result, many people make sure they get extra antioxidants through supplements.
Special antioxidants: C60 in olive oil and hydrogen water
The antioxidant effect of C60 in olive oil and hydrogen water was discovered some time ago. Both substances have very special properties. Studies show that the effects of these two substances, especially in the field of oxygen radicals, appears to be many times stronger than those of the already known antioxidants such as vitamins C and E. They are therefore associated with life-extension.
C60 in olive oil
C60 in olive oil has special properties, which make it a super antioxidant. C60 with olive oil as a carrier, exchanges electrons with free radicals. It can donate electrons to free radicals that have a shortage, and accept electrons from free radicals that have a surplus. What’s so special about C60 in olive oil (or avocado oil) is that it stays in the body for 24 to 36 hours to exchange electrons with free radicals, WITHOUT becoming unstable or changing its structure itself. That is why it is also said that C60 in olive oil is a recyclable antioxidant. Herein lies the greatest strength of C60 in olive oil. Some studies suggest that C60 in olive oil can cross the blood-brain barrier. This links C60 in olive oil to Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
Hydrogen water as an antioxidant is also very effective
Hydrogen water is water enriched with hydrogen gas (H2). This hydrogen in water acts as a powerful antioxidant. It helps to neutralize free oxygen radicals, which contribute to the development of diseases, inflammation and aging. Water is essential for life. It is formed by the combination of oxygen (a powerful oxidizer) and hydrogen (a powerful reducing agent). Numerous studies show that hydrogen-rich water is absorbed in the intestine within one minute, and the hydrogen molecules spread throughout the body within 10 minutes.
It therefore works very effectively in removing free radicals and preventing cellular damage. Every sip of hydrogen water will fill your body with countless hydrogen molecules. The big advantage of hydrogen as an antioxidant is the size of the hydrogen molecule. Unlike many other antioxidants, hydrogen can easily get into all the body cells and mitochondria, thus defusing the most difficult-to-reach free radicals. As a natural antioxidant, molecular hydrogen is therefore the most effective of all known antioxidants, for the capture and neutralization of toxic free oxygen radicals.