Monday, March 7, 2011

Antioxidants Can Harm You: Free Radicals Neutralized Perform Valuable Functions

Tags: Antioxidants Free Radical Elimination Craze Over Research Shows Harm Potential

I have been urging my readers for years that taking excess antioxidants by way of supplements is dangerous to our health. Finally my common sense has been supported by extensive research.

As I just told my mailman Mike today, do not depend on others, even doctors, Big Pharma, Professors, and others completely for your health needs. Good judgement, however, requires some basic knowledge about how our body and brain functions. This is especially true today when so many professors, stock brokers, investments advisors, fund managers, doctors, and others have their own conflicts of interest which prevents them from telling you the whole truth including commercials, television news, newspapers and magazines.

By keeping your brain engaged, you will eventually learn whom to trust more than others. Garbage in, garbage out. Assume everyone lies or distorts facts including myself!

Yes, I said to my readers that many times that our body uses free radicals to fight bacteria, virus, and fungus which invade our body. No one listened.

Jim Kawakami, March 7, 2011,

Antioxidants Fall from Grace: The Popular Dietary Components May Not Do Any Good, and May Actually Do Harm Sharon Begley Newsweek, Jan 25, 2011,

To anyone who feels guilty for not gorging on antioxidants—actually, make that “antioxidants!,” which seems to be how grocery manufacturers think of them—redemption is nigh. For years the media, food labels, dietitians, and even scientists who should know better have bombarded us with advice to load up on antioxidants: compounds found (mostly) in fruits and vegetables that mop up free radicals, which are highly reactive clusters of atoms that have been fingered as the evildoers responsible for aging and for illnesses from cancer to heart disease.

Not so fast. First, studies piled up showing that taking antioxidants—even such common and seemingly innocuous ones as beta carotene and vitamins C and E—as supplements was not beneficial to health and might even be dangerous, though the reason for the danger wasn’t clear. (One always pays attention when a study concludes with a phrase like “seems to increase overall mortality.”)

Now the research is challenging an even more fundamental tenet of the antioxidant craze. Many of the free radicals that are neutralized by antioxidants perform valuable functions in the body. The most important: fighting toxins (white blood cells churn out free radicals by the battalion to fight bacterial infection) and fighting cancer.

Maybe it’s not such a fabulous idea to flood the body with something that neutralizes these warriors of the immune system. Or as British chemist and science writer David Bradley noted in his blog, Reactive Reports, “It’s always struck me as odd that you would want to ingest extra antioxidants anyway, given that oxidising agents are at the front-line of immune defence against pathogens and cancer cells ... Suffice to say that taking antioxidant supplements ... may not necessarily be good for your health if you already have health problems,” especially cancer or an infection. ... Lots more at: Read the whole article. Newsweek and Bloomberg Business Week quite good.

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