Did you know that we are constantly ingesting toxins? Toxins are present in the food, air, water, and even medication we intake.
While they may not be harmful as we ingest them, they go through a chemical reaction in the body called oxidation and produce toxins called free radicals. If left unchecked, these free radicals can damage healthy cells in the body and contribute to severe problems.
To counteract these free radicals, we can take antioxidants through food and supplements. These antioxidants inhibit the molecules from going through oxidation and producing free radicals. This helps prevent or slow down the damage to our cells.
In this article, we will run through how you can improve your antioxidant intake and optimize the body’s defense against toxins.
Sources of Antioxidants
Antioxidants can come from the food we eat or can be supplemented with vitamins. Some common vitamin sources of antioxidants include vitamin C and vitamin E. You can take these from food such as blueberries, tomatoes, turmeric, and even red wine.
Other than this food and vitamins, there is also an antioxidant that the body produces on its own. This is called glutathione which is also the body’s most potent antioxidant source. However, unlike other vitamins and supplements that you can ingest, glutathione in its plain form is hard to absorb.
The Functions of Glutathione
Glutathione has two essential functions:
- It detoxifies the liver by binding with the toxins and helping them move out of the body. This is also why an IV vitamin infusion of glutathione can help people who overdose on Tylenol.
- It also improves the function of the immune system and reduces inflammation as the glutathione takes the free radical damage in place of the healthy cells in the body.
What Happens When Your Glutathione Reserves Are Low?
You may be at risk of glutathione depletion if you are a part of any of these groups or have any of these health conditions:
- Older adults
- Overtraining athletes
- People with significant injuries and trauma
- Diseases such as HIV and AIDS
- Lung cancer
- Problems with one’s gut health such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- People with alcoholism and fatty liver disease
- Diabetes and low glucose tolerance
When the glutathione reserves in the body are too low, the free radical damage goes unchecked. This can lead to health conditions such as:
- Intestinal permeability
- Chemical and heavy metal sensitivities
- Autoimmune diseases
- Inflammatory and immune disorders
Supporting the Body’s Glutathione Levels
It may not be easy to maintain the body’s glutathione levels simply through a healthy diet. While over-the-counter glutathione supplements exist, they are not worth taking as they break down in the gut before they can even become helpful to the body.
Other forms of glutathione can be of help, such as:
- S-acetyl glutathione can be absorbed in the intestinal tract and helps manage autoimmune diseases.
- Oral liquid liposomal glutathione provides bioactive glutathione and glutathione precursors that stimulate the body to make glutathione inside the cells.
- Liposomal cream can be applied to areas of pain or inflammation.
- IV drip allows glutathione to enter the bloodstream directly and is highly effective.
Antioxidants are essential to counteract the cell damage caused by free radical toxins in the body. Glutathione is a powerful antioxidant that the body already produces on its own.
By supporting the body’s glutathione levels, you can improve your immune system, gut health, and overall well-being.
Are you looking for functional medicine Houston that offers detoxification and IV infusions of antioxidants? We at Balanced Body Functional Medicine provide various services to address your health issues. Head on to our website to learn more.