an Alternative to Natural Health
Nature's Sunshine Products
Antioxidants, Neutralize Free Radicals, Slow the Aging Process, Prevent Chronic and Degenerative Diseases
Medical research has identified free radical damage as an underlying cause of premature aging and many chronic and degenerative diseases. Free radicals have been implicated in the pathogenesis of at least 50 diseases.
Free radicals are molecules that are missing electrons. Since these compounds are "hungry" for electrons they "steal" them from other compounds, such as cell membranes, DNA or other cellular components. This diminishes the tissues that have been robbed of electrons, causing them to steal electrons continuing the damage. This process is known as oxidation.
The body uses controlled oxidation to burn carbohydrates, fats and proteins, releasing the energy stored in them for cellular functions. The body uses oxidation to destroy invading microbes as part of the immune response.
As long as oxidation is controlled, it is a useful part of the process of life. Free radicals cause oxidation to spin out of control damaging life. You see this process at work when you cut into an apple and it turns brown. Oxidation or free radical damage causes the apple to start to decay.
A Rainbow of Antioxidants
Plants are subject to free radical damage, so they protect themselves by producing a lot of antioxidants. When we eat these plants, we get the benefit of those antioxidants. That's why most nutritional experts agree that eating 5 to 7 one-half cup servings of fresh fruits and vegetables is one of the things anyone may do to improve their health.
The beautiful colors of fresh produce are primarily the result of antioxidant compounds. By eating a "rainbow" of brightly colored fruits, vegetables and herbs, we are providing the body with a wide variety of protective antioxidants.
When an antioxidant donates an electron to a free radical, it will remain stable for a while, but it is now missing an electron. The antioxidant will diminish and become a free radical unless a more powerful antioxidant comes along and donates an electron to it. Antioxidants need to be refreshed or recycled.
Nature does this by pairing multiple antioxidants together. In plants, vitamin C is always found in combination with bioflavonoids. Bioflavonoids are antioxidants, which help to replenish Vitamin C. The vitamin C in Rose Hips, oranges and other foods has a more powerful effect on health than isolated vitamin C, because the other nutrients found with it act synergistically to protect the body.
Xanth is Latin for yellow, which is why yellow colored antioxidants have names like violaxanthin, betaxanthin and zeaxanthin. Violaxanthin is universally found in green leaves and is found in many yellow vegetables. It has anticancer properties and is part of why eating green, leafy vegetables helps prevent cancer.
Beta is the Latin name for beets, so betaxanthin is an antioxidant that gives yellow beets their color. Its highest source an herb called purslane.
Zea is Latin for corn, so zeaxanthin is a major pigment in yellow corn. Zeaxanthin is found in orange peppers and leafy vegetables like spinach, kale and collard greens.
Zeaxanthin and an antioxidant pigment called Lutein are extremely important antioxidants for the eyes. The name lutein comes from the Latin lutea, a word for the yellow-orange color. Both zeaxanthin and lutein are essential for the health of the macula at the back of the eye. The portion of the macula where light falls on the eye is colored yellow by these two pigments, which is why it is called the macula lutea. These antioxidant pigments protect the eye from ultraviolet (UV) radiation damage, which can help to prevent macular degeneration, a common cause of blindness. Both of these yellow antioxidants are found in the formula Perfect Eyes, a combination of antioxidant nutrients to protect the eyes.
Many orange-colored foods, such as carrots, apricots, peaches and sweet potatoes, get their color from carotenes or carotenoids. These precursors to Vitamin A are found in collards, kale, spinach, pumpkins, chard, winter squash and tomatoes. They are powerful antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic compounds. They help to protect the health of the lungs, eyes, cardiovascular system and the skin.
Two more orange pigments with antioxidant properties are cryptoxanthin found in oranges, peaches, mangos, papaya and tangerines and curcumin from turmeric. Curcumin is a powerful antioxidant that reduces inflammation, protecting the liver, brain and cardiovascular system from damage. It inhibits cancer cell formation, stimulates bile production, aids liver detoxification and helps the body fight infection. It is helpful for reducing pain associated with inflammation in osteoarthritis and other chronic inflammatory diseases. CurcuminBP is a concentrated extract of this compound from turmeric with black pepper to aid its' absorption.
One of the known red pigments is the antioxidant lycopene. Lycopene makes tomatoes red and is found in guava, watermelon, pink grapefruit and dried apricots. Research suggests that lycopene may help prevent cancer, especially cancers of the prostate, lung and stomach. Lycopene is an important ingredient in Men's Formula, which helps protect prostate health and is found in Brain Protex an antioxidant blend for protecting brain tissue from free radical damage. Brain Protex may be a good antioxidant supplement for people who want to avoid losing their memory and mental ability as they age.
Red peppers contain the antioxidants capsanthin and capsorubin. These are very stable antioxidants derived from violaxanthin as peppers ripen, and contribute to the health benefits of Capsicum.
Anthocyanins are red antioxidants which change color with pH. They are pink or red in an acidic environment and then turn blue in an alkaline environment. In plants, they are "blue blockers," filtering out ultra-violet (UV) light and protecting tissues from UV damage. Bright light stimulates anthocyanin production in plants.
Blue and Purple Antioxidants
Blueberries and bilberries are rich in blue-colored anthocyanins. These antioxidant compounds have become famous for their ability to improve night vision and protect blood vessels from inflammation. Bilberries, a key ingredient in Perfect Eyes, are used to strengthen veins and capillaries and to protect the eyes.
Purple anthocyan ins give color to eggplants, grapes, elderberries and black currents. Found in combination with these purple compounds are colorless antioxidant nutrients called proanthocyanidins. Proanthocyanidins are condensed tannins (tannins create astringency in herbs) that are potent antioxidants. Proanthocyanidins are found in red wine, grape skins and seeds, elderberries, blueberries, cranberries, hawthorn, ginkgo and green tea.
The most famous of these compounds are oligomeric proanthoyanidins or OPCs. These short chains of flavonols such as catechin are found in pine bark and grape seeds. They are available in the formulas Grapine with Protectors and High Potency Grapine and have been used for arthritis, auto-immune disorders, macular degeneration and protection from environmental toxins.
Thai Go is a blend of fruit juices and other botanical ingredients that are rich in naturally occurring antioxidants such as polyphenols, flavonoids, xanthones and vitamin C. The key ingredients in Thai Go is mangosteen, a tropical fruit high in xanthones, antioxidant compounds that are also antibiotic, antiviral, anti-allergenic and anti-inflammatory.
Thai Go contains wolfberries known as goji berries or lycium. These berries because of their antioxidant activity are a major Chinese tonic herb. They have a cooling quality of reducing fever, sweating, irritability and thirst.
Thai-Go supplies proanthocyanins in the form of grape skin and seed extracts and anthocyanins from blueberries. Green tea extract, rich in antioxidants called polyphenols, provides further protection from free radical damage. Other ingredients in Thai Go include sea buckthorn, rich in vitamin C, red raspberry, apple and Concord grape.
Thai Go has a certified ORAC value (ORAC is a measurement of something's ability to neutralize free radicals) and has the highest ORAC value of any product of its kind. It can help protect the cardiovascular system, boost immunity, reduce allergic reactions, reduce inflammation and more.
Super ORAC - For those who don't want to take a liquid formula, Super ORAC has some of the same benefits as Thai-Go in capsule form. It contains mangosteen extract, turmeric root, polyphenols from green tea, acai berries and more.
Super Antioxidant - This encapsulated antioxidant product contains tocotrienols, lycopene, alpha lipoic acid, rose hips, milk thistle and turmeric. Super Antioxidant helps protect the body against free radical damage and assists in the process of liver detoxification to help remove toxic chemicals from the body. It may be a good formula to use if you are frequently exposed to chemicals.
Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) - Most antioxidants are either water or fat-soluble. Alpha Lipoic Acid is both, making its protective powers available to all of the cells in the body This is why ALA is called the universal antioxidant, as it can protect the integrity of the cell membrane, while offsetting cellular stress. ALA protects nerve cells and promotes mitochondrial activity to keep your body and its tissues young. It helps support the body's natural removal of toxins by aiding detoxification pathways in the liver.
CoQ-10 - is a vitamin like substance present in every cell in the body. It is vital for cellular energy, cardiovascular health and longevity. CoQ-10 is required for energy production in the mitochondria of the cell where carbohydrates and fatty acids are converted into energy (ATP). As an antioxidant CoQ-10 scavenges free radicals, reducing oxidative stress on cells throughout the body, but it is helpful for the heart and cardiovascular system. It protects cardiac cells, prevents lipid oxidation and promotes the regeneration of Vitamin E, another antioxidant important for the cardiovascular system.
An important sign that a person might benefit from CoQ-10 is gingivitis or gum disease. There is a high correlation between inflammation of the gums and inflammation of the arteries, which promotes the formation of arterial plaque. CoQ-10 reduces this inflammation, helping both the gums and the arteries to heal.
Green Tea Extract contains catechins, a type of polyphenol with powerful antioxidant effects. This is a decaffeinated, standardized extract that concentrates these polyphenols, giving you the antioxidant equivalent of ten cups of green tea in just three capsules. These polyphenols are 200 times stronger than vitamin E in neutralizing free radicals. Green Tea Extract helps normalize vascular blood clotting and total cholesterol levels as well as having antimicrobial properties.
There are many other antioxidant supplements available. It isn't necessary or beneficial to take all of them. Pick the one or two that are best suited to your needs and obtain the rest of the antioxidants you need from your diet.