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Amazing Proof: Taking Antioxidants Slows Aging

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Here’s exciting new proof that taking keeps you younger, according to Tufts University research.

Women ages 50-70 who took 3 antioxidant supplements–beta carotene, lutein and lycopene–for two months showed dramatically less DNA damage to cells than those who took a dummy pill, and the benefits kicked in after 15 days!

This is big and important stuff. It’s well-known that aging and chronic diseases, such as cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s, are largely caused by damage to cells’ DNA. The damage is caused by “free radical chemicals,” formed during normal metabolism, and taken in through toxins in the environment, such as smoke.

The more accumulated damage in cells, the faster you age and the higher the odds of chronic diseases–from cataracts to cancer. If you can lessen cell damage,  you slow down the entire aging process.

And that’s the miracle of small doses of beta carotene, lutein and lycopene in this study. A mixture of 4 mg of each, 12 mg total, cut DNA damage in cells an amazing 29%. Also, 12 mg of each antioxidant alone worked. Lycopene and lutein were more powerful , reducing DNA damage 28% and 31% respectively. cut damage 10%.

Researchers point out you can get these anti-aging doses from eating lots of fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, spinach and tomatoes. But how well they are absorbed differs greatly among individuals.

The more compelling message: Why risk aging prematurely when  you can slash the odds one-third by simply taking the antioxidants that worked in this study?

That’s the best insurance against aging– along with eating your fruits and vegetables. (Source: Xianfeng, Z: Am J Clin Nutr 2006;83:163-9)

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Article updated on: January 29th, 2006

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