Fighting Free Radicals
By: Dr. Linda East
South Penn Cat Clinic
What are free radicals? You may have read about them recently in connection with the aging process and with degenerative diseases, such as cancer, heart disease, arthritis and allergies. These diseases are caused by the same process that makes oil go rancid, a cut apple turn brown, and iron to rust.
A free radical is simply an oxygen molecule that for some reason has lost one of its electrons. It then seeks to replace the missing electron by robbing one from some other molecule. This is oxidation, and your body is full of hundreds of billions of free radicals attacking your healthy cells all the time.
Free radicals come from a number of places. Normal cellular metabolism produces them as a waste product. Poor-quality food, chemicals and pollutants in our air and water and, day-to-day stress also contribute. Radiation produces free radicals, leading to cancer.
The body has ways to neutralize free radicals by the use of "antioxidants." A highly effective antioxidant is the enzyme combination of superoxide dismutase ("SOD") and catalase ("CAT"). These two enzymes and produced in the cells of all species. The body’s ability to produce SOD decreases with age, so sparing the body’s enzyme "bank" by consuming raw foods that are rich in enzymes helps fight free radicals.
The body also relies on the intake of antioxidants such as vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta carotene. Nature intended that the body receive these disease fighters in its food, providing a balance between cellular waste with its free radicals and the neutralizing antioxidants. But modern-day diets, especially for our animals, does not provide this protection.
One solution is to take SOD and CAT supplements. The most effective are derived from specially grown wheat sprouts. These are whole foods and contain both "live" enzymes and all the nutritional co-factors needed for complete utilization. These supplements are very helpful for arthritis (which is free radicals attacking the joints) and other geriatric degenerative problems. Relief of free radical toxins also promotes vitality and speeds healing after injury or surgery. These enzymes are food products, not drugs, and never have harmful side effects.
Rather than treating degenerative problems with steroids and other drugs, we can instead rely on these simple effective whole food antioxidants that work in harmony with the body assisting it in its daily routine, helping alleviate pain, discomfort, and disease.