ANTIOXIDANTS

4 KIDS

  

Natural immune boosting tools are available from foods in the

form of antioxidants. Antioxidants are the vitamins A, C and E

and some phytonutrients found in breast milk, fruits,

vegetables, whole grains, juices, nuts and seeds.

 

When teaching kids about antioxidants, it's crucial to provide age-appropriate information. While your preschooler may not be able to understand what free radicals are, she may get the idea if you describe antioxidants as vitamin "superheroes" who fight the chemical "bad guys" that try to make you sick.

 

Young children, especially, are drawn to bright colors and interesting shapes and textures; bell peppers, berries, watermelon, red cabbage, sweet potatoes and carrots are all examples of vividly hued, antioxidant-rich foods that children may enjoy seeing, touching and tasting.

 

ORAC stands for Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity. This is just a fancy way of saying, “How well does a certain food help my body fight diseases like cancer and heart disease?”. The higher the ORAC number, the greater the amount of antioxidants in the food.

 

Studies show that the average child gets only about 1000 ORAC units per day from 3 servings of fruits and vegetables. However 3,000 to 5,000 ORAC units per day are required to have a significant impact on plasma and tissue antioxidant capacity.