From your first breath to your last and for each microsecond in between , there are battles being fought in every system in you . There are literally millions of these battles happening at the same time and they have free radicals on one hand and antioxidants on the other . They affect how long you live , your vulnerability to many different medical conditions and without question the quality of your life and health as a senior citizen .
Your brain is very vulnerable to oxidative stress because although it only accounts for about 2% of your mass of your body , about 20% of the oxygen you take in is used in your brain. Oxy or free radicals – damaged oxygen molecules are caused by many different things , but one cause is a natural and inevitable by-product of metabolizing oxygen . Since twenty percent of your oxygen intake goes to your brain, it stands to reason that the cells in your brain will be subjected to many free radicals.
Inside your head is a major concentration of naturally occurring molecules called Lipids. Lipids include waxes, fats, sterols and a seletion of fat soluble vitamins like A, D, E and K. Lipids act as signaling molecules and are uses for energy storage and are structural components of your cell membranes. Lipid peroxidation is the name for free radical damage to Lipids and a reason for the importance of Antioxidant supplements .
The best defense against Lipid peroxidation in the brain is with antioxidants and in particular a small subset referred to as Network Antioxidants or the Antioxidant Network , including Vitamins E, C CoEnzymeQ10, Lipolic acid and Glutathione . Network Antioxidants help each other to clear out free radicals in the brain and they are uniquely able to repair each other . Of the Network Antioxidants, the most important is Glutathione a.k.a. The Master Antioxidant. Glutathione is naturally produced by your body and can be found in each and every cell.
Unfortunately , your brain maintains lower levels of Glutathione than other parts of your body and as you grow older , the average supply is further depleted since the ability to produce Glutathione falls by around 10% for every decade after our 20’s . But the brain absolutely requires Glutathione to stay healthy. For example, consider the role that Antioxidants play in connection with Alzheimer’s Disease – or senile dementia.
There is a powerful link between Alzheimer’s and aluminum . In an August 2009 study conducted on laboratory rats , two same sized groups were purposely given aluminum toxins, but one of those groups was also supplemented with oxyradicals scavengers. The first group had a dramatic increase in lipid peroxidation and developed oxidative stress – which is the result of rampant free radical damage. Reduced Glutathione and other network antioxidants were also measured . For the group that was provided with the toxins along with the free radical scavengers, none of these changes were measured .
With the brain’s vulnerability to the creation of free radicals an abundant store of antioxidants ( especially Network Antioxidants and most specifically , Glutathione) is key to enjoying a healthy and functioning brain. While oral glutathione supplements are not considered to be effective, you can take a glutathione precursor like MaxGXL .