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Foods With the Most Antioxidants

Antioxidant Content of Common Foods

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Updated May 23, 2014

Antioxidants are one of the most important substances in foods. Ever wonder which vegetables are the healthiest? This is a good question that is surprisingly hard to find an answer to. One way to look at the health value of a food is to learn its antioxidant level.

Antioxidants are substances found in plants that help protect them. Plants are exposed to a lot of sunlight, which can cause damage to cells (and your skin, causing skin cancer, by the way). The antioxidants in plants repair that damage. When we eat plants that have large amounts of antioxidants, our bodies can use those same substances to repair damage to our own cells. This is a good thing. Basically, antioxidants are nature's anti-aging medicine -- they help prevent cancer, heart disease and countless other illnesses.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture conducted a study foods commonly eaten in the United States and to determine the levels of antioxidants in them. Here is a list of some of the foods with the most anti-aging, body-repairing power:

Sources:

Xianli Wu, Gary R. Beecher, Joanne M. Holden, David B. Haytowitz, Susan E. Gebhardt, and Ronald L. Prior. "Lipophilic and Hydrophilic Capacities of Common Foods in the United States." J. Agric. Food Chem., 52 (12), 4026-4037, 2004.

Antiodixant Levels of Common Foods

FOOD PORTION ANTIOXIDANT LEVEL
dried red beans 1/2 cup 13727
wild blueberries 1 cup 13427
dried red kidney bean 1/2 cup 13259
pinto beans 1/2 cup 11864
blueberries 1 cup 9019
whole cranberries 1 cup 8983
cooked artichoke hearts 1 cup 7904
blackberries 1 cup 7701
prunes 1/2 cup 7291
raspberries 1 cup 6085
strawberries 1 cup 5938
red delicious apples 1 apple 5900
granny smith apples 1 apple 5381
pecans 1 ounce 5095
sweet cherries 1 cup 4873
black plum 1 4844
cooked Russet potato 1 4649
dried black beans 1/2 cup 4181
plum 1 4118
gala apple 1 3903

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