Too many free radicals in the body may be bad, but they do play a positive role in exercise.
Large doses of antioxidants can cancel out the effects of free radicals and, in turn, reduce the benefits of your workout, said Ms Ng Puay Shi, a senior dietitian at Tan Tock Seng Hospital’s nutrition and dietetics department.
Free radicals operate as signalling molecules. They appear to regulate many physiological processes and functions. Taking antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E, may hamper muscle adaptation, said Ms Ng.
Studies have even shown that such supplements decrease the production of mitochondria, which generates energy in our cells.
It is not advisable to consume antioxidants in the form of supplements as they often contain high doses, said Ms Ng.
Eat two servings of fruit and veggies daily to meet your antioxidant needs instead.
Text by Mind & Body, Straits Times. Image: IThinkstock