Heal Yourself At Home
Body's NON-Enzymatic Antioxidants

(2)  Non-enzymatic Antioxidants


Major water-soluble Antioxidants

Major Fat-soluble Antioxidants



Major Water-Soluble Antioxidants


Protect aqueous areas (most of the cell's cytoplasm) from oxidation


      Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid/Ascorbate) 


-       Nutritional requirement – since the human body can not make it (mainly obtained from fruits and vegetables). It is largely destroyed by high heat and extended freezing (> 2 months), but dissolves in cooking water, and is thus somewhat retained in soup.


-       Chelating (metal grabbing) and Reducing Agent (radical scavenging – donates electrons to superoxide, hydrogen peroxide, hypochlorite, hydroxyl radicals, peroxyl radicals, ozone and nitrous oxide).


-       Recycles vitamin E (re-reduces vitamin E radical back to vitamin E).


-       Needed for the production of Collagen and Elastin - Involved in the formation of hydroxyproline, a major component of tissue collagen, which is the most abundant protein in our body. Collagen provides the scaffolding for, and is the main component of cartilage, ligaments, tendons and other connective tissue - the reason why broken bones regenerate and wounds heal. It is the main protein in bone and teeth. It strengthens blood vessels, preventing atherosclerosis, and along with keratin, it is responsible for skin strength and elasticity, without which we are looking at wrinkles!


-       The CNS (Central Nervous System) has inbuilt double-pumps to increase vitamin C concentration - The brain and spinal cord, rich in highly unsaturated, easily oxidized fatty acids, are thus provided 100x the ascorbate antioxidant protection than in other organs.


-       Involved in the synthesis of norepinephrine from DOPAMINE - in the brain.


-       Pro-oxidant under some circumstances


Vitamin C – “God’s Medicine”


      Glutathione (GSH) (requires selenium) - PRIMARY antioxidant and detoxifier in cell's cytoplasm.


-       A tripeptide (glutamyl-cysteinyl-glycine) - The cysteine provides a highly reactive free sulphydryl group (SH) providing a “Bulls-eye” for oxidation by radicals. The reduced form is regenerated in a redox cycle involving gluthathione reductase and the electron donor NADPH;


-       Produced inside EVERY cell via glutathione peroxidase


-       Helps red blood cells carry oxygen - and keep their shape, enhancing their delivery to vital organs;


-       Prevents formation of methemoglobin - an altered form of hemoglobin unable to carry oxygen, produced by heme iron-oxidation;


-       Aids amino acid transport across cellular membranes - needed for protein synthesis and cellular function.


-       Immune system enhancer - Needed for creation / maintenance of T-Cell lymphocytes - body's frontline defense against infection.


-       Detoxifies toxins - including heavy metals, cigarette smoke, fuel exhaust, etc,


For more details on this major antioxidant and how to increase your body’s intracellular levels:

Glutathione – “King of the Antioxidants”



Major Fat-Soluble Antioxidants


Powerful radical scavengers protect lipid membranes from oxidation

 Generally, these are phenols that donate a hydrogen atom to a peroxyl radical, converting it to a lipid hydroperoxide.


      Vitamin A / Carotenoids (E.g β-carotene (with fat can be converted to Vitamin A), lutein, zeaxanthin and lycopene);


-       Singlet Oxygen quenchers


-       Abundant in - green plants, carrots, tomatoes and other brightly colored vegetables


Vitamin A – “The Grass Vitamin”


      Vitamin E (Tocopherols)


-       Sole purpose to scavenge peroxyl radical in cell membranes


-       Important in fertility


-       Found in - fish oil, nuts, seeds, wheat germ.


Vitamin E


      CoEnzyme Q-10  (a phenol)


-       Present in the mitochondrion inner membrane - Important in the energy producing respiratory chain;


-       Powerful reducing agent


-       Found in beef, herring, chicken, trout


For more detail :



CoQ10  – “Spark and Dampener”


      Vitamin D


-       Formed by sun acting on skin - or in animal products, if animal went outside in the sun, or ate foods containing vitamin D.


For more detail :


Vitamin D – “The Sunshine Vitamin”


      Vitamin K


Vitamin K – “For Klotting and Kalcium"



-       Hormone produced in the pineal gland in darkness (usually at night) – i.e. during a “Good night’s sleep”;


-       Direct scavenger of highly toxic OH (hydroxyl radical), O2·⁻ (superoxide radical),  NO· (Nitric Oxide) , OONO(Peroxynitrite), 1O2* (singlet oxygen), and possibly ROO (Peroxyl radical)


-       May stimulate other enzymati c antioxidants - including SOD (superoxide dismutase), GPx (glutathione peroxidase), glutathione reductase, and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PDH);


-       Reduces oxidative damage in membrane lipids, proteins and nuclear DNA


-       Enters cells with ease


-       MELATONIN levels diminishes with age


For more detail :

MELATONIN – “Darkness Hormone”


      Uric Acid (most important plasma antioxidant in humans)


      Flavonoids -


      Lipoic Acid


      Bilirubin/Histidine -  singlet oxygen quenchers

AOX - ROS Related Links


Health is a Balancing Act Between OXIDANTS and ANTIOXIDANTS 

-   A Powerful bioxidative tool


- Meet Dr. ROS Jeckyll

              and Mr. ROS Hyde

•   Dr. ROS Jeckyll

•   Mr. ROS Hyde

-   Where do Body’s ROS Come From?


 Ÿ•     ROS Chart

-   Antioxidants - Oxidant Damage Control