What Exactly Are Antioxidants?

'Antioxidant' is becoming one of the biggest buzzwords companies like to use to show you that their product is healthy, but how many people know exactly what antioxidants are and what they do?

To understand the importance of the role of antioxidants, first, we need to discuss 'free radicals.' Free radicals are a product of the oxidation of your body. Oxygen splits into atoms with unpaired electrons, and as you remember from high school chemistry, electrons basically prefer to hang out with another electron. These electron lacking molecules are called free radicals, and they are highly associated with a human disease like cancer. So an anti-oxidant is an agent that goes against the naturally occurring oxidation of the body, fair enough right you knew that much from the name. Antioxidants prevent oxidation as they are actually carrying an extra electron, and can give that electron to the free radical molecule (that would otherwise have attacked one of your body's healthy cells to get it) thereby neutralizing the free radical cell and reducing the overall oxidative stress on the body.

For the purposes of Cydekick, antioxidants are extremely important, as alcohol can cause excess oxidative stress on the body. According to a study by Defeng Wu P.h.D. and Arthur I Cederbaum P.h.D.;

"Alcohol promotes the generation of ROS [reactive oxygen species] and/or interferes with the body’s normal defense mechanisms against these compounds through numerous processes, particularly in the liver"

This should come as no surprise as alcohol is toxic. Although it has been socially normalized, it's still bad for you. In Cydekick, we have included a wide variety of antioxidants carefully combined to help mitigate alcohol-induced oxidative stress as much as possible. And these aren't just any old antioxidants, 'cuz not all antioxidants are created equally.

For the scope of this article, we will talk about two of the most important antioxidants in our formulation. First, Cydekick contains N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC). NAC is a derivative of the amino acid L-cysteine. It provides extremely powerful antioxidant support in the body as it acts as a precursor for glutathione production in the liver and without it, the body would be unable to produce any sort of natural glutathione antioxidant, which is the most powerful antioxidant of all. Cydekick does not contain glutathione directly, as scientists have mixed results on whether or not orally administered glutathione has a positive effect on blood glutathione concentration, whereas it is accepted that precursors, like NAC, contribute to glutathione production. Second is Prickly Pear Cactus Extract. Prickly Pear has long been hailed as one of the most effective hangover remedies due to its powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, as well as its perceived ability to lower levels of C-reactive protein after drinking, which is produced by the liver and is linked to inflammation.