This spring, I lived in California, and I had the opportunity to attend a very interesting two-month nutrition course at Stanford University. The program was called Food Facts and Fads (“Food: Facts and Myths”) and, as the name implies, was supposed to teach students to understand a huge stream of scientific and pseudo-scientific information about nutrition.
I want to tell you about some of the topics that we discussed.
This article deals with the problem of oxidation, which our teacher, Dr. Clyde Wilson, raised literally in every lesson. What is oxidation? From a chemical point of view, this is a process during which a donor molecule gives an electron to an oxidizing molecule. That is, the donor loses an electron, thereby oxidizing. In principle, in the human body, this process should be balanced by a system to protect cells from damage, but often this system is not able to withstand a huge number of aggressive forms of oxygen, such as free radicals that oxidize (i.e. damage) important components of our cells. As a result, the body experiences oxidative stress, and this is one of the causes of many diseases. Antioxidants are a powerful force that can neutralize aggressive free radicals. More about them and tells my teacher. Below is the text of his article. Continue reading