Antioxidants protect the body from damage caused by harmful molecules called oxygen free radicals. Most antioxidants are vitamins (such as beta-carotene and vitamins E and C) that are naturally found in many fruits and vegetables or are available as supplements.
Oxygen free radicals are normal by-products of cell metabolism. But at high levels they can cause damage to cells. Antioxidants may protect the body from cell damage.
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