The bad guys are Free Radicals – highly reactive chemicals that damage cells and DNA by pilfering electrons in a relentless quest to enhance their own stability. The good guys are Antioxidants – a group of compounds that help prevent the damage caused by Free Radicals. A war is being waged inside your body between these two and only good nutrition and a healthy lifestyle can ensure that the good guys win. Even if you do lead a healthy lifestyle, Free Radicals are present in your body in abundant numbers and their numbers can multiply quickly due to pollution, pesticides, alcohol, tobacco, ultraviolet light, stress and (although you probably wouldn’t guess) – exercise.
Exercise releases Free Radicals which can lower your immune system and slow your progress in the gym. The most common Free Radicals in the body are by-products of exercise and they bind to cells (like those in muscle tissue), causing damage to membranes. Unless you can find a way to stop breathing (which I don’t advise), a certain amount of “Oxidative Stress” is inevitable. Oxidative Stress is caused because working out can increase the amount of Oxygen your body processes by as much as ten times more than when it is in a resting state. Oxygen can also have a detrimental effect on the body in that it actually breaks down your body’s tissue on a cellular level. Over time, Free Radical accumulation can do more harm than simply slowing your progress in the gym. They can also contribute to major health problems; i.e. cancer, diabetes, atherosclerosis and Alzheimer’s, to name a few. Recovery Shakes do more than just replace Glycogen levels and stop the cannibalization of your muscles- they are loaded with Antioxidants that can help you win the battle against Free Radicals. Try a shake rich in Raspberries, Strawberries, Blueberries or Blackberries.