Dietary intake of natural antioxidants: vitamins and polyphenols

Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2013;53(7):706-21. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2011.555018.


Oxidative stress is a condition in which oxidant metabolites exert their toxic effect because of an increased production or an altered cellular mechanism of protection; oxidative stress is rapidly gaining recognition as a key phenomenon in chronic diseases. Antioxidants terminate these chain reactions by removing free radical intermediates, and inhibit other oxidation reactions by being oxidized themselves. Endogenous defence mechanisms are inadequate for the complete prevention of oxidative damage, and different sources of dietary antioxidants may be especially important. This article calls attention to the dietary antioxidants, such as vitamins A, C, and E and polyphenols. Compelling evidence has led to the conclusion that diet is a key environmental factor and a potential tool for the control of chronic diseases. More specifically, fruits and vegetables have been shown to exert a protective effect. The high content of minerals and natural antioxidant as vitamins A, C, and E and polyphenols in fruits and vegetables may be a main factor responsible for these effects.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / administration & dosage*
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Diet
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Fruit
  • Humans
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects
  • Polyphenols / administration & dosage*
  • Polyphenols / pharmacokinetics
  • Trace Elements / administration & dosage
  • Vegetables
  • Vitamins / administration & dosage*
  • Vitamins / pharmacokinetics


  • Antioxidants
  • Biomarkers
  • Polyphenols
  • Trace Elements
  • Vitamins