Punicalin is one of the most active polyphenol antioxidants found in pomegranates. Antioxidants are compounds that prevent oxidation. Oxidation is a basic biological process that can be compared to combustion (rapid oxidation) or rust (slow oxidation). The molecules that cause the oxidation are called “free radicals,” which are highly unstable molecules that can damage cells.
Your body produces free radicals when it breaks down food for use or storage — and when it is exposed to tobacco smoke, radiation, or environmental contaminants. Antioxidants, which resist the cellular damage, are abundant in many fruits and vegetables. Though scientific evidence is still being amassed, antioxidants have been associated with disease resistance and the improvement of brain function.
In this model, carbon atoms are dark gray, hydrogen atoms are white, and oxygen atoms are red.
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