The ORAC Value & Why It's Important


Free radicals, and the damage they can do at the cellular level, have received a lot of attention in the last few years. The oxidative stress caused by free radicals which are produced during normal metabolism and cell function, as well as pollutants in our air, water and food has been implicated in everything from aging and wrinkling of skin to DNA damage, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

USDA researchers at Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts, have developed a laboratory test to measure the oxygen radical absorption capacity of different foods and natural substances. Known as the ORAC scale, it is one of the most sensitive and reliable methods for measuring antioxidant capacity, which means the pace at which nutrients can 'eat up' free radicals (the bad stuff, cellular waste, etc.). The higher the number on the scale, the more antioxidant a food is, and the faster it will clean up the free radicals in your body.

When you refer to The ORAC Value Chart, it's important to refer to the total-ORAC listed. Each food is listed in a measurement of 100 grams (about 3.5 ounces)