Reactive Oxygen Species

ROSes are nasty, just like Rodents of Unusual Size (ROUSes).  When you eat carbohydrates, that puts more oxygen into you body.  I was puzzled about this, until an exercise physiologist in our trail run group explained to me that sugar molecules have more oxygen atoms than do fat molecules.  Oxygen is a very reactive molecule.  Breathing it in and transporting it with red blood cells is OK.  Having it in the breakdown products of metabolism isn’t, apparently.  The ROSes cause inflammation and tissue damage.  Many degenerative disorders are linked to ROSes, including the vision condition, macular degeneration, that I’m at risk for in later life.

Here’s what can happen if you meet the ROUSes, which are also nasty–

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