Polyphenols and Hormesis
I am going to add a few comments on the benefits of phytochemical "antioxidants", a.k.a. polyphenols, to clarify what I think is a misuse of the term "hormesis", which I thought meant the dilution of a toxin until it reached a magic lower concentration which was beneficial. The trade offs of phytochemicals are nicely discussed by the Whole Health Source blogger, Dr. Stephan Guyenet. I just don't think that the benefit of toxic chemicals stimulating the body's own antioxidant arsenal is an example of hormesis. The point is that phytochemicals always act as toxins and stimulate toxin defenses. Phytochemicals don't act as anti-oxidants in the body, even though they stimulate antioxidant defenses at all concentrations. They provide a dubious benefit of unnecessarily heightening defenses with concomitant energy expenditure at low amounts and net damage at higher amounts.