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Size: 60 softgels
- Maintains cell membrane integrity
- Supports eye function and health
- Improves skin condition
- Helps manage blood sugars
Effective protection for the cells
Astaxanthin is a particularly strong antioxidant. Because of its structure, it provides antioxidant protection, in a way that is unique to astaxanthin, to cell membranes, which is essential to prevent cellular damage. It has been shown that the antioxidant and biological activity of astaxanthin was greater than those of other potent antioxidants such as Vitamin E and beta-carotene.
Benefits for the Eyes, the Skin, and Other Organs
Astaxanthin’s antioxidant effects are beneficial for eye, gastrointestinal and cardiovascular health. Since it can cross the blood-brain barrier, it relieves oxidative stress in the eyes, brain and CNS. It has been found to improve visual function and alleviate eye fatigue. It has also been found to lower blood glucose levels. Astaxanthin is important for healthy skin, as it helps to reduce dryness and improves elasticity. In the gastrointestinal system, it has been found to improve digestion and reduce gastric pain and heartburn. Athletes can benefit from astaxanthin’s ability to improve endurance.
Astaxanthin is an antioxidant which provides an impressive array of protective effects that promote health from the eyes to stomach. Astaxanthin Ultra contains an effective dose in order to deliver the benefits associated with this potent nutrient. Astaxanthin Ultra from AOR is now encapsulated in a completely vegetarian softgel, making it a 100% vegetarian product.
Serving Size: 1 Softgel Haematococcus pluvialis extract 40 mg (4 mg Astaxanthin)
Key Features: 100% vegetarian, Protects cell membranes
Suggested Use: Take 1 to 2 softgels daily with food, or as directed by a qualified health practitioner.
Cautions: Consult a health care practitioner for use beyond 3 months or prior to use if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Firstly, astaxanthin is a member of the xanthophyll subcategory of carotenoids – organic pigments that occur mainly in plants. Astaxanthin is found in abundance in marine environments, particularly among algae, and the pink and red colour of salmon, shrimp and lobster is attributable to the astaxanthin-rich diets of these animals. Astaxanthin has a unique molecular structure: its polar end groups have the distinct ability to attach themselves to both sides of the lipid bilayer that contains the cell membrane. From this entrenched position, astaxanthin inhibits the lipid peroxidation of the cell membrane (which is the ‘gatekeeper of the cell’ -controlling what comes in and out), by extension protecting the mitochondria and the rest of the cell from potentially damaging peroxidation. Astaxanthin can also quench free radicals by adding them to its structure rather than sacrificing an atom or electron, meaning that unlike most antioxidants, astaxanthin is far less likely to become a mild free radical in its own right after quenching one. This also allows astaxanthin to be more biologically active, enabling it to trap and quench more free radicals – and of a greater variety – than most other antioxidants.
Astaxanthin’s fat-solubility and low molecular weight (less than 600 daltons) allows it to effectively cross the blood-brain barrier to alleviate oxidative stress in the eyes, brain and central nervous system. Particular focus has been paid to astaxanthin’s effect on ocular health, with several Japanese studies examining its ability to alleviate the symptoms of asthenopia (eye fatigue). This increasingly common condition is often caused by overexposure to visual display terminals (VDT’s), and the aforementioned human studies revealed that astaxanthin (at 5mg per day for one month) can alleviate asthenopia symptoms by 54%. Scientists believe the mechanism of action for these benefits is based on the increased ciliary body accommodation, increased retinal blood flow, and anti-inflammatory properties associated with astaxanthin supplementation.
Astaxanthin has also been studied for its efficacy in addressing the conditions imposed by type II diabetes. Two studies in lab mice found that astaxanthin reduced blood glucose levels by nearly 40%, preserved pancreatic beta-cells from oxidative damage, increased insulin sensitivity and prevented diabetic nephropathy.
Astaxanthin has also been studied for its effect on dyspepsia (digestive problems in the upper abdominal region). Several well-designed studies among patients with non-ulcerous dyspepsia resulted in astaxanthin reducing gastric pain, heartburn and total clinical symptoms by half to three quarters, in just three weeks!
Astaxanthin’s anti-oxidant effects are also beneficial in skin treatments. Studies have shown that oral supplementation with astaxanthin reduces skin dryness and fine lines while improving moisture content and elasticity.
Finally, astaxanthin has been examined for its sports-nutrition applications, particularly with respect to endurance athletes. Several studies have shown that it can increase the amount of exercise performed and can even reduce lactic acid build-up with aerobic exercise.
Possibly More Powerful Than the Rest
In conclusion, astaxanthin exerts all of the aforementioned benefits through the fundamental premise of protecting the cell membrane from lipid peroxidation, and in this role it is 550 times more effective than Vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol). It is also 40 times more potent than beta-carotene in quenching singlet oxygen free radicals, and has been shown to have synergistic effects with lycopene, lipoic acid, resveratrol, ascorbic acid, ginseng, garlic, gingko biloba and tocotrienols, among others. Astaxanthin is clearly an antioxidant whose time has come.