Astaxanthin for Skin Health

The skin plays many roles. It is a sensory organ that feels touch, pain, and temperature changes. It is a barrier that prevents water loss from the body, prevents harmful micro-organisms and materials from entering the body, and protects the body from harmful ultra-violet radiation from the sun. It cushions the body against bumps and shocks, and produces much-needed vitamin D. Since it is exposed to the environment, it suffers a lot from loss of moisture, irritation, allergic reactions, extreme heat, cold weather, and disease. It is therefore very important to keep it healthy. Expensive creams might help but the real secret to healthy skin may lie in astaxanthin, a compound that is an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.

Free radicals cause aging

Free radicals are unstable molecules that seek stability by stealing electrons from body cells, damaging those cells. It is normal for the body to produce free radicals during normal processes. But if it produces too many through excessive sun exposure, pollution, and smoking, the damage which is called oxidative stress accumulates fast. This damage, which is like rusting of the body, leads to chronic diseases and visible signs of aging by breaking down collagen and elastin in the skin and muscles.

The body produces built-in free-radical-fighting agents called antioxidants that donate electrons to unstable free radicals, and thus neutralize them. If your body produces too many free radicals, it may not produce enough antioxidants. So, you need antioxidants from diet and supplements.

Astaxanthin to the rescue

One of the best ways to protect the skin is top supplement with astaxanthin. Astaxanthin is a carotenoid, a reddish pigment that occurs naturally in certain algae, crab, trout, lobster, Pacific salmon, shrimp, fish eggs, and other seafoods.

King of carotenoids

Astaxanthin has been called “king of carotenoids” because it displayed the highest antioxidant activity against free radicals in a study that compared it to other carotenoids. It is:

  • Five times as powerful as beta-carotene found in carrots.
  • 550 times more effective as an antioxidant than vitamin E.
  • 550 times richer as a source of antioxidants than green tea.
  • 6,000 times more potent than vitamin C.

Best of all, astaxanthin doesn’t convert into a pro-oxidant at high concentrations like other antioxidants. So, it can never cause destructive oxidation. That makes it a perfect supplement for the skin when taken orally or applied topically.

King of carotenoids

Eating foods rich in astaxanthin or taking supplements protects the skin from ultraviolet radiation damage. Scientists have found that 90% of visible skin damage is caused by sun exposure which increases production of many free radicals. Luckily, Astaxanthin acts as an internal sunscreen by accumulating in the dermis and epidermis layers of the skin and blocking UV penetration. That way, it reduces sun damage and the resulting inflammatory response. One study confirmed that it delays UV exposure damage, meaning less sunburn now and fewer wrinkles later. In another 16-week clinical study, participants who took astaxanthin supplements experienced improved skin elasticity, while the control group experienced worsening of wrinkles.

Improves skin health

Astaxanthin can be applied to the skin to promote its health and youthful appearance. In a 2012 study involving men and women, combining oral doses with topical application of astaxanthin helped to reduce age spots, smooth wrinkles, and maintain skin moisture. It also inhibits the onset of skin cancer while improving appearance.

Supports healing of sunburn

If you already suffered from sunburn, do not despair because astaxanthin can support the healing process. In one 12-week study, supplementing with this compound significantly improved skin hydration, smoothness, and elasticity. In two other studies, topical application and supplementation improved skin texture, age spot size, and wrinkles. In a recent double-blind clinical study, participants experienced overall improved elasticity, improved tone, and improved moisture levels especially around the eyes. In another recent double-blind clinical study, scientists confirmed that astaxanthin even helps the skin’s water retention capacity and prevents skin barrier damage.

Anti-inflammation

Astaxanthin is also anti-inflammatory, which is great for preventing and healing skin conditions. In animal studies, scientists found that it reduced UV-induced inflammation and cell death, and increased the amount of growth factors and collagen.

Health risks

Astaxanthin comes with a few health risks. It naturally lowers blood pressure so be careful if you are taking blood pressure medication. People with seafood allergies should avoid astaxanthin from seafood and get the one from algae.

Bottomline

Aging is natural. However, you can delay it by maintaining skin health and preventing chronic diseases by taking and topically applying astaxanthin.

The skin plays many roles. It is a sensory organ that feels touch, pain, and temperature changes. It is a barrier that prevents water loss from the body, prevents harmful micro-organisms and materials from entering the body, and protects the body from harmful ultra-violet radiation from the sun. It cushions the body against bumps and shocks, and produces much-needed vitamin D. Since it is exposed to the environment, it suffers a lot from loss of moisture, irritation, allergic reactions, extreme heat, cold weather, and disease. It is therefore very important to keep it healthy. Expensive creams might help but the real secret to healthy skin may lie in astaxanthin, a compound that is an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.

Free radicals cause aging

Free radicals are unstable molecules that seek stability by stealing electrons from body cells, damaging those cells. It is normal for the body to produce free radicals during normal processes. But if it produces too many through excessive sun exposure, pollution, and smoking, the damage which is called oxidative stress accumulates fast. This damage, which is like rusting of the body, leads to chronic diseases and visible signs of aging by breaking down collagen and elastin in the skin and muscles.

The body produces built-in free-radical-fighting agents called antioxidants that donate electrons to unstable free radicals, and thus neutralize them. If your body produces too many free radicals, it may not produce enough antioxidants. So, you need antioxidants from diet and supplements.

Astaxanthin to the rescue

One of the best ways to protect the skin is top supplement with astaxanthin. Astaxanthin is a carotenoid, a reddish pigment that occurs naturally in certain algae, crab, trout, lobster, Pacific salmon, shrimp, fish eggs, and other seafoods.

King of carotenoids

Astaxanthin has been called “king of carotenoids” because it displayed the highest antioxidant activity against free radicals in a study that compared it to other carotenoids. It is:

  • Five times as powerful as beta-carotene found in carrots.
  • 550 times more effective as an antioxidant than vitamin E.
  • 550 times richer as a source of antioxidants than green tea.
  • 6,000 times more potent than vitamin C.

Best of all, astaxanthin doesn’t convert into a pro-oxidant at high concentrations like other antioxidants. So, it can never cause destructive oxidation. That makes it a perfect supplement for the skin when taken orally or applied topically.

Protects skin from UV damage

Eating foods rich in astaxanthin or taking supplements protects the skin from ultraviolet radiation damage. Scientists have found that 90% of visible skin damage is caused by sun exposure which increases production of many free radicals. Luckily, Astaxanthin acts as an internal sunscreen by accumulating in the dermis and epidermis layers of the skin and blocking UV penetration. That way, it reduces sun damage and the resulting inflammatory response. One study confirmed that it delays UV exposure damage, meaning less sunburn now and fewer wrinkles later. In another 16-week clinical study, participants who took astaxanthin supplements experienced improved skin elasticity, while the control group experienced worsening of wrinkles.

Improves skin health

Astaxanthin can be applied to the skin to promote its health and youthful appearance. In a 2012 study involving men and women, combining oral doses with topical application of astaxanthin helped to reduce age spots, smooth wrinkles, and maintain skin moisture. It also inhibits the onset of skin cancer while improving appearance.

Supports healing of sunburn

If you already suffered from sunburn, do not despair because astaxanthin can support the healing process. In one 12-week study, supplementing with this compound significantly improved skin hydration, smoothness, and elasticity. In two other studies, topical application and supplementation improved skin texture, age spot size, and wrinkles. In a recent double-blind clinical study, participants experienced overall improved elasticity, improved tone, and improved moisture levels especially around the eyes. In another recent double-blind clinical study, scientists confirmed that astaxanthin even helps the skin’s water retention capacity and prevents skin barrier damage.

Anti-inflammation

Astaxanthin is also anti-inflammatory, which is great for preventing and healing skin conditions. In animal studies, scientists found that it reduced UV-induced inflammation and cell death, and increased the amount of growth factors and collagen.

Health risks

Astaxanthin comes with a few health risks. It naturally lowers blood pressure so be careful if you are taking blood pressure medication. People with seafood allergies should avoid astaxanthin from seafood and get the one from algae.

Bottomline

Aging is natural. However, you can delay it by maintaining skin health and preventing chronic diseases by taking and topically applying astaxanthin.