A Look Inside Astaxanthin
SHOP.COM | marketamerica.com | Powerline Issue Aug/Sept 2012
by James Moffat
This new super-powered antioxidant is making waves in the marketplace.
There are very few ingredients that have received as much attention as astaxanthin. From its extensive health benefit to mainstream media exposure to a worldwide supply shortage leaving manufacturers and customers clamoring for this revolutionary ingredient, astaxanthin has become the latest “go-to” ingredient. But just what makes astaxanthin such a hot commodity?
Here’s the scoop on one of the most important supplements you might never have heard of. Heart-Smart Benefits There is evidence that astaxanthin can help improve cholesterol profiles by decreasing low density lipoprotein (LDL, also known as “bad” cholesterol) and triglycerides, and by increasing high density lipoprotein (HDL, or “good” cholesterol), as well as lowering blood pressure. In addition, these studies have shown that the higher the amount of astaxanthin in the system, the greater the potential cardiovascular benefits. Studies have also found astaxanthin reduces the number of inflammatory cells that promote arterial plaque and yields significant improvements in blood flow. Seeing the Difference Astaxanthin has proven itself a great asset for eye health, especially general eye fatigue and eye strain associated with the use of visual electronic devices such as smart phones, tablet computers and televisions. This is true thanks to astaxanthin’s antioxidant and carotenoid characteristics. The antioxidant capabilities of astaxanthin work to reduce inflammation in eye muscles and improve blood flow to the eyes — especially in the capillary vessels that supply blood to the retina. At the same time, its high-powered antioxidant activity protects against free radical damage and oxidative stress. Together, reduced inflammation and improved blood flow can effectively alleviate symptoms of eyestrain and help eyes to perform at their best. Anti-Aging’s Answer?
Today, we face increasing exposure to chemical pollution, ultraviolet radiation and ozone levels, all of which can damage the skin’s dermal layer. These negative effects are compounded with increasingly poor diets and lifestyle habits not conducive to maintaining the skin’s natural repair process and antioxidant network. The high-potency antioxidant astaxanthin — confirmed to display free radical scavenging abilities some 500 times that of vitamin E — is rapidly gaining recognition as the next big thing in anti-aging. Long-term free radical damage is considered a primary catalyst of the aging process itself. While it may not be possible to literally “turn back the clock,” it is a legitimate claim — verified in several studies — that astaxanthin can greatly contribute to the grace with which we age. An Athlete’s Dream? All physical activity generates free radicals, which have been shown to have damaging effects on muscle performance and recovery. Research shows that astaxanthin can improve muscle metabolism via its antioxidant effect, resulting in the improvement of muscle function during exercise. Not only have studies found that astaxanthin protects the skeletal muscle from increased damage of oxidative stress and free radicals generated by physical activity, but it provides the body with fuel to recover.
Therefore, astaxanthin is proven useful for physically active people as well as athletes.