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Astaxanthin: What is It?
Astaxanthin (pronounced as-tuh-ZAN-thin) is an unusually potent carotenoid. Carotenoids are antioxidant compounds that give foods like carrots and spinach their color. In the case of astaxanthin, the color is a vibrant red, orange or pink.
The natural source of astaxanthin comes from the microalgae Haematococcus pluvialis. Predators feed on the Haematococcus and in turn predators feed on those predators. Astaxanthin accumulates further up the food chain and is demonstrated in the red and orange hues in salmon flesh, cooked lobster, shrimp and many more marine animals.
The carotenoid is also responsible for the vibrant color of flamingos. When flamingos are first hatched their feathers are white or grey. But as the birds begin eating a diet of astaxanthin-rich algae, shrimp, and other marine organisms, the compounds in the carotenoid turn the feathers pink and orange.
One of the highest concentrations of astaxanthin in animals is found in wild salmon. Many scientists believe that the carotenoid helps give the fish the endurance they need to swim upstream against strong currents for miles and miles. The carotenoid is also found in krill, red trout, shrimp, crab and lobster.
Various human clinical trials and animal studies have suggested that astaxanthin plays an important role in endurance and muscle recovery.
In one Swedish human study participants were separated into two groups. One group was given 4 mg of astaxanthin daily while a placebo group received no astaxanthin. After six months researchers found that the strength and endurance improved significantly in the group given the carotenoid compared to the placebo group.
In an in vitro study, astaxanthin was found to have greater antioxidant power at quenching oxidation compared to the antioxidants alpha lipoic acid, green tea catechins, coenzyme Q10 and vitamin C.
Now research has begun to reveal the carotenoid’s benefits for the skin. One study conducted in Japan analyzed the benefits of astaxanthin on 40 year old women. After four weeks of taking the carotenoid, participants saw improvements in spots and freckles, fine wrinkles, moisture levels, skin tone, elasticity, and smoothness. The placebo group showed no improvement.
Both natural and synthetic astaxanthin are available in supplements. However, most of the research has been conducted with the natural form. That’s why our Advanced Cell Rescue only uses the pure, natural form of the carotenoid.
In the formula we’ve combined natural astaxanthin with other powerful antioxidants like pyrroloquinoline quinone (PQQ) and N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC) to help you fight the signs of aging and keep your heart, brain and muscles functioning optimally.