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What are the benefits of astaxanthin (antioxidant)?

You're probably wondering what benefits astaxanthin can bring to human health? How can it positively influence the appearance of skin, hair and nails? We answer these questions in detail, highlighting astaxanthin's virtues as an antioxidant.
SOMMAIRE :

What is astaxanthin?

Definition

Astaxanthin is a red pigment belonging to the carotenoid family, a natural substance found in certain plants and animals. This substance is produced by microalgae and gives a characteristic pink-red color to salmon, shrimp, crayfish and flamingos that feed on its algae. Carotenoids, identifiable by their bright colors, are present in a wide variety of fruits, vegetables and flowers, such as carrots, tomatoes and apricots. They are precursors of vitamin A, essential for vision, growth and the proper functioning of the immune system. Astaxanthin is a unique compound, distinguished by its chemical structure, which gives it distinct properties.

Astaxanthin belongs to the keto-carotenoid group, with ketone and xanthophyll functional groups, and hydroxyl functional groups, enabling it to bind both water and lipids. This amphiphilicity enables it to dissolve in cell membranes and exert its antioxidant action, and to cross the blood-brain and blood-retinal barriers, attracting interest for its beneficial effects on the brain and eyes.

Properties: antioxidant

In addition to its contribution to color, astaxanthin is a powerful antioxidant that plays a crucial role in protecting cells against oxidative stress and inflammation, thus preserving our health. It is considered one of nature’s most powerful antioxidants. It has the power to neutralize the free radicals generated by pollution, smoking, exposure to sunlight or alcohol, and stress, all of which contribute to premature aging.

Origin: Natural source of astaxanthin (algae, shellfish)

Astaxanthin occurs naturally in certain plants and animals. It is synthesized by microalgae such as Haematococcus pluvialis, which are then consumed by various fish, crustaceans and birds, giving them their characteristic pink-red color.

Here are a few food sources rich in astaxanthin:

Salmon : the richest source, with around 4.5 mg of astaxanthin per 100 g serving. Wild salmon contains more astaxanthin than its farmed counterpart, thanks to its diet rich in algae and shellfish.

Trout : approximately 3.5 mg per 100 g serving. Rainbow trout leads the way in terms of content, followed by sea and brown trout.

Shrimp : with around 1.2 mg per 100 g serving, red shrimp stands out as the richest in astaxanthin, closely followed by pink and grey shrimp.

Lobster : contains 0.9 mg per serving, with European lobster being the richest, followed by American and Canadian lobsters.

Krill : this small cold-water crustacean contains around 0.6 mg per 100 g.

Haematococcus pluvialis algae: this algae has the highest concentration, at 40 mg per gram of dry matter. Grown under controlled conditions, it is used in the manufacture of dietary supplements.

To reap its benefits, you can incorporate these foods into your diet.

Comparison: Comparison with other antioxidants (vitamin C, vitamin E)

Astaxanthin is exceptionally more effective than many well-known antioxidants, such as vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene, lutein or lycopene. It can also regenerate other antioxidants, promoting enhanced protection against oxidative damage.

What are the benefits of astaxanthin for the skin?

skin benefits

It is a precious ally for the skin, offering optimum protection against external aggressors such as UV rays, pollution, tobacco and stress. The latter are free radicals, threatening the integrity of our skin.

In addition to its antioxidant effect, it also has significant anti-inflammatory properties, capable of reducing skin redness, irritation and inflammation. It acts by reducing the production of cytokines, thus contributing to the well-being of sensitive or allergy-prone skin. It is also effective in the prevention and treatment of skin disorders such as psoriasis, eczema and acne. By improving skin hydration, elasticity and texture, astaxanthin encourages the synthesis of collagen, essential for skin structure and suppleness.

The result? Softer, smoother, more radiant skin.

It’s a natural ingredient with numerous benefits for the skin, offering protection, repair, nutrition and a rejuvenating effect.

What are the benefits for hair?

Astaxanthin offers numerous benefits for hair, improving growth, strength and shine.

hair benefits

Stimulates hair growth

It improves blood circulation in the scalp, boosting the supply of nutrients and oxygen to hair follicles. It also increases expression of the growth factor IGF-1, boosting cell proliferation in the hair bulb.

Prevents and slows hair loss.

It has a powerful effect on hair loss, including that caused by androgenetic alopecia. This is due to its inhibitory action on the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase, which converts testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a hormone that shortens hair life.

Strengthens hair resistance.

Free radicals damage capillary proteins such as keratin, collagen and elastin, making hair fragile, brittle and dull. Thanks to its antioxidant power, it preserves protein integrity, improving hair resilience.

Enhances hair shine

By increasing moisture levels, it makes hair softer and more supple, while improving light reflection on the hair surface, giving it incomparable shine and luminosity. Even if hair is dry or damaged, it will restore its vigor.

Delays the appearance of gray hair

Its protective power protects melanocytes – the cells responsible for producing melanin, the pigment that gives hair its color – against the oxidative stress responsible for their degeneration and reduced melanin production. Astaxanthin thus preserves hair’s natural color and can help delay or slow down the appearance of hair.

What are the health benefits of astaxanthin?

Far beyond its aesthetic benefits for skin and hair, astaxanthin also has surprisingly positive effects on our general well-being. With its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, astaxanthin can play a key role in the prevention and amelioration of various chronic diseases such as cardiovascular problems, diabetes, arthritis and asthma.

For the heart and blood vessels, it is an invaluable ally in reducing cholesterol and triglyceride levels. This reduces the risk of atherosclerosis, thrombosis and heart attacks.

It also prevents the oxidation of LDL-cholesterol, known to cause plaque formation in the arteries.

For those suffering from joint pain, astaxanthin also proves beneficial by inhibiting the production of certain molecules causing inflammation and pain, while slowing the degradation of cartilage.

It also boosts the immune system by stimulating the activity of defense cells such as T lymphocytes and macrophages, while regulating excessive immune responses that can trigger allergies or autoimmune diseases. This makes it an effective support against infections, allergies and inflammatory diseases.

Where to find astaxanthin?

In addition to the foods mentioned above, you can opt for a supplement containing astaxanthin. We recommend organic, vegan supplements made in France.

Skin & hait essential

Miyé SKIN & HAIR ESSENTIAL contains it. What’s more, it’s made exclusively in France and is vegan.

Conclusion

Astaxanthin plays a key role in protecting cells against oxidative stress and inflammation. Acting as an effective anti-aging agent, astaxanthin helps prevent skin, hair and cell aging.

For those interested in its antioxidant benefits, we recommend the option of organic, vegan food supplements made in France. These products respect the environment and focus on quality.

Sources

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