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[Human Benefits of Astaxanthin | Astaxanthin Provides Antioxidant Protection for Your Cells
[Astaxanthin is a Powerful Carotenoid | Unique Mechanisms of Astaxanthin Action]
[Astaxanthin Effectiveness and Synergy | Unique Molecular Structure of Astaxanthin]
[Marine Algae: A Natural and Renewable Source of Astaxanthin | Astaxanthin Safety]

Human Benefits of Astaxanathin
Astaxanthin is the platform for a wide range of products and can address each of the following human indications:

  • Astaxanthin increases strength and endurance (2 - 8 times greater increase over baseline verses placebo in human study).*
  • Astaxanthin alleviates symptoms in patients with H. pylori (pre-ulcer indigestion).*
  • Astaxanthin protects cells and mitochondrial membranes from oxidative damage, thus protecting the cell from oxidative damage.**
  • Astaxanthin boosts immune system by increasing the number of antibody-producing cells.**
  • Astaxanthin prevents the initiation of cancer cells in the tongue, oral cavity, large bowel, bladder, uterus, and breast.**
  • Astaxanthin inhibits lipid peroxidation that causes plaque formation, thus reducing risk of cardiovascular disease.**
  • Astaxanthin alleviates stress and may assist in neurodegenerative  conditions such as AMD, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, ALS.**
  • Astaxanthin protects the eyes and skin from UV A and B damage by quenching singlet and triplet oxygen.**
  • Astaxanthin reduces the number of new and abnormal cells in the liver.**

* Confirmed in human clinical study.
** Confirmed in preclinical studies.  

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Astaxanthin Provides Antioxidant Protection for Your Cells

Astaxanthin is the carotenoid responsible for the pink pigmentation in the flesh of salmon, lobster, krill and other aquatic animals and plants.  Carotenoids, like astaxanthin, are the red, orange and yellow plant pigments that give fruits and vegetables their vivid colors.  Many carotenoids, such as astaxanthin, act as antioxidants to protect our cells from free radicals. 

In animals and humans, astaxanthin works in conjunction with other antioxidants to protect the membranes of cells as well as the mitochondria, the tiny energy factories inside cells.  Astaxanthin is derived from a vegetarian source - marine algae cultivated in the warm waters of Hawaii's Kona Coast.

Astaxanthin is a Powerful Carotenoid

Astaxanthin is a powerful antioxidant carotenoid that is closely related to the better-known beta carotene.  Astaxanthin is unique in the range of its antioxidant activity.  Astaxanthin provides protection from more types of free radicals (aldoxyl, hydroxyl, peroxyl, singles and triplex oxygen) than many other antioxidants.  Recent studies have indictated that astaxanthin is more powerful than its carotenoid cousin, beta carotene, at neutralizing singlet oxygen. 

Free radicals are atoms or compounds containing one or more unpaired electrons; they will capture electrons from the first place they can to complete the pair.  When taken from proteins, electron loss can cause protein cross-linking (a key action of stiffening tissues), disable hormones and enzymes, and damage cell structures.  Free radicals can even take electrons from DNA, which may cause genetic alterations. 

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Unique Mechanisms of Astaxanthin Action

  • Astaxanthin spans the cell membrane bilayer (fat/water) because of its polar end groups attached near the fat/water surface where free radical attack first occurs.
  • Astaxanthin crosses the blood brain barrier... 1 of only 4 antioxidants known to do that.
  • Astaxanthin inhibits the destruction of the fatty acids and proteins in the cell membrane and the mitochondrial membranes in the cells caused by peroxidation of fats.
  • Astaxanthin stabilizes free radicals by adding them to its structure (long double-bonded chain) rather than donating an atom or electron.
  • Astaxanthin is more resistant to chain reactions that can occur when fatty acids are oxidized, thus allowing it to scavenge or quench longer than an antioxidant who cannot stop this chain reaction.
  • Astaxanthin neutralizes singlet and triplet oxygen by de-charging them.
  • Astaxanthin traps more types of radicals (alkoxyl, hydroxyl, peroxyl and singlet and triplet oxygen).
  • Because it binds to a lipid, (fat) protein, Astaxanthin travels more readily in the body and is more available for use.
  • Spanning the bilayer with its polar end groups Astaxanthin may increase cell membrane rigidity and mechanical strength.
  • Astaxanthin inhibits reactive oxygen species that causes inflammation to the cells, thus anti-inflammatory capabilities.
  • Astaxanthin transports alkoxyl radicals along its long chain (like a bridge) to fat/water interface, where water soluble antioxidants such as Vitamin C can scavenge them.

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Astaxanthin Effectiveness and Synergy

  • Astaxanthin is at least 10 times more effective as an antioxidant than beta-carotene.
  • Astaxanthin is 100 to 500 times more effective in inhibiting lipid peroxidation as an antioxidant than Vitamin E.
  • Astaxanthin has greater anti-inflammatory capability than Vitamin E.
  • Astaxanthin has at least 4 times the antioxidant capacity of lutein.
  • Astaxanthin provides superior protection against UVA light-induced oxidative stress.
  • Astaxanthin is more stable in scavenging and quenching than beta-carotene, canthaxanthin, and zeaxanthin. 
  • Astaxanthin is the most potent antioxidant in enhancing T1 helper cells and suppressing interferon-gamma.
  • Astaxanthin is more effective than lycopene, lutein and beta-carotene in immune protection against initiation and promotion of tumors.
  • Astaxanthin enhances the actions of Vitamins C, and E in the body.
  • Astaxanthin enhances the release of retinol (Vitamin A) from the liver when needed. 

Unique Molecular Structure of Astaxanthin

In vitro (laboratory) and animal studies suggest that astaxanthin may have a wide range of antioxidative benefits for humans.  Astaxanthin's powerful antioxidant properties are related to its unique molecular structure.  Astaxanthin has polar end groups that allow it to span across the cell membrane's bilayer.  This means astaxanthin is available to work near the fat/water interface where free radical attack first occurs.  Astaxanthin stabilizes free radicals by adding them to its structure, effectively quenching their potential to do damage. 

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Marine Algae: A Natural and Renewable Source of Astaxanthin

Haematococcus pluvialis microalgae are extremely rich in astaxanthin, accumulating much higher levels of astaxanthin than salmon.  In fact, these microalgae are now used as a source of feed for farm-cultivated salmon and other fish, providing the astaxanthin they require but cannot synthesize within their bodies.  Haematococcus pluvialis microalgae are widespread in nature and have replaced Arctic krill as a source for astaxanthin due to environmental concerns. 

Astaxanthin is an all-natural, renewable material extracted from microalgae using a non-traditional, proprietary method.  The astaxanthin extract contains no organic solvents and is characterized and standardized to ensure the highest quality. 

Astaxanthin Safety

  • There are no known side effects.


  1. Britton, G. 1995. Structure and properties of carotenoids in relation to function. FASEB J. 9:1551-8.
  2. Jorgensen, K. May 1993. Carotenoid scavenging of radicals.  Effect of carotenoid structure and oxygen partial pressure on antioxidative activity.  Zeitschrift Lebensm Unters Forsch, 196(5):423-429.
  3. Kurashige, M. et al. 1990. Inhibition of oxidative injury of biological membranes by astaxanthin.  Physiological Chemistry and Physics and Medical NMR, 22(1):27-38.
  4. O'Connor, I. et al. March 1998. Modulation of UVA light-induced oxidative stress by beta-carotene, lutein and astaxanthin in cultured fibroblasts. J Derm Science, 16(3):226-230.
  5. Terao, J July 1989. Antioxidant activity of beta-carotene-related carotenoids insolution.  Lipids 24(7):659-66.
  6. Tinker, J.J. et al. December 1994. Dietary carotenoids protect human cells . . . J Photochem and Photobiol 26(3):283-5.

Excerpts reprinted with exclusive permission from Source Naturals, Inc. 
Bulleted excerpts reprinted with exclusive permission of Health Plus, Inc.

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