Believed to be the most powerful antioxidant in nature, Astaxanthin offers a huge range of health benefits. One interesting advantage of supplementing Astaxanthin is its ability to protect against DNA damage from radiation.
Derived from a microalgae, Haematoccus pluvialis, astaxanthin is the defence mechanism the algae use to protect itself in times of drought and harsh conditions. When water dries up this algae produces astaxanthin to protect itself from the ultraviolet radiation from the sun, which is why scientists have gone to test its ability to protect humans from radiation.
A recent study investigated the protective effects of astaxanthin against gamma radiation induced DNA damage. Mice were fed astaxanthin then exposed to gamma radiation. The cells collected in the mice fed astaxanthin showed less damage than those that were not fed astaxanthin.
A human study found those taking astaxanthin for 3 weeks could stay in the sun longer without getting burnt. It may not eliminate the risk of sunburn for everyone but astaxanthin can definitely reduce the severity of sunburn and help heal faster. Getting sunburnt can contribute to skin cancers and prematurely age the skin which is why a 2-3 week supplementation of astaxanthin is perfect to build up an extra tolerance from the sun.