I’ve been using astaxanthin for about six years to protect against sunburn.
Astaxanthin is a carotenoid that is in the same family of molecules as beta-carotene which makes carrots orange. It is produced naturally in the freshwater microalgae and has a blood-red color. These red microalgae are eaten by salmon, shrimp, crab and lobster and are responsible for their red coloring of the skin in these animals.
And it is this mechanism of the red astaxanthin traveling to the epidermal layer of the skin that provides its protection against UV rays. While the precise mechanism is not known, this paper highlights a clinical trial showing a benefit from astaxanthin on subjects who had their skin irradiated and took astaxanthin for nine weeks.
In this recent blog article, we highlighted how collagen helps with skin aging. Astaxanthin is another supplement to consider for those who want the best skin as you age.
The main reason I like astaxanthin is that it creates another important layer of protection against sun. If you’re like me, you’re very faithful in applying the first layer of sunscreen, however, the second layer 60-90 minutes later often gets pushed to 120 minutes.
So, this summer, keep applying sunscreen. Keep using your sun hats and sun shirts. But also try out astaxanthin. This is the brand I use off Amazon.