Astaxanthin - Natural Sunscreen


...elusive dreamer
Apr 5, 2009
:sunshine: Astaxanthin is a member of the carotenoid family, which is a group of plant chemicals that are used by many species of flora to ward off damaging effects of the sun. A natural sunscreen, astaxanthin has been protecting plants for thousands of years. Astaxanthin is also present in the many animals that eat plants, especially algae. These animals include mostly seafood, such as salmon, shrimp, crab, and lobster, but also include flamingos.

Unfortunately for humans, simply consuming foods rich in astaxanthin is not enough to prevent sunburn; however, taking the antioxidant as a dietary supplement in pill form may be beneficial. As a powerful substance that can infiltrate every part of the body (cells, brain, nervous system, eyes, organs, and skin), astaxanthin can cross the blood-brain barrier, infiltrate the blood stream, and provide benefits to every cell in the human body.

But how does this antioxidant prevent sunburn, specifically? The sun's rays damage the skin through free radicals, which are also responsible for causing premature signs of aging and some cancers. Counteracting the activities of free radicals with antioxidants is important in preventing damage, such as sunburn, and astaxanthin is one of the most powerful antioxidants in the body.

Building up enough astaxanthin to effectively prevent sun damage may take several weeks, prompting many people to rely upon over-the-counter sunscreens; however, the over-the-counter brands contain a great deal of harmful chemicals and also cause free radical damage, among other things. This is one of the many cases where products that are meant to protect the body cause just as much harm, if not more, than the damage they are meant to avoid.

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Active member
May 25, 2009
Consider this in conjunction with Healthy Fellow's Natural Sunscreen Options and my suggestions in the comments to reduce iron overload (iron's released when your skin burns and it's the damage from iron that leads to skin cancer) by blood donation and melatonin use (or improving melatonin secretion).

With regard to the comment about most commercial sunscreens containing harmful ingredients that do more harm than good here is a graph that plots sunscreen sales with melanoma incidence and it makes you think.

It comes from

Skin Cancer/Sunscreen - the Dilemma - UCTV