Astaxanthin (asta-zan-thin) is a natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrient found in marine organisms, including microalgae, shrimp, salmon and trout.

It is the natural substance that gives some marine life their distinct red color. Salmon ingest astaxanthin by eating certain algae; and it is believed to protect salmon from the stress and trauma experienced when swimming upstream to spawn.

The good news is that no one has to swim the oceans searching for algae to get this prized nutrient. Astaxanthin is available in vitamin/dietary supplement form at your local health food store.

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Research supports that astaxanthin has potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, with additional properties that may be helpful reducing the complications of COVID-19. Astaxanthin is proven to reduce inflammation at its source, without the potentially harmful side effects of common anti-inflammatories and pain relievers. Astaxanthin has undergone extensive safety testing and has a long history of use in human health studies.

Astaxanthin also possess promising antiviral effects by interfering with and stopping how viruses behave and make people sick. Recent analysis indicates that there is a relationship between people’s stress and inflammation levels, related to the triggering of COVID-19 infection and its disease complications.

So, scientists and doctors are interested in providing novel treatments with both anti-inflammatory and antioxidative effects as a strategy for preventing the progression of COVID-19 from a simple, albeit serious infection, into a chronic, systemic or fatal condition.

Astaxanthin has also been favorably reviewed for its use in addressing other inflammatory-based health conditions including, reduction of cholesterol levels, reduction of elevated triglycerides, reduction in blood clot formation, reduction of liver enzymes and liver cell damage. More than, 2,000 peer-reviewed papers featuring astaxanthin have been published in established scientific journals.

Of course, an ounce of prevention remains worth a pound of cure; and understanding the risks and benefits of any new health regime is best determined in consultation with a medical doctor familiar with your personal health history.

More details can be found at www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7436866.

Contact David Bibbey, L.Ac. (licensed acupuncturist) at Alternative Primary Care, Crystal River, phone 352-464-1645.

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