One of the best ways to protect your body is with nutrients that come from plants that are under attack. For instance, when fungi attack grapes, they produce resveratrol to fight off the invader. That makes resveratrol a great nutrient for fighting fungal infections in people. Well, another nutrient that comes from a plant under attack can protect your eyes and stop ulcers.
The plant in this case is an algae. More specifically, it's the microalgae Haematococcus pluvialis. As you may know, algae need a lot of water. They thrive in wet locations. But when this particular algae runs out of water, it becomes particularly vulnerable to UV radiation. So when it starts to dry out, it begins to produce large amounts of the nutrient astaxanthin.
Astaxanthin is an antioxidant with free radical scavenger abilities that are 65 times greater than vitamin C. It's 14 times stronger than vitamin E. And its ability to protect your cells is stronger than lycopene, beta carotene, and lutein.
So why does this algae produce astaxanthin? When UV light attacks the algae, it causes oxidation to occur. This oxidation destroys the cells. But astaxanthin neutralizes the oxidation process and prevents the UV damage.
In people, this protection is most evident in our eyes. Our eyes are particularly sensitive to oxidative stress. It can lead to cataracts, macular degeneration, glaucoma, and other less common eye conditions. That's what makes astaxanthin particularly effective at fighting eye disease. But new research shows this supernutrient can help a lot more than your eyes.
In a new study, researchers from the Central Food Technological Research Institute in India wanted to evaluate astaxanthin's effect on gastric ulcers. In this study, the researchers gave rats various doses of astaxanthin (100, 250 and 500 microg/kg). After eating the antioxidants, the rats then ate ethanol to induce gastric ulcers.
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The researchers found that the highest astaxanthin doses (500 microg/kg) can effectively protect your gut from ulcers. In fact, the astaxanthin prevented the ulcers 23 times better than the common proton pump blocking anti-ulcer drug omeprazole. What's more, the astaxanthin also raised the levels of superoxide dismutase, catalase, and glutathione peroxidase. These are antioxidant enzymes that help with digestion and benefit your overall health.
I've talked in the past about how good gut health keeps the rest of your body healthy. This includes all of your organs and your eyes. To protect your body and your eyes, the usual recommended dose is 4 mg daily. You can find this amount in Advanced Vision Formula. As you can see, this formula is good for a lot more than just your eyes.
Your insider for better health,
Steve Kroening is the editor of Nutrient Insider, a twice-a-week email newsletter that brings you the latest healing breakthroughs from the world of nutrition and dietary supplements. For over 20 years, Steve has worked hand-in-hand with some of the nation's top doctors, including Drs. Robert Rowen, Frank Shallenberger, Nan Fuchs, William Campbell Douglass, and best-selling author James Balch. Steve is the author of the book Practical Guide to Home Remedies. As a health journalist, Steve's articles have appeared in countless magazines, blogs, and websites.
Kamath, Burde Sandesh;Srikanta, Belagihally Manjegowda;Dharmesh, Shylaja Mallaiah;Sarada, Ravi;Ravishankar, Gokare Aswathanarayana, European journal of pharmacology, 2008.