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Dr. Mercola Astaxanthin is a dietary supplement offered as a support for the health of the skin, brain, eyes, joints and bones. The formula is manufactured under the brand of Dr. Joseph Mercola, who is a licensed osteopathic physician trained in both traditional and natural medicine. Dr. Mercola runs a website designed to inform people about the products which can bring the most benefits to its users and expose those highly advertised formulas which are not only ineffective, but have a big contribution in worsening the ailments.
This dietary supplement also contains the omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid or ALA, because it is an excellent carrier for Astaxanthin. Astaxanthin is a substance belonging to the carotenoids group, the reddish pigment responsible for the color of salmon, lobster, trout or shrimps.
The antioxidant properties of ALA and Astaxanthin make Dr. Mercola Astaxanthin recommended for people who are experiencing skin problems (dry skin, age spots), people concerned with maintaining a healthy nervous system, healthy bones and joints, those who exercise and want to improve their endurance and for those who want to enhance their visual acuity.
Dr. Mercola Astaxanthin contains the following ingredients: Zanthin Astaxanthin complex (CO2 extract of Haematococcus pluvialis algae), omega-3 (ALA), Perilla Seed extract, Non-GMO Sunflower Lecithin O2B Botanical Peroxidation Blocker.
Dr. Mercola Astaxanthin’s therapeutic properties are based on two core active ingredients: Astaxanthin and the Omega-3 fatty acid ALA (known to have the capacity of transporting Astaxanthin throughout the body).
ALA, as all Omega-3 fatty acids, are considered essential fatty acids because they cannot be produced by the human body but are absolutely necessary for human health. They play a very important function in maintaining a healthy brain function (memory related processes like focus, concentration and recall and brain performance). Decreased levels of Omega-3 fatty acids have been observed in individuals suffering from attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and so supplementation with these essential nutrients may benefit these patients. However, further research is needed to determine the effect of fatty-acids on behavioral issues and learning for people suffering of ADHD.
Studies have also shown that Omega-3 fatty acids may have benefits in the treatment of childhood depression. Omega-3′s in general have strong blood thinning properties, and hence may harm people suffering from blood clotting disorders, increase the risk of bleeding or interfere with anticoagulant medication.
Astaxanthin, a reddish pigment from the carotenoids group is considered as a potential support in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, macular degeneration, skin damage and high cholesterol. More studies are needed to determine the effectiveness of this substance for these uses. Astaxanthin is considered potentially safe when consumed from natural sources. The side effects of Astaxanthin within supplements or skin care products are yet to be determined.
Dr. Mercola Astaxanthin formula also contains a Perilla seed extract as an additional support for a faster absorption of Astaxanthin. This formula is recommended for the use of adults in doses of 1 capsule daily. No side effects or precautions are mentioned for the formula.
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- Researched active ingredients, with evidence to back up part of the core benefits
- Affordable price for a month’s supply (approximately $20)
- Discounts and other promotional offers offered by some retailers under certain conditions
- Insufficient evidence of the effectiveness of the active ingredients (further research needed to determine it for some recommended uses)
- Mixed reviews from consumers
- No clinical trials involving the product
Dr. Mercola Astaxanthin is a nutritional supplement advertised as an excellent source of the omega-3 fatty acid ALA and Astaxanthin. Astaxanthin is becoming more and more popular within this type of dietary supplements due to its claimed effectiveness (it is advertised as being 65 times more powerful than Vitamin C, 14 times stronger than vitamin E, and 54 times more efficient than beta-carotene). However, these claims are not supported by clinical research or conclusive clinical trial results.
The formula itself has not been the subject of scientific research. Although ALA is considered potentially safe when consumed in the recommended doses (only a few mild side effects have been reported), the potential harmful effects of Astaxanthin based supplements are still unknown. We recommend that you consult a healthcare provider and decide together if this is the right formula for you.