Astaxanthin: A Potential Treatment in Disease and Aging, Lifespan Increase

That’s excellent news for men. Why wouldn’t this affect women? I would assume their gut microbiome would be affected as well?

This may help close the gap between male and female life expectancies.

One concerning thing is the increase in cholesterol for one strain of mice taking Astaxanthin. There was a jump in both LDL and HDL cholesterol. Maybe that cancels each other out???

I’m not a fan of do not age but I sprung for a year’s supply of their SIRT6 activator. Just for fun.

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What I find really interesting is that Richard Miller at the ITP mentioned that Astaxanthin’s 12% lifespan improvement (from incomplete data) was only for the male mice, the females saw no statistically significant benefit (it seems).

So - perhaps these two factors are related…


The anti-aging effects of astaxanthin have been attributed to its antioxidant property and the modulation of key genes in the IIS signaling and TOR pathway [6,7]; however, the exact mechanisms are still unclear. In this study, we examined the alterations of mRNA and miRNA in C. elegans treated with astaxanthin using RNA-seq. A total of 190 mRNAs and 6 microRNAs (miRNAs) were significantly changed by astaxanthin treatment in C. elegans.

As expected, the results showed that astaxanthin significantly up-regulated pathways related to longevity regulation. The enrichment analyses of GO terms and KEGG pathways demonstrated that the most prominent function of the genes altered by astaxanthin treatment was related to innate immunity, lipid metabolism, heat shock response, cytochrome P450 family and UGTs (Figure 3). It is well known that stress, immunity and aging are inter-related [39]. In fact, the most dramatic transcriptional changes that occur during aging are associated with immunity [40]. Heat-shock response, which declines in potency over the lifetime, not only has a significant relationship with longevity but also mediates pathogenic resistance against bacterial infection [41]. Genes encoding small heat shock proteins, which are transcriptionally activated by DAF-16 and HSF-1, make a substantial contribution to lifespan extension [42]. To cope with toxic stress, C. elegans utilize a series of enzymes for detoxification. Cytochrome P450s are the principle phase 1 enzymes for xenobiotic metabolism, catalyzing the oxidation of environmental chemicals as well as endogenous compounds, such as steroids and fatty acids, facilitating their degradation or elimination [43]. UGTs are the major effectors of phase 2 metabolism, which catalyze conjugative reactions, increasing the solubility and excretion of toxic compounds. The efficacy of the detoxification system is closely linked to the aging process and longevity [21]. Hence, astaxanthin may extend the lifespan of C. elegans by improving their capability to cope with environment insults and endogenous stress conditions.

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Goes through the entire article, with a picture of the molecule at the top and never says whether they are identical. Apparently they make one chemically out of a petroleum product and another is made by genetically engineered yeast.

He also doesn’t mention the cost.

We cover the “natural vs. synthetic astaxanthin” issue in this post here: Astaxanthin, Natural vs. Synthetic - Your Thoughts?

What I find interesting is that its the synthetic astaxanthin that is being used in the National Institutes on Aging ITP study that in preliminary results is showing a 12% median lifespan increase in the male mice.

I don’t find Mercola info very trustworthy… in the Wikipedia entry (and many other places I’ve read about him) he seems to not follow the science very closely, or contradicts the best science… in Wikipedia they note:

The site promotes disproven health ideas, including the notions that homeopathy can treat autism and that vaccinations have hidden detriments to human health.[2] An article in BusinessWeek criticized his website as using aggressive direct-marketing tactics:

Mercola gives the lie to the notion that holistic practitioners tend to be so absorbed in treating patients that they aren’t effective businesspeople. While Mercola on his site seeks to identify with this image by distinguishing himself from “all the greed-motivated hype out there in health-care land”, he is a master promoter, using every trick of traditional and Internet direct marketing to grow his business … He is selling health-care products and services, and is calling upon an unfortunate tradition made famous by the old-time snake oil salesmen of the 1800s.[6]


Here is my question to people: Given what you know about natural and synthetic astaxanthin as shown in this post: Astaxanthin, Natural vs. Synthetic - Your Thoughts?

Which Version of Astaxanthin Would You Buy?

  • Natural Astaxanthin, at the typical Price of $4.15 per 100mg
  • Synthetic Astaxanthin at a price of approx. $1.00 per 100mg

0 voters

It looks like this is the article where Mercola got his information:

The article says it makes a bio identical molecule to the natural one and they think they can compete with the synthetic for price. Made with GE yeast.

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Astaxanthin Improves Endurance in Older Adults

This antioxidant does so by decreasing lactic acid.

the 6-minute walking test demonstrated that the participants from the astaxanthin group increased their walking distance. At the same time, astaxanthin supplementation did not improve muscle strength as shown by hand grip and knee extension tests.

In addition, the researchers measured the change in the participants’ lactic acid levels after the 6-minute walking test pre- and post-supplementation. Astaxanthin supplementation was shown to decrease lactic acid production in these participants.


Research Paper:

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Astaxanthin has shown a variety of clinical benefits with good tolerability and safety. In double-blind, randomized controlled trials, it reduced oxidative stress by 5 mg or 20 mg/day in obese and overweight subjects and 5 mg, 20 mg or 40 mg/day in smokers [11, 12]. The results showed that oxidative DNA damage was inhibited, C-reactive protein and other inflammatory biomarkers were decreased, and tuberculin skin test immunity was enhanced [13, 14]. In another trial, daily astaxanthin doses of 6, 12, or 18 mg decreased triglycerides and increased HDL cholesterol and improved blood flow in microcirculation models


It does seem to have a very small advantage over placebo.

Placebo lost a little weight, astaxanthin lost more.
Placebo lost muscle mass % and gained body fat %, astaxanthin gained muscle mass% and gained body fat %. Not sure how they could do that without gaining weight. What do we have besides muscle and fat? Bone?

Anyway it is a very expensive supp. and simple and cheap things like glynac should be studied more closely. Everybody is still looking at the one study where they took 9 grams of NAC/day.

I agree. They need to do more GlyNAC studies.

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Very interesting, thanks for sharing.


  1. Sekikawa T et al. “Effects of diet containing astaxanthin on visual function in healthy individuals: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel study.” Journal of Clinical Biochemistry and Nutrition. Published online October 18, 2022.


I wonder if it would be a good counter to Metformin. Increasing lactic acid seems to be one of the downsides.

I started astaxanthin back up at 24mg/day. I notice very little from it, but I’ve taken it in the past without any issue.

The most noticeable difference is I tan better and sunburn less. Otherwise pretty much nada.

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I’m curious if anyone noticed a drop in LDL or ApoB on Asta?

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I haven’t measured or tracked this, but I’m going to try another round of high Astaxanthin testing starting in a week or so. I’m thinking of testing 200mg to 400mg / day Astaxanthin levels. Previously have done as high as 240mg/day testing with no issues.

Will do pre-test bloodwork and post-test bloodwork. Will report when I get the final results.


That is a fair amount astaxanthine capsules or do you have access to astaxanthine in powder form?