In nature, Zeaxanthin always accompanies Lutein. Lutein is a natural pigment of the carotenoid family. Lutein and Zeaxanthin are the main Xanthophylls (Xanthophylls belong to a class of organic compounds called carotenoids) in marigold flowers and also in vegetables and fruits. In nature, both nutrients seem to absorb excess light energy to prevent damage to plants from too much sunlight, especially from high-energy light rays called blue light. They seem to play the same role to eye sight in humans.
Whilst both nutrients are found in many green leafy plants and colourful fruits and vegetables, lutein and zeaxanthin are found in high concentrations in the macula of the human eye, giving the macula its yellowish colour. The macula is the most important part of the eye. It is the most sensitive part of the central retina, responsible for visual acuity and colour vision.
The Lutein helps to protect the retina from damaging light rays and prevent macular degeneration.
Lutein appears to have important antioxidant functions in the body. Along with other natural antioxidants, including vitamin C, beta carotene and vitamin E, these xanthophylls guard the body from damaging effects of free radicals, which are unstable molecules that can destroy cells and play a role in many diseases.
Astaxanthin is a powerful antioxidant that exists naturally in various types of marine life, such as krill, shrimp and salmon. Regarded as a carotenoid, this naturally occurring nutrient is significantly more powerful than antioxidants such as Vitamin E. This particular carotenoid can also be synthetically produced.
Astaxanthin is valuable as an antioxidant for humans. This nutrient is ideal for boosting the function of the immune system, and as a result, it can have a positive impact on preventing the development of heart disease. Due to the fact that astaxanthin crosses the blood-brain barrier, it is also able to benefit the function of the brain, eyes, and the nervous system.
The effectiveness of astaxanthin as an antioxidant is considerably higher than other carotenoids. In general, astaxanthin is more effective than both lycopene and lutein and is even considered at least ten times more effective than beta-carotene. In comparison with Vitamin E, this supplement may even be up to five hundred more times powerful.