Unlock radiant skin: Discover 4 amazing benefits of seaweed for skin health | Health - Hindustan Times

Unlock radiant skin: Discover 4 amazing benefits of seaweed for skin health

By, New Delhi
Mar 10, 2024 11:46 AM IST

Discover the ocean's beauty secret: seaweed. Learn how this marine marvel can transform your skincare routine and unlock radiant, healthy skin.

Amongst the countless marine organisms, seaweeds are considered one of the richest sources of biologically active ingredients having powerful biological activities. Seaweeds or marine macroalgae are macroscopic multicellular eukaryotic photosynthetic organisms and are classified in the presence of photosynthetic pigments such as red algae, green algae and brown algae.

Packed with nutrients and minerals, seaweed offers incredible benefits for your skin.(Wikipedia/Unsplash)
Packed with nutrients and minerals, seaweed offers incredible benefits for your skin.(Wikipedia/Unsplash)

Seaweed-based cosmetic products have risen up in their demand because they provide an alternative to synthetic ones. Seaweed has shown multiple skin benefits, such as moisture retention, cell renewal activation, cell metabolism, regulation of sebaceous secretion and tissue drainage, promoting blood circulation, and increasing skin resistance. (Also read: The role of diet in skin health: What to eat for a healthy complexion )

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Marine macroalgae produce both primary metabolites, including proteins, amino acids, polysaccharides, fatty acids, etc., and secondary metabolites, such as phenolic compounds, pigments, sterols, vitamins, and other bioactive components. Because of so many bioactive constituents, they are found in many industrial applications like food, pharmaceuticals, medicinal, cosmeceutical and nutraceuticals.

Top 4 Skin Benefits of Seaweed

Dr. Neha Sharma, Dermatologist and Founder of Estique clinic, Gurugram shared with HT Lifestyle 4 amazing benefits of seaweed for skin health.

1) Seaweeds are well-known for many different types of polysaccharides, such as chitin, fucoidans, agar, carrageenan, alginates, ulvans, terpenoids, and tocopherol. The polysaccharides are the most significant and beneficial compounds present in macroalgae and characterized by their biological skin beneficial activity. They exhibit antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antiviral, anticoagulant, and antilipidemic properties. They also cause tyrosinase inhibition so help in pigmentary disorders. These polysaccharides also inhibit matrix metalloproteinase induced by UVB radiation so they play a very crucial role in photoaging. They also neutralize the free radicals generated by UV rays.

2) Seaweeds are also rich in different types of amino acids which are building blocks of proteins. Moreover, macroalgae contain different types of aliphatic amino acids, hydroxyl-group-containing amino acids, aromatic amino acids, mycosporine amino acids, etc. Skin-benefiting properties of these amino acids include photoprotective effect, antioxidant effect, and anti-inflammatory effect. They also provide immense hydration to the skin and act as natural sunscreen.

3) Next compounds that seaweeds are rich in are Phenolic compounds such as catechins, flavonoids, and anthocyanins. These types of phenolic compounds revealed their effect on MMP (Matrix Metalloproteinase complex) inhibition, as well as the reduction of collagen degradation. Catechin and some other phytocompounds, such as flavonoids, polyphenols, and carotenoids, showed free radical scavenging. Moreover, brown macroalgae-derived compounds, such as phlorotannins, exhibit skin-whitening/antityrosinase effects, whereas zeaxanthin extracts showed skin-whitening activity. These compounds also exhibit anti-haluronidase activity and hence play a major role in antiaging.

4) Marine algae contain a broad range of photosynthetic pigments chlorophylls, carotenoids (carotenes, xanthophylls, fucoxanthin, and peridinin), and phycobilins (phycocyanin and phycoerythrin). Red algae contain chlorophyll, phycobilin, carotenoids, β carotene, lutein, phycocyanin, and phycoerythrin Whereas brown algae possess chlorophyll a, c, carotenoids, fucoxanthin, and other pigments. Due to the richness of diversified pigments’ profile, these seaweed are used in various applications, such as photoprotection, anti-inflammatory effects, anticancer effects, and the inhibition of cell proliferation.

Because of multiple bioactive molecules, dermatologists have focused their attention on marine organisms as an additional source of novel and useful natural ingredients. With more seaweeds being used because of their anti-photoaging and other potential skin benefit effects, the demand for the use of seaweeds in cosmetic and skincare industries will grow globally.

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