The Anti-Aging Power of Kale: Harnessing Nature's Secret for Youthful Skin

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With billions spent every year on exotic chemical- and toxin-based anti-aging schemes like Botox, what if the key to unlocking the fountain of youth was nestled in the curly leaves of kale?

In a world obsessed with reversing the signs of aging, a groundbreaking study sheds light on an unexpected hero: kale. This study reveals the significant anti-aging effects of carotenoid-rich curly kale extract on skin health, demonstrating improvements in skin carotenoid levels and the collagen I/elastin aging index.

Study Design and Methods

Conducted on 29 healthy female volunteers aged between 40 and 56, this study evaluated the effects of daily supplementation with a curly kale extract, rich in carotenoids. Each participant received a dose of kale extract containing 1650 µg of carotenoids daily, in the form of three capsules which also included chlorophyll, lutein, beta-carotene, lycopene, and zeaxanthin. Using advanced noninvasive techniques, researchers measured cutaneous carotenoids and the collagen I/elastin aging index of the dermis at the beginning, after 5 months, and again at 10 months of supplementation.1

Results and Implications

The results were striking. The group receiving kale extract exhibited a significant increase in skin carotenoid concentrations and improvements in the collagen I/elastin aging index, particularly in sun-exposed areas like the cheek. These findings suggest that the natural carotenoid-rich kale extract not only prevents aging-related collagen I degradation but also enhances the skin's extracellular matrix.2

Plausible Mechanism of Action: Chlorophyll and Mitochondrial Health

The anti-aging effects of kale are likely derived from a complex set of factors, i.e. the interplay of antioxidants, nutrients, and perhaps even miRNAs found within its exosomes. But one novel way in which kale may produce anti-aging effect is through its chlorophyll content. Chlorophyll, structurally similar to human blood, can capture photonic energy from sunlight, facilitating enhanced energy production and efficiency in the mitochondria. This process, known as photoheterotrophy, enhances mitochondrial ATP production, potentially leading to improved skin health and longevity without increasing oxidative stress. This mechanism aligns with the findings of a study published in the Journal of Cell Science, highlighting the role of chlorophyll pigments in enabling mammalian mitochondria to capture photonic energy and produce ATP, as well as mitigating aging when there is sunlight exposure -- exactly an effect observed in this latest clinical trial.3


The study on curly kale extract presents compelling evidence of its anti-aging benefits, particularly for skin health. Regular inclusion of organic, pesticide-free kale in the diet, rich in chlorophyll, offers a natural, plant-based approach to mitigating signs of aging, both through boosting antioxidant levels and by tapping into the power of photonic energy for enhanced mitochondrial function and skin rejuvenation.

Learn more about the profound health benefits of kale here.

Learn more about the health benefits of green leafy vegetables on the database here.

Learn more about natural approaches to reversing or mitigating Skin Aging here.


1. Meinke, M.C., et al. "Influences of Orally Taken Carotenoid-Rich Curly Kale Extract on Collagen I/Elastin Index of the Skin." Nutrients 2017, 9, 775; doi:10.3390/nu9070775.

2. Ibid.

3. Sayer Ji, "Amazing Discovery: Plant Blood Enables Your Cells To Capture Sunlight Energy", May 12, 2015.

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