If you consume superfoods or frequent health food stores, then you’ve likely heard of spirulina. Basically, it is a greenish blue alga like those that we can find on the surface of ponds. Although it might not seem very appetizing, its daily consumption has great contributions to our health.
Know what spirulina is, what are its wonderful properties and the benefits it contains.
What is spirulina?
Spirulina ( spirulina maxima ) is a unicellular alga that has a spiral shape (hence its name), and is greenish-blue in color due to the presence of chlorophyll that gives it its green color and of phycocyanin, a pigment that gives it its bluish color.
Spirulina is a superfood that offers more digestible proteins than beef and contains a surprising variety of nutritional elements: vitamins, microminerals, minerals, essential fatty acids, proteins, nucleic acids (DNA and RNA), chlorophyll, and a wide range of phytochemicals.
The main benefits that it can bring to our body are due to the presence of chlorophyll, which has been used favorably in a large series of ailments and diseases such as those mentioned below:
- Malnutrition and diabetes:
- Blood deficiencies;
- Chronic skin problems;
- Liver diseases;
- Allergies ;
- Heavy metal poisoning;
- Premature aging;
- Weight loss;
- Memory disorders;
- Physical and intellectual exhaustion;
The benefits of this food can be adequate to treat problems related to the brain, intoxication of the body and the contribution of minerals and vitamins to the body.
Consuming spirulina can help improve the following health conditions:
- Increases the positive intestinal flora;
- Inhibits the growth of fungi and bacteria;
- Provides energy;
- Promotes muscle development;
- Ideal for people with physical and intellectual wear;
- Helps increase school and sports performance in adolescents.
A nutritious and easy to digest food
Spirulina is an excellent aid in chronic diseases in elderly people, let’s see in detail what all the uses and benefits of this algae are:
- It is antirheumatic, anti-infectious, combats goiter, tones the endocrine glands and thus slows down aging.
- It has an antimicrobial activity.
- It is a brain nutrient.
- Auxiliary as a regenerator of the skin.
- It has high antioxidant power, since it is capable of counteracting the formation of free radicals.
- It promotes the growth of children.
- Useful in memory disorders.
- It is used as a supplement in strict weight loss regimens and in cases of malnutrition and convalescence.
Spirulina is one of the healthiest foods you can get as a defense system against the negative effects of a bad lifestyle, stress, pollution, radiation, and chemical intoxicants. Today the processed foods we consume are very low in nutrients, which causes us vulnerable health and very low energy.
Many of the nutrients recommended by experts are found in spirulina, it has the most powerful combination of essential nutrients ever seen in any food, and spirulina has a concentration of beta carotenes ten times higher than carrots.
It is the only food other than breast milk that contains gamma linolenic acid (GLA), studies show how a diet deficient in nutrients blocks the production of (GLA) in the body.
Iron is essential to build a strong system, paradoxically it is one of the minerals most commonly found in deficiency. The seaweed is very rich in iron, magnesium and other minerals and what makes them easily absorbed, which are of organic physiological origin and not pure minerals like the rest of the iron supplements.
One of the few deficiencies that up-to-date, conscientious nutritionists have found in the 100% vegetarian diet is vitamin B12, essential for a healthy nervous system and tissues.
This way of life has been renewing itself for more than three and a half million years, it is the oldest natural living food.
Consider it the most intelligent multi-mineral supplement, since it is alive and is the most refined that exists on the planet.
Spirulina Nutrition Facts
Here is a very complete information on the nutritional properties of this algae that is so healthy for a balanced diet and to provide the body with the minerals it needs:
- 26 times more calcium than cheese added since spirulina has no cholesterol.
- 15 times more calcium than soy.
- 40 times more calcium than fresh milk.
- 22 times more iron than beef liver.
- 32 times more iron than black beans.
- 34 times more iron than spinach.
- 83 times more iron than beef steak.
- 65 times more protein than soy.
- 47 times more protein than whole milk powder, yet milk has cholesterol.
- 70 times more protein than beef steak, yet steak has cholesterol.
- 99 times more protein than beans.
- 25 times more protein than the liver, the latter being very high in cholesterol.
- 60 times more beta carotene than beef liver.
- 2 times more beta carotene than peaches.
- 0 times more beta carotene than carrots.
- 76 times more beta carotene than cheese.
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)
- 9 times more vitamin B1 than pork.
- 6 times more vitamin B1 than pine nuts.
- 4 times more vitamin B1 than beef liver.
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavia)
- 4 times more vitamin B2 than beef liver.
- 3 times more vitamin B2 than whole milk powder.
- 2 times more vitamin B2 than mushrooms.
- 0 times more vitamin B2 than beef steak.
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
- 2 times more vitamin B3 than tuna in oil.
- 5 times more vitamin B3 than chicken breast with skin.
- 5 times more vitamin B3 than beef steak.
- 140 times more vitamin B3 than eggs.
Vitamin B6 (Pyrodoxin)
- 3 times more vitamin B6 than banana.
- 3 times more vitamin B6 than potatoes.
- 4 times more vitamin B6 than beef steak.
- 7 times more vitamin B6 than watermelon.
Vitamin B12 (Cyanokabalmin)
- 2 times more vitamin B12 than egg.
- 8 times more vitamin B12 than whole milk powder.
It should be noted that caution must be exercised with the origin of spirulina, trying to ensure that they are of good quality and of no doubt origin.
Is that some uncontrolled or poorly controlled crops can have metal contamination and cause diarrhea, vomiting, nausea and liver problems. It is advised that as soon as strange symptoms are felt from its consumption, it is suspended.
For its part, although it is estimated that there are no conflicts between a person who is pregnant or breastfeeding and the consumption of spirulina, it is advisable to consult with a health specialist before consuming it, likewise if you have any health problems.
Benefits of including spirulina in our daily diet
Its nutritional composition is similar to that of other sea vegetables such as kelp and chlorella. Although it is best known as an ingredient in green smoothies and energy foods, we should consume one tablespoon each day. There are more than 1000 scientific articles that talk about its wide range of health benefits.
Many people consumed spirulina as part of their diets for decades. However, the seventies had to arrive to be declared one of the “best foods for the future”.
Let’s take a look at the many ways a tablespoon of spirulina a day can benefit you.
1. Provides a powerful energy boost
There are very few people in our hectic modern world who could not need an extra boost of energy. This seaweed offers just that, due to its many nutrients, including B1, it can naturally increase energy levels. It is recommended to combine one teaspoon of spirulina powder with 12 ounces of fresh, organic lemon juice.
2. Supports brain health
Taking a daily tablespoon of this powdered seaweed helps protect the brain from degenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.
One study found spirulina neuroprotective effects due to its ability to decrease inflammation and scavenge free radicals. Research also showed that it helps increase productivity and concentration.
3. Detoxifies heavy metals
The chronic arsenic toxicity is a global problem. The vast majority of people in the world consume a high level of arsenic in their drinking water. The effects can be devastating and can be seen even years after exposure.
Spirulina is also very high in chlorophyll, which helps remove toxins from the blood while strengthening the immune system.
4. Improves muscle strength and endurance
One of the main contributing factors to muscle fatigue is exercise-induced oxidative stress damage. For this reason, consuming antioxidant-rich plant foods can prevent the problem or limit the damage. Eating this food has also been found to be beneficial in improving muscle strength and endurance.
5. Decreases the risk of cancer
Several studies suggest that spirulina increases the production of antibodies and other cells that enhance immunity. In this way it helps to avoid infection and the appearance of chronic diseases such as cancer. Spirulina is also rich in tetrapyrrolytic compounds closely related to bilirubin, a powerful antioxidant and antiproliferative agent.
6. Lowers blood sugar levels
Some animal studies have suggested that consuming spirulina can lower blood sugar levels.
Indeed, the results have shown that it can outperform some of the most common medications for treating diabetes. Other research on humans has shown that it can significantly lower blood sugar levels.
7. Reduces blood pressure
Thanks to the pigmentation of phycocyanin, spirulina offers antihypertensive effects. This means that it helps lower blood pressure, as it reverses endothelial dysfunction in cases of metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome is one of the primary causes of preventable diseases today.
8. Lowers cholesterol
Spirulina can also help lower blood cholesterol levels and prevent atherosclerosis.
The reduction of bad cholesterol is visible in people who consume it daily. Although for best results, daily consumption is recommended for a minimum period of 4 weeks.
9. Lowers the risk of stroke
Various investigations found that spirulina supplementation reduces the surface area of the aorta by 33% to 48%. This discovery suggests that spirulina can prevent atherosclerosis and subsequent stroke. In this way, consuming it regularly in our diet can reverse the damage caused by an unhealthy diet.
10. Fight against liver disease
Spirulina may be essential for those with chronic liver disease. Research has shown that it helps protect against liver cirrhosis, liver damage, and liver failure.
Scientists concluded that spirulina is beneficial for liver health. In addition to working as an antioxidant, eliminating free radicals, preventing liver damage and harmful metal chelators.
With all these benefits, we can really see that opting for a tablespoon of this superfood in our regular diet can make a big difference.