Health Benefits of Spirulina
Posted by Wen Dan Jiang on
Health Benefits of Spirulina
For decades, Spirulina has been utilized to support a lot of health issues, involving fatigue, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, and bacterial or viral problems. Spirulina is the oldest form on Earth. In fact, this blue-green microalgae is also responsible for the formation of the oxygen in the planet's atmosphere. Spirulina is the world's first superfood and one of the most nutritious foods on Earth.
Spirulina offers a variety of health benefits that you cannot ignore so easily. It also gives an instant boost to your energy level, while aiding to enhance your tolerance or endurance and decrease fatigue. Spirulina may also help improve the immune system and give fantastic support for your heart, liver, and kidneys. It is also a natural detoxifier, oxygenate your blood, and aid in cleansing your body from toxins and other impurities that can be leading triggers to illnesses or other health conditions
Here, I am going to talk about Spirulina in detail with its exceptional health benefits. Don't miss any critical information and read till the end!
Where Does Spirulina Come From?
Scientific studies indicate that cyanobacteria, the class of Spirulina, were among the first organisms to exist on this planet, as long as 2 billion years ago. The most remarkable thing is that this ancient strain of Spirulina had grown naturally, without using organic fertilizers from other animals or plants.
The fact is, many professionals believe that it played a remarkable role in the Earth's oxygen formation. Further, due to the oxygen being created by cyanobacteria, it is considered that another life was enabled to grow some 3000 million years later when the 1st simple life kinds came into being. Overall you can say that it has an impressive life history that you should know about.
Health Benefits of Spirulina
- Spirulina as a multivitamin
Spirulina is rich in nutrients. Single tablespoon of almost 7 grams of powder spirulina in the dried form contain protein approximately 4 grams vitamin riboflavin, nearly 15%, and vitamin B1 thiamine 11%, vitamin B3 niacin 4%. However, a small tablespoon of Spirulina can give us a minimal amount of fat.
Almost that is one gram, including the fatty acids that are Omega 6 and Omega 3 in an approximate ratio of 1.5 and 1.0. The quality of protein that it delivers is superb; it gives us. Experts say that Spirulina also contains vitamin B12, but it is not useful for a human being.
- Spirulina as an antioxidant in our body
Due to antioxidant property of Spirulina, it can protect us from following harms;
- mitochondrial activities
- tissue trauma
- reperfusion damage
- excessive exercise
- environmental pollution
- consumption of certain foods
- industrial solvents
- exposure to chemicals pesticides or drugs
It can also protect us from cell damage. It can also protect us from heart disease and certain cancerous diseases.
- Spirulina against cholesterol
Spirulina is considered the best medicine against the LDL and triglyceride. People suffering from the triglyceride level and bad cholesterol that is LDL are treated with Spirulina. It also gives rise to HDL cholesterol that is good for our health. All this task is related to the liver. It boosts the activities of the liver for the destruction of cholesterol. Study with the people of cholesterol showed that taking 1 gram of Spirulina a day can lower their triglyceride level up to 16.9% as compared to others. The average dose given to cholesterol patients is 5 grams a day.
- Spirulina preventing peroxidation
It not only gives rise to HDL, but it also prevents peroxidation. Peroxidation Is oxidation of LDL cholesterol in our body. Oxidation of LDL cholesterol can have a harmful impact on human health. A study of 37 people with type 2 diabetes taking 8 grams of Spirulina revealed that they reduced their oxidative damage to a great extent and increased their antioxidant enzyme.
In the end, we can say that structures in our body can be oxidized that may lead to the happening of diseases, but Spirulina can control all these diseases preventing you from a heart attack.
Spirulina as an anticancer drug
Spirulina can reduce the size of the tumor and the chances of getting cancer to a great extent. A study in India was performed with 87 peoples. All of them were suffering from submucous fibrosis. All were given a dose of 1 gram spirulina a day for an entire year. At the end of the study, 45% of the groups reported that their submucous fibrosis is no more than the other people.
After that, people also said when they stopped taking Spirulina, half of them developed submucous fibrosis again. It boosts the immune system of human beings and provides immunity against a lot of bacteria causing inflammation.
- Spirulina reducing blood pressure
Blood pressure is the primary disease that causes too many e problems in our body, for example, heart and kidney diseases or brain stroke. Studies revealed that one gram of Spirulina does not affect the human body. Still, a dose of 5 grams a day can reduce your blood pressure to a great extent.
Doctors do not recommend it due to such property because it can drive you to other significant factors caused by lower blood pressure. It not only minimizes blood pressure, but It also gives rise to the production of nitric oxide. That is a signal for the blood vessels to dilate and relax when needed.
- Spirulina against anemia
Anemia is a blood disease that is only happening in older adults that may cause weakness. Spirulina's role is to boost up the production of hemoglobin and red blood cells in the body. It gives rise to the creation of iron in the human body. A study of 40 people suffering from anemia revealed that Spirulina's use increased their hemoglobin production.
It boosts red blood cells, and their immune function also improves. However, this statement has not been verified by WHO, but further studies are going on to prove this statement.
- Spirulina Improving stamina
Spirulina helps a lot in improving the physical life of a human. It has been noted by various experiments that Spirulina not only enhances our muscles but also gives us extra stamina for hard physical activities. Naturally, it boosts the production of hemoglobin in our body that leads to high oxygen intake in our collection. Also, it gives rise to the creation of RBCs in the human body. We are thus making our bodies eligible for hard physical work. High hemoglobin level helps our body in high oxygen intake, whereas high RBCs level helps the high circulation of nutrients in our collection.
Spirulina controlling sugar level
Spirulina is the most effective drug controlling sugar cravings. Especially in diabetic patients, it is found that it reduces their blood sugar level to a great extent compared to the most famous drug metformin for diabetic patients. In a study of 25 people, 2 grams intake of Spirulina a day for diabetic type 2 patients helped a lot in diabetic reduction. Also, blood testing of these patients revealed that the HBA1C level in such patients reduced by 1%. This one percent reduction in the HBA1C level can reduce the death rate by 23%.
- May Improve Muscle Strength and Endurance
Oxidative damage due to workout is a leading cause of muscle stiffness or fatigue. Specific plant foods have antioxidant characteristics that can aid athletes, or physically active people reduce this disturbance.
It is exceptionally beneficial, as specific research pointed to promoting muscle strength or endurance. One recent study boosted endurance, mainly maximizing the time it took for individuals to become fatigued.
- High Nutritional values
Spirulina is enriched in nutrients. It contains copper 21% and iron 11% and a minute amount of magnesium, potassium, manganese, and other small nutrients that we need in our daily lives. If we examine a tablespoon of Spirulina, it contains
- 4 grams of proteins
- 0.5 gram of fats
- 2 mg of iron
- 8 mg of phosphorus
- 95 mg of potassium
- 0.7 mg of Vitamin C
- 73 mg sodium
- 14 mg magnesium
- 8 mg calcium
- 1.6 grams of carbohydrate
However, it also contains a minute quantity of riboflavin, niacin, folate, and vitamin B6, vitamin A and Vitamin K. In short, we can say that Spirulina is a must part of a balanced diet.
Spirulina for weight loss
- Spirulina helps us a lot with weight loss techniques. Dieticians recommend its usage for a person struggling for weight loss. One tablespoon of Spirulina can deliver 21 calories. By following the diet plan, it might be possible that we have to suffer nutrition deficiency. Spirulina overcomes our calorie consumption and gives us all the necessary nutrition that we need in our daily lives. Also, it has one more benefit that its dose is in powder form. It is low in volume as compared to other foodstuffs. Even after drinking water, there is no chance to expand in size.
- Spirulina as a metabolism booster
With an increase in Hemoglobin and RBC production, it is clear that it also boosts our metabolism. Blood circulation in our body is increased to a great extent. An increase in blood circulation results in the circulation of nutrients in our body. A person feels more energetic when his metabolism boosts. Not only this muscle power is also increased, and nutritional consumption also increases.
In a study of people who intake 6 grams of Spirulina a day found a lot of benefits in weight loss, increased metabolism, stomach health, hemoglobin, and RBCs production.
- Reducing allergic reactions
Spirulina helps a lot in the reduction of allergic reactions in our bodies. It does not matter which type of allergic reaction it is. It can be due to pets, pollens, or dust. All these reactions are allergic rhinitis. Some studies say that Spirulina can improve symptoms of rhinitis. Specifically, it can enhance nasal inflammation and reduce histamine levels in the body. Also, it is useful in case of
- Runny nose
- Nasal congestion
However, all these are just personal observations. Further studies at the international level are needed to prove all these facts.
How to Eat Spirulina
The two most typical types of commercially present Spirulina are tablets or powered. It is also an element in a particular protein and energy-enhancing powder mixes. You may stir a little spoonful of Spirulina powder into a glass of juice or water and drink it straight, or you may include some to a smoothie.
A small quantity of deeply-pigmented Spirulina will transform the color of your drink into a deep blue-green, nearly black. You should place a glass of water handy to stop a blue-green teeth situation. You may also find it in different kinds of dessert offerings at health food restaurants.
Spirulina is often added to truffle-style energy balls or raw chocolate brownies, prepared with puréed dates, coconut, and other natural substances.
Some individuals consider its slightly savory, sea vegetable taste off-putting, Although Spirulina intense earthiness may aid offset a sweet smoothie or juice. If you want a perfect smoothie with it, you should balance out the overall flavor by mixing its powder with fresh sweet fruits such as pineapple mango and banana.
If you go for juice, you should stir Spirulina into a naturally sweet pineapple or orange juice. The one thing you don't need to do is try a spoonful of powder by itself.
How to Use Spirulina Effectively
There are plenty of ways to use Spirulina other than just including it to smoothies (although that's one of your favorite things!) that I mentioned above. This blue, green algae superfood offers eight crucial amino acids, making it a fantastic whole protein source. It is enriched with iron, antioxidants, and vitamins A, E. Therefore, it is a superfood superstar.
Below are some of the delicious ways you can utilize it!
- Ice Cream
You can make your favorite ice-cream by using Spirulina. Produced by a Registered Dietitian, Spirulina ice cream recipe is prepared from cacao nibs, agave syrup, coconut milk, and a bit of Spirulina for a tasty green vegan dessert. You may even include mint extract for mint cacao chip ice cream.
It is basically avocado season, so get benefits of this creamy superfood by preparing your own fresh guacamole at home. Avocados are rich in essential minerals, vitamins and healthy fats, therefore including a small quantity of Spirulina will power your party dip with extra nutrients.
You should utilize two teaspoons of Spirulina per avocado in your recipe. You can make the guacamole and then sprinkle in the Spirulina with the other spices.
- Salad Dressing
You can consume your dark leafy greens with Spirulina right to the dressing. Make an easy vinaigrette with olive oil or vinegar, and utilize two teaspoons of Spirulina powder for every tablespoon of olive oil. Shake it thoroughly! You may even include Spirulina to store-bought dressings, or may simply sprinkle it over your green salad.
- Power Cookies
You can eat Spirulina powder cookies that are a perfect combination of healthy plus tasty cookies. This recipe inspires individuals to live better and consume a sweet treat while obtaining a health kick from superfoods such as Spirulina, mulberries, and goji berries. It is a perfect option for all of us!
This Spirulina recipe shows how versatile the blue, green algae can be. Even you will be amazed when you try this recipe at home because the flavor of this recipe is just mind-blowing. If you're consistent about using Spirulina for the first time, millet may be the one that alters your mind. I recommend you to prepare it with brown rice or quinoa.
- Green Burritos
Spirulina is incredibly unusual as by adding it in this recipe, you can achieve the goal of a flavorful and delicious green burritos recipe. Spirulina delivers these vegan burritos as a boost of the whole protein. Your taste buds will spin around the flavors of edamame, avocado, salsa, walnuts, and spices.
One of the easiest and refreshing ways to utilize Spirulina is to include it to your smoothie. For an instant smoothie, you may utilize this simple technique; mix one cup liquid (like juice, water, or milk), one cup leafy greens, one cup fresh fruit, and one teaspoon Spirulina to a blender. Blend it until you get a smooth texture, and enjoy! Spirulina offers smoothies superpowers.
Are Spirulina supplements safe?
Doctors or medical health providers take to be safe in regular use, particularly under the light of its long history as a food. But Spirulina can be spoiled or contaminated with toxic or harmful metals, disease-causing bacteria, and microcystins (toxins formed from some algae) if developed in an unsafe environment.
Contaminated Spirulina may lead to liver disturbance, restlessness, vomiting, thirst, weakness, sudden heartbeat, shock, and, ultimately, death. Spoiled Spirulina may be particularly harmful to kids. The NIH suggests studying Spirulina's sources in dietary supplements to make sure they are developed in a safe environment and tested for toxins.
Individuals who are suffering from some autoimmune conditions should not use Spirulina supplements, according to the NIH. As it boosts the immune system, its dietary supplements can worsen symptoms of lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus, SLE), multiple sclerosis (MS), rheumatoid arthritis, and other health problems related to overactive immune systems.
For the same reason, it can also weaken the influence of immunosuppressants that are mainly recommended as a treatment for autoimmune conditions and save your body from rejecting organ transplants.
Spirulina can even interfere with medicines that reduce the speed of blood clotting, involving blood thinners like warfarin and also nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAIDS) pain medications. Mixing it with pure herbal dietary supplements that minimize the speed of blood clotting can enhance the person's risk of bleeding. Like herbs involve cloves, garlic, danshen, ginger, ginseng, and turmeric, under NIH's claim.
Females who are pregnant or breastfeeding their kids should not use Spirulina as there is a lack of safety research on this group regarding pregnant or breastfeeding women. Individuals who have a genetic health issue, phenylketonuria, must also avoid it. The reason is that Spirulina may worsen their condition, according to the NIH.
As there are not enough scientific shreds of evidence to develop a safe dose range of Spirulina, so, we recommend you speak to a doctor or medical health provider and follow instructions on all supplements to get rid of unsafe doses.
Possible Side Effects of Spirulina
Although specific harmful impacts are linked to Spirulina's usage, taking it may lead to headaches, allergic reactions, muscle severe pain, restlessness, and sleeping disorder in some cases. Individuals having allergies to seaweed, seafood, and other sea vegetables should not use Spirulina.
If you have a thyroid issue, an autoimmune problem, kidney stones, or are nursing; it may not be adequate for you. You must talk to your doctor or health care provider before consuming it.
It is possible that it is developed in the wild and may absorb harmful toxins from water, like microcystins famous for leading to the severe liver problem), heavy metals and pollution causing agents.
As with all supplements, it is incredibly significant to consult your nutritionist or health care provider before consuming Spirulina to talk about whether it is suitable for you and whether it may be taken in combination with other drugs or dietary supplements you may be using.
Dosage and Preparation
- There is not adequate scientific evidence to offer a suggested dose of Spirulina. Different doses of it have been utilized in research.
- For example, in multiple studies examining Spirulina's advantage for high cholesterol, doses of 2-8 g per day for almost three weeks to 5 months have been utilized.
- For Learning about its influences on hypertension, one recent research administered a dose of 4 g of Spirulina blue-green algae per day for five weeks.
- Another study of type 2 diabetes individuals recommended a product comprising 1 gram of Spirulina twice per day for two months.
Buying Tips for Spirulina
As Spirulina's growing conditions may influence its nutritional taste and quality, it is incredibly essential to do enough research into where specific brand sources its product. It may be as simple as looking up details on a brand's website.
A significant part of the world's Spirulina formation comes from India or China, some of which are sent to the United States. But it tends to have a reduced nutritional profile and influential heavy metal or bacterial contamination. If you are not sure where your Spirulina is coming from, go for a customer service number and ask them.
How to Store Spirulina
Store open bags or bottles of Spirulina powder and tablets in the refrigerator. It doesn't contain any oil that can potentially go rancid by the time, but the absolute quantity of oxygen-sensitive nutrients will destroy the longer it sits after opening. You should use it within a few months of opening to avoid any contamination!
Spirulina has multiple health benefits like it is a famous appetite suppressant and may aid in facilitating the body's digestive system. It also has very potent antioxidant features and may assist in balancing your body's pH, thereby decreasing chronic inflammation throughout your body in a safe and chemical-free way.
The adequate dose of spirulina for you may rely on factors involving your gender, age, and medical history. You should consult your doctor or health care provider to obtain personalized advice.