What is spirulina? Spirulina is what nutrition experts call a superfood – a food that packs a powerful punch without adding fat or hundreds of calories. Superfoods are rich sources of nutrients you can use to beef up your already-balanced diet.
Spirulina is a form of blue-green algae found in tropical and subtropical regions. In its natural habitat, spirulina gives the water a dark, blue-green color. What does adding this superfood to your diet do for you? Consider 12 benefits of taking the spirulina challenge.
Protein, Protein and More Protein
It's not just any protein, either. Spirulina offers infection-fighting protein proven to increase antibody production and macrophages, or white blood cells, to fight off invaders.
Jacque Simpore, a researcher for the University of Ouagadougou, did a study to measure how spirulina might affect the malnutrition epidemic in Africa. The study showed that this form of algae contains antioxidants that protect cells against cancer and the effects of aging.
Inhibits Allergic Reactions
A 2005 study demonstrated that spirulina can help allergy sufferers by reducing the symptoms associated with allergic reactions such as runny nose, itchy eyes and skin rashes.
Taking spirulina can add back the nutrients that you lose when dieting. That means more energy to get you through the day.
Author Paul Pitchford reports that spirulina may boost the production of red blood cells when taken with vitamin B12. That makes it a helpful resource for those dealing with anemia, or a low red blood cell count.
A study done by the Department of Aquaculture in Taiwan discovered that spirulina offers a boost to the immune system that might be effective against candida and HIV.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Along with a balanced diet and healthy exercise plan, spirulina may help you manage your blood pressure, lowering it naturally if you suffer from hypertension.
Lowers Cholesterol Too
Spirulina may help you avoid statin drugs that lower blood cholesterol. Statin drugs come with some unpleasant and dangerous side effects such as anemia or an increased risk of cancer.
Detoxifies the Body
The nutrients in spirulina may help to detoxify the body of poisons like mercury, arsenic and cadmium. The algae may also promote the transfer of nutrients across the blood-brain barrier to help fix the damage done by heavy metals and toxic chemicals.
Balances Brain Chemistry
The boost you get from the extra nutrients in the brain may improve your mood, enhance your memory and reduce stress.
Fosters Healthy Skin and Hair
The nutrients in spirulina may improve your skin tone and hair quality, as well. Go from saggy, aging skin to something supple and healthy. Add topical spirulina creams to your beauty routine and enhance skin tone too.
Reduces Your Risk of Stroke
People with comorbid conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes are at high risk of stroke. A study from the Institute of Pharmaceutical Technology reports that just 180 mg/kg of spirulina served as stroke protection for study animals.
How Do You Take Spirulina?
Spirulina is available as a tablet, powder or topical cream. The dosage depends on a number of factors, such as age and overall health. Your doctor or naturalist can determine the right dosage for you.
The standard dose is four to six 500-milligram tablets or the equivalent in powder. You should not take spirulina if you have an autoimmune condition such as lupus, or if you have a seafood allergy. Children should not take spirulina unless instructed to by a physician.
Spirulina is a natural dietary supplement recognized by mainstream medical facilities as beneficial in fighting illness and bolstering your health.