Remember when mom or grandma would tell you “eat your greens, they are good for you”?
Well, they were right! Greens are super right for you.
They are full of healing, life-giving nutrients that cannot be compared to other foods.
Green foods have emerged as the go-to source for boosting immunity, detoxifying and cleansing your internal system, and maintaining overall health and well-being.
There is one green superfood that stands head and shoulders above others and is rated as, perhaps, the single most nutritious food on earth.
When someone says “Spirulina” you may go “Spiro who?”
But spirulina is an ancient blue-green edible alga mainly grown in ponds, rivers, and fresh waters, in parts of Africa and Mexico.(1)
As a superfood, spirulina is very rich in vitamins minerals and other nutrients.
So if you are thinking of going green, eating clean and maintaining a more holistic health regimen, then Spirulina may be the place to start.
This article focuses on:
- Benefits of Spirulina
- How to input it in your daily diet
Benefits of Spirulina:
1. Purifier and Cleanser
Studies show that the chlorophyll found in Spirulina helps detoxify the liver, heart, kidney and digestive system. (2)
When the major organs, like the heart, lungs, liver, and kidneys, are in good working order, we feel healthier.
Numerous studies show that the buildup of toxins in the body is largely responsible for disease and decay.
A strong immune system is the body’s best defense against the likelihood of contracting the major causes of cancer, stroke, heart disease, autoimmune conditions and other illnesses.
A clean immune system will help the body produce antibodies that ward off free radicals, fight viral infections and inhibit cell damage.
2. Builds Endurance and Muscle Mass
Studies show that Spirulina contains all the essential amino acids that form a complete protein.(3) It contains way more protein than animal fats found in beef, poultry, and fish.
Protein is one of the most important foods for the body. It provides energy to fuel the body, is essential for muscle growth, repairs body tissues, and helps restore energy levels in the body.
As a high source of protein, spirulina can help the body recover faster from injury, especially during exercise where muscle tissues tend to tear.
It also provides added energy for strength and endurance throughout the day.
3. Rich in Minerals and Nutrients
It is also a fantastic source of:
- Magnesium, Potassium
- Phosphorous, Manganese
- Magnesium, Vitamins B1, B2, B3, and B12
- Iron, Iodine, calcium, copper, vitamin K
- Omega 3 and 6 essential fatty acids
And a host of other trace minerals and nutrients.
4. Antioxidant Filled
Spirulina is found to be a great source of antioxidants.
Antioxidants help control and eliminate harmful toxins from the body.
Free radicals occur when the body has excess amounts of pollutants, viruses, stress and environmental substances such as smoke and other harmful toxins.
Antioxidants help reduce and combat the presence of free radicals, and they are found mainly in plant foods such as green leafy vegetables, fruits, and of course Spirulina.
Antioxidants have gained popularity in recent years due to extensive research into their effectiveness in fighting disease and improving health.
Antioxidants are essential in:
- Providing a strong defense against heart disease and certain cancers
- Reducing inflammation
- Balancing cholesterol levels
- Anti-bacterial protection
- Improving cellular health
- Eliminating harmful toxins
- Improving immune function
- Reducing free radicals
Free radicals are said to be largely responsible for weakening the immune system.(4)
Spirulina also helps to strengthen the immune system by improving the body’s ability to fight off harmful bacteria and other dangerous substances that can damage cells and cause disease.(5)
5. Keeps you looking and feeling younger
Everybody wants to look and feel younger, especially as we age. Did you know that one teaspoon of Spirulina a day will help keep you looking younger?
The antioxidants in Spirulina help fight the signs of aging, boost your energy levels, and improve your endurance and stamina by reducing tiredness and lethargy.
It can also help lift your mood and promote a greater sense of well-being.
Spirulina is super rich in protein and protein helps boost serotonin and dopamine levels (chemicals that help regulate your mood).(6)
Also Read: 20 Effective Home Remedies to Get Rid of Wrinkles Using Coconut Oil
6. Boosts Brain Power
Another challenge of our modern age is the effect of degenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s’ disease and dementia.(7)
Studies show that we lose brain power as we age.
Memory and cognitive function are important, especially as we age so that we may maintain a level of independence and control over our lives.
Good brain power is important for memory, learning, and concentration.
Spirulina is also shown to contain high levels of amino acids that help improve memory and other cognitive functions in the brain.
It can help increase your focus and improve mental clarity and alertness.
7. Anti Inflammatory
Another major cause of disease and illness is the presence of inflammation in the body.
Inflammation can cause swelling, tingling, and pain in muscles, bones, and joints.
Patients with arthritis, gout, and other muscle aches and pains can suffer greatly.
The antioxidants, fatty acids and phytonutrients in Spirulina can help reduce inflammation promote joint health.
The main ingredient in Spirulina, phycocyanin, is said to be a vital factor in fighting free radicals, slowing the growth of inflammation and protecting the body from cell damage. (8)
Also Read: Top 13 Essential Oils for Inflammation & How to Use Them
8. Weight Management
Spirulina is very dense nutrient and helps expel toxins from the body.
Because Spirulina is extremely rich in protein, this helps maintain lean muscle mass and burns fat in the body.
Spirulina is also shown to suppress appetite, an important factor in weight control.
The fiber in Spirulina can also help reduce the risk of obesity and improve digestion.
Also Read: The Benefits of Honey and Cinnamon for Weight Loss
9. Diabetes Control and Management
Control of Diabetes is a global issue. (9)
Many patients with Adult Onset Diabetes (Type II), struggle to maintain their blood glucose levels on a daily basis.
High blood glucose levels are the main cause of stroke in diabetic patients and increase the likelihood of diabetic coma. (10)
While studies are inconclusive, ongoing research suggests that Spirulina may help regulate blood-sugar levels in diabetic patients.
In one study, selected patients were fed at least 2 grams of spirulina daily for two months.
The results revealed a marked decrease in high glucose and high cholesterol levels in those that were tested.
It also showed that consuming Spirulina can help improve the balance of fat and cholesterol in the body over time.
Spirulina may be good news for allergy sufferers. (11)
Symptoms of allergies, rhinitis, sinusitis, hay fever and asthma, affects work, school attendance and overall performance. (12)
Studies also show that the impact of antihistamine medications disrupts sleep patterns in patients and contributes to fatigue, loss of concentration and learning difficulties, especially in school children.
Spirulina may greatly assist in treating allergy symptoms from pollen, dust, hay fever sneezing, and irritations of the nose and throat.
11. HIV & AIDS Control
HIV & AIDS is a dreaded disease that has claimed the lives of millions worldwide. Recent studies in parts of Africa, Japan and China, are encouraging.
Results show a possible improvement in the symptoms of HIV & AIDS in patients who consumed at least 5 grams of Spirulina daily for at least three months.
12. Regulates Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is one of the most debilitating illnesses of our modern age.
It contributors highly to heart disease, stroke and kidney disease in patients worldwide.
Studies suggest that Spirulina may help improve blood pressure levels because of its effects on nitric oxide levels in the body. (13)
Nitric oxide is an important nutrient that enhances the flow of energy in the cells and blood vessels.
When the blood vessels detect stress (high blood pressure), the body increases nitric oxide levels. This action helps prevent blockage by keeping the blood vessels open and relaxed so that needed nutrients can get to the cells and bloodstream.
Spirulina, therefore, helps in this regard, by reducing blood pressure levels significantly.
13. Prevents Strokes
It is well known that strokes have an exhausting and sometimes fatal impact on our life and health. (14)
Strokes mainly occur in patients who have blocked arteries or disrupted blood vessels that impair the flow of blood to the brain.
Another major contributor to strokes is the high deposit of fatty tissues around the walls of the arteries.
The research was conducted on animals that were fed a high-fat diet and were given Spirulina.
The results showed a reduction in the fat and cholesterol levels in the arteries and blood vessels. (15)
14. Expels Harmful Metals from Body
There is a growing concern about the presence of traces of arsenic in contaminated drinking water in parts of the Far East, Taiwan, and even Central America.
Numerous studies found that almost 50% drastically reduced the incidences of arsenic poisoning in patients who consumed a combination of Spirulina and Zinc for almost three months. (16)
Studies revealed that patients tested expelled major traces of arsenic through their urine. (17)
The positive results of this study also suggest that Spirulina may also help in removing other harmful and potentially dangerous heavy metals from the human system.
15. Combats Candida
For many women around the world who suffer the uncomfortable symptoms of yeast and other fungal infections, this may be good news!
Many people suffer the effects of poor digestion due to high sugar consumption and other poor eating habits.
Improper nutrition can increase the build-up and growth of unhealthy bacteria and yeast in the system.
The presence of harmful bacteria will interfere with the delicate balance of good bacteria in the body and can result in digestive disorders and impaired metabolism.
High levels of fungal and bacterial infections in the system can also lead to autoimmune deficiencies and disorders.
Studies have found that Spirulina may have a positive effect in reducing the presence of Candida and other fungal infections in the body. (18)
Spirulina helped to inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract and stopped the development of Candida in the body.
Spirulina is also said to improve the production of healthy flora in the gut and reproductive organs.
16. Anemia Regulator
If you are constantly feeling run-down, tired and lack energy, chances are you may be anaemic.
Anemia occurs especially in adolescents, nursing mothers and elderly persons, who experience low blood count levels due to:
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding
- puberty and
- the aging process.
Spirulina may also help in improving low blood counts for increased energy and vitality.
While studies are ongoing, the results so far have been positive.
Ways to increase Spirulina in your diet
Spirulina is such a rich source of many nutrients essential for the body, which it is well worth the effort to include it more in the daily diet. (19)
It is recommended that at least 1 to 2 teaspoons daily will give you much more antioxidant benefits than consuming fruits and way more protein than in meat and dairy products. (20)
If you are on a vegan diet, the protein and vitamin B12 in Spirulina may help boost iron levels which you usually get from meat and other animal protein in the diet.
Here are some practical ways you can add Spirulina to your diet:
- Add it to your smoothies and shakes for breakfast and lunch
- Sprinkle it on cereals and smoothie bowls for added nutrition
- Incorporate it in your baking (cookies, muffins, etc.)
- Add it to salad dressings
- Take it as a dietary supplement
- Add in soups, stews, gravies, and sauces
When you look at the countless evidence in support of Spirulina, it may be difficult to find another food source that can match it.
Science suggests that Spirulina may be one of the single most nutritious foods on the planet!
It is an amazing source of essential vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that have been shown to help fight the aging process reduce harmful toxins and improve heart, liver, kidney and brain function.
So make sure you put this simple food into your diet starting today to make a great difference in your life!
Read Next: The Benefits of Honey and Cinnamon for Weight Loss