Today, there are plenty of herbal supplements, diet aids and pills to choose from. It can be difficult to come to a decision, especially if you are a vegetarian, however, have you tried Spirulina yet? Spirulina is a natural source of B12, protein, antioxidants and amino acids.
Would you believe Spirulina is safe to consume while pregnant? There seems to be a debate over whether or not it’s good for the mother-to-be and baby. There’s mixed evidence, therefore, don’t go taking it just yet.
Spirulina’s make-up is not suitable for everyone, although it has many benefits for the mother, including iron supply. In either case, if you make the decision to include Spirulina in your daily regime, choose one that is organic. The one people recommend is Mountain Rose Herbs. Other brands generally are not as pure and can contain additives.
Spirulina is a cyanobacteria or algae plant that grows in the water and often times, it is categorized as an herb, however, it should not be. It is a bacteria which lives due to the fact it produces its own food and breeds off the sun’s energy. Spirulina has received positive reviews in connection with Omega-6, Omega-9 and Omega-3 supplements and gamma linolenic acid or GLA.
Spirulina Health Benefits and Studies
Let’s go over a few of the checkpoints for the health benefits of Spirulina.
- Spirulina bears a high level of chlorophyll, which goes to work for the immune system by removing toxins in the blood and by making the body highly resistant to the flu, the common cold, infections and other airborne diseases. Although Spirulina contains a combination of significant nutrients, chlorophyll is the primary ingredient. By the way, chlorophyll is what gives Spirulina its color. Spirulina works against Anemia. (1, 2)
- If you or someone you know suffer with allergies, suggest Spirulina to them. Ingesting two grams of this algae plant for at least six months or more, will wipe out the signs of those irritating allergies. Even though it is known to boost stamina, it will not improve symptoms of chronic fatigue. Nevertheless, it will maintain or improve blood supply and flow, and as a consequence, preserve cardiovascular utilities.(3, 4)
- Iron is essential during pregnancy and by absorbing Spirulina, the mother and child has a significant supply. Add to that, it’s easy to digest and will not leave you constipated. In fact, it improves the digestive system as it cleanses or detoxifies the body, plus supports the liver and kidneys. A person taking at least 500 mg of Spirulina three times per day for approximately six months, have a greater chance of improving liver function as opposed to the popular supplement milk thistle.
- In addition to owing Omega-3 properties, Spirulina contains plenty of vitamins such as thiamine, riboflavin, nicotinamide, folic acid, vitamins A, C, D, and E. Potassium, copper, iron, phosphorous, sodium and zinc is also found in the Spirulina powder. It’s an excellent calcium source, which provides over 20 times the amount of calcium in milk. It’s an enormous treat for children, aging adults and pregnant women.
- Spirulina’s phosphorus content is something that is irregular to other supplements, however, it’s conducive to getting an “A” on your dental report.
- The chlorophyll or GLA content in Spirulina, studies show, can help to develop and mend tissues as an excellent anti-inflammatory fighter. It’s anti-inflammatory properties are able to relieve joint pain and other forms of inflammation.(5, 6)
- At last, Spirulina suppresses the appetite. As a diet aid, adding this powder and cod liver oil to a veggie shake or smoothie is a marvelous idea. Just add two teaspoons a day to your favorite recipe and enjoy. Or, if you dare and can stand the taste, simply add to a glass of water. During times when you are not feeling well, attempt two or more tablespoons. Cancer patients have used this concoction after radiation treatments. Men who exercise can go for longer periods before tiring by implementing six grams a day for about a month or so.
I know you are waiting to hear the horrible side effects, so let’s discuss them. Spirulina’s blue-green products are pretty much safe for everybody, if it is not plagued with contaminants such as microcystins, toxic metals and bad bacteria. It can cause liver damage, especially in children. At the same time, watch for nausea, vomiting, increased thirst and heartbeat, stomach pain, shock and weakness.
While Spirulina is good for the immune system, it could adversely affect those having an auto-immune disease. People with phenylketonuria or what is commonly known as PKU should speak with their physician before taking Spirulina as it contains the chemical phenylalanine. As a safety measure, anyone making a decision to take Spirulina should talk to their doctor before consuming this or another herbal supplement.
Be aware that not all natural or organic products are good for everybody, therefore, read the package before opening. If you don’t have a doctor, consult the pharmacist behind the counter.