Spirulina: A Supper Food

What is it?spirtab500_big

Spirulina is a natural “algae” (cyanbacteria) powder that is incredible high in protein and nutrients. When harvested correctly from non-contaminated ponds and bodies of water, it is one of the most potent nutrient sources available. It is largely made up of protein and essential amino acids, and I typically recommend it to clients who decide to remain vegetarian for its high natural iron content. It is often touted for its high B-12 content, though there is a lot of debate about if this particular form is a complete and absorbable form of B-12 and I don’t recommend it completely in place of animal products.

The high concentration of protein and iron also makes it ideal during pregnancy, after surgery, or anytime the immune system needs a boost.

Composition of Spirulina

Protein about 60% ( 51 to 71 )
Carbohydrate about 14%
Lipids about 6%
Amino Acids
(essentials)
Spirulina
grams
Egg Protein
per 100 grams of
FAO Standard proteins
Isoleucine 6.4 5.8 4.0
Leucine 10.4 9.0< 7.0
Lysine 4.5 6.7 5.5
Methionine 2.2 3.0 5.5*
Phenylalanine 5.4 5.3 6.0
Threonine 5.4 5.3 4.0
Tryptophane 1.5 1.8 1.0
Valine 7.5 7,2 5.0

* includes cystine

Carbohydrates Per 100 grams
Ramnose 9.0
Glucane 1.5
Phosphorolated Cyclitols 2.5
Glucosamine Muramic acid 2.0
Glycogen 0.5
Scialic acid and others 0.5
Lipids (Principal Ones) mg/Kg
Palmitic acid (saturated fatty acid) 16-,500 to 21,141
Linoleic acid (unsaturated FA) 10,920 to 13,784
Gamma linoleic acid (omega 6) 8,750 to 11,970
Alpha linolenic acid (omega 3) 699 to 7,000
Chlorophyll-a 6,100 to 7,600
Beta sitosterol 30 to 97
Beta carotene average 1,700
Vitamins mg/Kg
Biotin 0.4
Cyanocobalmin ( B12 ) 0.45 ( analogs not included )
Delta-calcium Panthothenate 11.0
Folic acid 0.5
Inositol 350
Nicotinic acid ( PP ) 118<
Pyridoxine ( B6 ) 3
Riboflavine ( B2 ) 40
Thiamin ( B1 ) 55
Tocopherol ( E ) 190
Ascorbic acid ( C ) 90

Health Properties:

Though it does taste like pond scum, Spirulina has some great health-boosting qualities:

  • Spirulina is 65% protein and amino acids including the essential fatty acid gamma linolenic acid (GLA) which has gotten a lot of attention for its anti-inflammatory properties, especially when taken with other quality Omega-3 supplements like Fermented Cod Liver Oil. (I suspect that the benefits of GLA in Spirulina are even more than what the studies have found since these studies often use vegetable oils for their GLA source, and the other inflammatory compounds in vegetable oils can interfere with the anti-inflammatory ability.) It contains all essential amino acids.
  • Spirulina contains Omega 3-,6 and 9s and is especially high in Omega-3s.
  • Spirulina is extremely high in Chlorophyll, which helps remove toxins from the blood and boost the immune system.
  • Spirulina has a very high concentration of bio-available iron and is excellent during pregnancy and for those with anemia and will not cause constipation.
  •  Spirulina is a great source of other nutrients including (according to Wikipedia): “Spirulina contains vitamins B-1(thiamine), B-2 (riboflavin), B-3(nicotinamide), B-6 (pyridoxine), B-9 (folic acid), vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin A and vitamin E. It is also a source of potassium, calcium, chromium, copper, iron, magnesium,  manganese, phosphorus,  selenium, sodium and zinc. Spirulina contains many pigments which may be beneficial and bioavailable”.
  • Spirulina was tested and found to have an ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) of over 24,000 which is 4x the ORAC score of blueberries. The ORAC score is generally used to measure antioxidant ability and concentration in different foods.
  • Spirulina is also incredibly high in calcium with over 26 times the calcium in milk, making it excellent for children, the elderly and during pregnancy.
  • Some research has suggested that Spirulina may be helpful in allergies and allergic reactions.
  • Spirulina’s phosphorus content makes it helpful as part of a tooth remineralization regimen.
  • Emerging evidence suggests that it binds with radioactive isotopes and may be useful for radioactivity exposure or radiation therapy.
  • The protein in Spirulina is highly usable and has a net protein utilization rate of between 50-61%
  • Spirulina can bind with heavy metals in the body and help remove them.
  • Spirulina can increase fat burning during exercise.
  • The superfood spirulina is beneficial for everyone- children, athletes, busy adults, pregnant women, the elderly, the sick and the healthy.

Benefits of Spirulina:nutritional value 1gm spirulina

  1. Stimulates immune system to destroy invading disease organisms and carcinogens.
  2. Potentiates the immune system with its anti-tumor, anti-viral and interferon inducing effects.
  3. Helps to sanitize the bowel by detoxifying the colon and promoting the growth of friendly bacteria.
  4. Promotes tissue repair in wounds and burns and has anti-infectious properties.
  5. Decreases cholesterol levels and helps to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.
  6. Works as an anti-inflammatory, helping to reduce the inflammation characteristic of arthritis.
  7. Provides superior nutritional support as one of nature’s whole foods for anyone who is weakened by disease, alcohol or drug abuse.
  8. Helps to balance RNA/DNA (nucleic acids)
  9. Curbs the appetite and helps to stimulate the metabolism.
  10. Works like an antioxidant in detoxifying the body of pollutants.
  11. Cleansing: Spirulina promotes the body’s natural cleansing processes. You feel fitter, more cheerful, and you have more energy.
  12. Restoring: Spirulina compensates for deficiencies in the diet and stimulates the metabolism. Your physical condition improves noticeably and you recover faster after exertion.
  13. Fortifying: Spirulina boosts resistance and activates the body’s natural defence mechanisms. You feel stronger and are better able to cope with the pressures of everyday life.It gives more energy to every living creature and is said to be a cure to allergies, visual problems, carbohydrate disorders, anemia and many other disease conditions.Superfood’ is an apt term since it has five times more calcium than milk, three times more protein than meat, fish or poultry, 50 times more iron than spinach and has no cholesterol. It also contains natural substances that act as a hunger suppressant.

Cancer 
Spirulina  also obtains its color from chlorophyll. According to Alan Keith Tillotson’s “One Earth Herbal Sourcebook,” the high levels of chlorophyll in spirulina may explain its ability to stop cancer colonies from forming. As Tillotson writes, “Foods and herbs that contain high levels of chlorophyll show harmacological evidence of cancer prevention, Spirulina  also obtains its color from chlorophyll. According to Alan Keith Tillotson’s “One Earth Herbal Sourcebook,” the high levels of chlorophyll in spirulina may explain its ability to stop cancer colonies from forming. As Tillotson writes, “Foods and herbs that contain high levels of chlorophyll show pharmacological evidence of cancer prevention.

Sexual Vitality
Another interesting factor is that Spirulina has a relatively high content of arginine which is important for the production of (male) seminal fluid which is about 80% arginine and for keeping the blood clean. Another interesting factor is that Spirulina has a relatively high content of arginine which is important for the production of (male) seminal fluid which is about 80% arginine and for keeping the blood clean.

Vegetable Replacement
Nowadays, our diet is low green leafy vegetables. Lack if Chlorophyllsintake, which can be found abundant in vegetables, may lead to toxic accumulation from our daily activity and life style. Staying and working in the hustle-bustle of the city surrounded by vehicle’s smoke and eating unhelathy food are harmful to our internal health and may lead to poor skin complexion and accelerate the aging process of the skin.As an alternative source of high quality protein and green vegetables –DXN Spirulina is a type of blue-green algae which is full of life-giving nutrients such as protein, beta carotene, chlorophyll, vitamin B complex, minerals, essential fatty acids and other important nutrients that our body needs.NASA have done a lot of researches on spirulina and have proved to make spirulina as the best form of food for astronauts because of its ingredients. Spirulina  is  virtually the only vegetarian source of vitamin B12, which is (needed for healthy red blood cells; and contains significant amounts of iron, protein (60 to 70 percent), essential amino acids, the nucleic acids RNA and DNA, and chlorophyll.Spirulina is a potent antioxidant and body detoxifier

Reduces blood cholesterol levels
Spirulina is a naturally digestible food that helps to protect the immune system, reduce blood cholesterol levels, and boost the absorption of necessary minerals.

Maintains Peak  Brain/cognitive function
“Boosting intake of folic acid and vitamin B-12 through nutritional supplements is a very effective and important way to maintain peakbrain function.” Holistic nutritionist Mike Adams, author of “The Seven Laws of Nutrition

The study, conducted by the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, found that among seniors with adequate vitamin B-12 levels, high levels of blood folate were associated with better cognitive function.

Helps with Depression
Folic acid is important during the aging process because it provides nourishment for the brain. Folic acid supports the production of energy and the production of blood cells. Supplementing with folic acid may help in the treatment of depression.

Curbs appetite/cleanses
Taking spirulina in supplement form is beneficial while fasting, as it supplies the nutrients needed to cleanse and heal, while also curbing the appetite. If you havehypoglycemia (low blood sugar), you may benefit from using this food supplement.

Reduce weight in a natural way
Spirulina’s pure protein, which arrives within the context of massive amounts of beta-carotene, chlorophyll, fatty-acid GLA, and other nutrients, is especially helpful to those who are overweight, diabetic, hypoglycemic, or suffering from cancer,arthritis, or other degenerative diseases. (Herbal Medicine Healing Cancer by Donald R Yance Jr, page 164)

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Spirulina restores the body to a state of high energy according to those who use it. The process may be through its high levels of polysaccharides and essential fatty acids.

In Healing with Whole Foods, Paul Pitchford writes, “The special form of protein in spirulina benefits those with problems resulting from excessive animal protein, which does not assimilate well and further burdens the body with waste products.” If you already have cancer, making a few diet modifications, such as adding spirulinaand restricting meat and cheese, can make all the difference in your recovery, according to Patrick Quillin’s Beating Cancer with Nutrition and Joseph B. Marion’sAnti-Aging Manual. This difference can be the deciding factor between life and death.

Spirulina is rich in phycocyanin, a pigment with anti-cancer properties. Spirulina is also the highest plant source of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), a fatty acid which strengthens immunity and inhibits excessive cell division. (Healing With Whole Foods by Paul Pitchford, page 378)

Several animal studies have documented the ability of spirulina to arrest the development of cancer progression, reduce risk of cancer initiation, and boost the immune system.

Spirulina has anti-viral and anti-allergic effects, and is a natural antihistamine.
The high content of protein and its high digestibility as well as all the other vitamins, minerals and enzymes make Spirulina a super food to improve sexual vigour.

Eye Disease- Loss of Vision, Cataracts and Glaucoma
A clinical report by Yoshito Yamazaki, MD, lecturer at Tokyo College of Medicine and Dentistry clearly shows the benefits of  spirulina for eye diseases. In the Japanese research with Spirulina and other aiding measures confirmed it to be highly effective in 90% of geriatric cataracts out of a total of 480 cases. The treatment included eye-disease related diseases such as geriatric cataracts, diabetic retinal damage (retinitis), nephritic retinal damage, high blood pressure and hardening of retinal blood vessels (angiosclerosis) (Hills).

Hepatitis and Cirrhosis
It has been shown in many clinical reports in Japan that Spirulina has a preventative as well as a corrective power for fatty liver and hepato-cirrhosis. After only one month of Spirulina intake a positive effect was obvious. After three months a change to the normal condition was reported.

Gastric and Duodenal Ulcers
The amino acids, cystein and high content of high quality protein makes Spirulina a very good treatment for ulcers. Spirulina with its richness in chlorophyll also makes it valuable for retaining and restoring a good digestion.

Anti-aging
Spirulina is rich in three substances known to have an anti-ageing effect. Tyrosine, Vitamin E or Tocopherol and Selenium. For example, Tyrosine may slow the ageing of cells and suppresses hunger.

Essential Nutrients and functions of spirulina:

DXN Spirulina is a type of blue-green algae which is full of life-giving nutrients such as protein, beta carotene, chlorophyll, vitamin B complex, minerals, essential fatty acids and other important nutrients that our body needs.859280_f520

  • Green Element (Chlorophlylls) – aids the elimination of toxin and gently cleans blood waste.
  • Good Quality Protein- spirulina has an impressive 60%- 70% protein content.By comparison, spirulina pr
    oduces twenty times more protein per acre versus soy beans.
  • Essential Fatty Acids – rich in gamma-linolenic acid(GLA)- aids in the health of the joints and heart. It is also helpful for specific issues like weight loss and premenstrual syndorme (PMS).
  • Vitamins – vitamins A, C, E and B-complex vitamins,including vitamins B12 and B6.
  • Various minerals – contains potassium, calcium, chromium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, selenium, sodium and zinc.
  • Color pigments-chlorophyll.-phycocyanin – unique blue-green colour may help improve immune system and it has anti-cancer properties.-Beta carotene – spirulina’s beta carotene is ten times more concentrated than carrots. It helps to support your body’s antioxidant defenses and is good for healthy eyes and vision.It is different from other algae because it is easily digested and absorbed by the body. It is also known as one of the best alkaline food, which helps to change weak acidic body condition to a healthy alkaline one.

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