Spirulina is a type of cyanobacterium taken as dietary supplements to improve health. This nutrient is found in algae and is incredibly rich in essential vitamins and minerals as well as antioxidants and protein. Spirulina is harvested in all bodies of water. It’s often processed in powder, tablet or flake form. Wondering what the nutritional and health benefits of spirulina are? Check out our list below:
Improves Brain Function
The natural compounds in Spirulina promote better brain health and function. In a study published in the Journal of Experimental Neurology, researchers found that spirulina helps reduce brain damage in rats that suffered a stroke. An 180 milligrams per kilo dose of spirulina minimized the neurologic deficits and histological changes in lab mice. However, spirulina’s effects on the human brain haven’t been tested nor confirmed.
Spirulina stops the production of histamines in the body. Histamines are compounds that trigger allergy symptoms including watery eyes, runny or itchy nose and swelling. A six-month long study that involved 150 participants found that consuming two grams of spirulina each day helps minimize nasal discharge when compared to those who took a placebo. The findings were published in the Nutrition 411 website.
Prevents Liver Disorders
Spirulina can also minimize the damage caused by liver disease to affected organs. Several studies found that giving patients who suffer from chronic hepatitis a dose of spirulina reduced damage and cirrhosis in the liver. At least three patients who were fed 4.5 grams of spirulina every day for three months showed significant improvement in liver function. In a separate study, lab mice given a dose of spirulina helped protect the rodents’ liver from damage.
Spirulina is known for its powerful anti-inflammatory properties. Its effects become even more enhanced when paired with omega-3 supplements. Spirulina contains essential fatty acid gamma linolenic acid (GLA). This nutrient minimizes infections and inflammations. In fact, spirulina is one of the few foods that contains all-natural GLA. This makes spirulina a great supplement for those suffering from inflammatory disorders like arthritis, gout, etc.
Did you know spirulina is also a great source of bio-available iron? Usually, certain nutrients – like vitamin C – is needed to boost iron absorption. But the iron in spirulina is easily absorbed by the body without assistance from other nutrients. This makes spirulina a great dietary supplement for expectant mothers or those suffering from anemia.
High in Essential Nutrients
Apart from bio-available iron, spirulina is also loaded with B-vitamins, as well as vitamin A, C and E. It’s also a rich source of calcium, potassium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and selenium. It also contains a concentrated level of plant pigment chlorophyll.
Keeps the Bones Strong
Spirulina has more than 26 times more calcium than milk. This makes spirulina a great dietary supplement for developing children and aging individuals. Pregnant women will also benefit from spirulina’s incredible calcium content. During pregnancy, a woman’s calcium level drops down because the fetus is competing for this mineral. By boosting the calcium level in the body, both mother and fetus will absorb the RDA of this mineral.