Spirulina Benefits: What Is Spirulina Good For?
Firstly, I guess that some of you don’t actually know what precisely spirulina is.
But you’re about to find out . . .
You see, spirulina is a blue-green microalga that grows in both fresh and saltwater. It’s not just us, humans, that enjoy consuming it — animals like to use it too.
The plant is divided into two species — Arthrospira platensis and Arthrospira maxima. Both types are cultivated and consumed worldwide.
Mainly, they are used as a dietary supplement and sometimes even as whole foods.
Typically, you can find spirulina as tablets, flakes, and powder.
But now that you found out what spirulina actually is — let’s go further and discuss more about its proven benefits.
What Is Spirulina Good For?
Below I’ve listed you the top ten spirulina benefits. This allows you to decide whether to introduce into your diet or not.
1. Spirulina Lowers Blood Pressure
Japanese researchers declare that by consuming spirulina, people suffering from metabolic syndrome get endothelial dysfunction reversed.
Phycocyanin is the main factor that produces this matter. This pigment is found in spirulina, scientists claiming that it has antihypertensive effects too. The direct function of this element is lowering the blood pressure in your body.
This is excellent news for American citizens since high blood pressure is a common issue for them.
You see, metabolic syndrome has quickly become one of the leading causes of preventable diseases nowadays. And that’s because it increases the risk of producing heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.
2. Spirulina Reduces Cholesterol
Alongside chlorella, spirulina lowers cholesterol levels and prevents atherosclerosis.
Looking through a study conducted in 2016, scientists proved that spirulina supplements have a positive impact on blood lipids — the fat cells in the blood.
In this particular research, spirulina significantly reduced total cholesterol and lowered LDL — also known as the “bad” cholesterol. At the same time, the “good” cholesterol, also known as HDL, got increased.
Another study in 2013 shows that just by consuming one gram of spirulina daily, you can reduce your total cholesterol levels after only three months.
3. Spirulina Has Powerful Antioxidants
The most essential function of antioxidants is protecting your cells from damage. That’s why consuming natural antioxidants is so crucial, spirulina being one of them.
The particular antioxidant that makes spirulina unique is Phycocyanin — a pigment that also reduces inflammation in your body.
As a final point of this benefit, spirulina has an ORAC score of over 24,000. This score is regularly used to measure antioxidant levels and concentration in different foods.
4. Spirulina Boosts Energy
When looking through the chemical composition of spirulina, there’s no wonder consuming it makes you a more energic person.
Considering what Dr. Oz says in his study, spirulina and lime enhance your energy performances.
How do they do it?
By unlocking the sugar from your cells.
That’s why he recommends taking 1 teaspoon of spirulina powder with 12 ounces of lime juice combined. After putting them together, he recommends freezing the mixture in ice cube trays. That’s how, when you’ll take the mixture — your body will get, as he likes to describe it, a “wake-up call”.
Another great supplement that boosts your energy is matcha green tea. Read here our full article about matcha’s benefits.
5. Spirulina Has Muscle And Endurance Benefits
If you’re an athlete or a bodybuilder — supplementing with spirulina should be a choice.
You see, spirulina is known for increasing fat burning processes during physical exercises. The high amounts of Phycocyanin reduce oxidation and prevent both muscle fatigue and the inability to gain muscle.
Plus, spirulina helps you with:
- Increased endurance
- Decreased muscle damage from training
- Enhanced muscle strength
6. Spirulina May Be Effective Against Anemia
In other words, spirulina increases the hemoglobin content of red blood cells and improves immune function.
People no longer have to take so many artificial substances for treating anemia. You see, this illness affects older adults, leading to prolonged feelings of vulnerability and weakness.
But when people decided to supplement with spirulina — the symptoms got significantly reduced.
7. Spirulina May Help Those with Allergies
Good news for them!
Having anti-inflammatory properties — spirulina reduces nasal congestion, itching, and sneezing.
And that’s a proven fact.
Eventual Spirulina Side Effects
You’ll wonder . . . is it safe for your kidneys? Or for your liver?
And if not, despite its many benefits, what side effects can spirulina have?
Well, some people started having autoimmune reactions after using the supplement. This happens through the activation of TNF-alpha — an inflammatory agent.
But the conducted case study shows that only people predisposed to autoimmune disease may be affected.
However, other researches suggest that spirulina may be useful in fact in inflammation. More research needs to be done to determine the exact danger of spirulina for those with autoimmune diseases.
If you know you have an autoimmune condition, maybe it’s better to check a doctor before taking this supplement.
Be sure to always buy spirulina from a well-known retailer. The quality of it is very important — since it’s an alga that grows in seas.
You see, contaminated spirulina can cause:
- Liver problems
- Stomach pain
- Rapid heartbeat
- Even death sometimes
More than that, if you’re pregnant — you should avoid consuming it. Statistics show that pregnant women and children may show side effects when consuming spirulina.
How to eat Spirulina
Understanding both the benefits and side effects, let’s dive in and discuss the ways you can eat the supplement …
The first option is — smoothies and juices. This is the best way to eat spirulina powder.
Thankfully, there are many brands of smoothies and juices on the internet from which you can choose. But I like to take my daily dose of spirulina from Organifi Green Juice powder.
The smoothie is very easy to make, and it has an excellent taste too.
Besides spirulina, Organifi also has other green herbs which provide you with lots of proper nutrients. You can read here our full Organifi review article and decide whether you should take this supplement or not.
If you know any other good spirulina powders, feel free to leave a comment below. I’ll be more than glad to try them!
Another great option to eat this alga is Healthy Green Bread.
You probably eat bread every day, so why not choose a healthier option too. Here are some green bread recipes from which you can inspire.
If you love pasta, and also want to take your daily dose of spirulina — I’ve got good news for you. Making a mix of these two is relatively common in some areas. You should try it too!
If you want to eat something more light, making a salad dressing with spirulina can be an option.
Mixing greens with greens. Yummy!
My favorite mix is — 1 avocado, 1 teaspoon of spirulina powder, lemon juice and 1 spoon of olive oil.
But you can try it in any salad!