Spirulina is an algae. Today, it is consumed as a nutritional supplement or super food to increase our intake of vitamins and minerals in a simple and natural way.
Discover it’s incredible properties as well as when and how you should take it to make it more effective in this article.
What is spirulina?
Spirulina is a blue-green algae that can be found in low-salinity, alkaline, warm waters. Its name originates in its curious spiral-shaped structure. However, its scientific name is Arthrospira.
It is one of the most complete and nutritious foods, which NASA demonstrated in 1988 by incorporating spirulina into the diet of astronauts.
The Aztecs also consumed it to increase their strength when they had to tackle important physical tasks. Plus, it’s also an excellent supplement for athletes.
Thanks to its excellent nutritional values, spirulina is very effective for treating all kinds of deficiencies as well as improving some disorders.
Let’s have a look at its composition:
- First of all, it’s one of the best vegetable sources of proteins, which are of high biological value and are highly digestible. It’s about 65 to 70% protein.
- It’s rich in chlorophyll, the green pigment that stands out for its great detoxifying potential.
- Plus, it’s rich in vitamins B, C, D and E.
- It contains minerals such as potassium, selenium, copper, manganese, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc.
- In addition, it contains digestive enzymes.
- It stands out for its antioxidant properties (thanks to natural pigments): chlorophyll, caroteinoids and phycocyanins.
- Finally, seven percent of its content is made up of essential fatty acids.
Spirulina is amazingly beneficial for your health. It:
- Helps weight loss, so it’s recommended in a healthy weight-loss diet. This is due to that fact that it makes us feel fuller, since it activates our metabolism and therefore the burning of fat.
- Encourages healthy bacterial flora and regulates and cleanses the intestines.
- Reduces inflammation.
- Improves joint pain.
- Prevents osteoporosis.
- Prevents and fights anemia without needing to take iron supplements.
- Has great purifying power in that it helps the natural elimination of toxins that accumulate in the body and cause diseases.
- Improves your energy levels while reducing fatigue and stress.
- Improves concentration and memory.
- Aids digestion.
- Strengthens the immune system and accelerates the recovery process during convalescence.
- Its antioxidant properties help to prevent signs of aging and cellular damage caused by free radicals, stress, etc.
- It improves kidney function.
How and when to take it?
How and when to take spirulina depends on what you want to achieve:
- If you want to lose weight: Take spirulina half an hour before each meal with a glass of water. This way, the algae produces a natural satiating effect that helps you eat less without going hungry.
- If you want to gain weight: Take the spirulina right after your meal with your dessert.
- As a specific treatment for a disorder: Take spirulina on an empty stomach, half an hour before eating any food.
- As a nutritional supplement: Put it in green smoothies made with fruits and green leafy vegetables.
We recommend choosing a high-quality spirulina that’s ideally organic to make sure it doesn’t contain harmful components, since algae has a high absorption power.
You can take spirulina powder mixed with water or food or in capsules or tablets.
The usual dose to start taking it is 500 mg – or 1 g – 1 to 3 times a day. However, you can increase this dose gradually, paying attention to how your body reacts (it’s even better if you’re under professional supervision).
It’s important to start with a low amount due to the high diuretic power of this algae, which could cause some side effects which cause some discomfort (headache, intestinal disorders, etc.).
For this reason we also recommend drinking a lot of water during the treatment, at least 6-8 glasses a day, apart from your meals.