Spirulina: 4 Health Benefits

shutterstock 1768382069
shutterstock 1768382069

Spirulina may look nasty, but don’t knock it till you’ve tried it. While we are careful to label a food as a superfood, spirulina, with a dense nutritional profile, certainly fits the bill! Largely available in tablet or powdered forms, here are 6 surprising health benefits that spirulina brings to the table.

Packed with nutrients

Spirulina is full of nutrients. It has high amounts of calcium, niacin, potassium, magnesium, B vitamins and iron, which aren’t found is most daily vitamins! As such, it’s a great way to hit your daily nutritional requirements. Boasting a 60% protein content, spirulina is also a great alternative source of protein for those who are on plant-based diets!

Filled with antioxidants

Antioxidants are produced by the body, and are necessary to combat oxidative stress. Too much oxidative stress results in damage to your cells. This in turn makes you more susceptible to diseases, as well as premature ageing of the brain. It contains a phytonutrient known as c-phycocyanin, which also gives its characteristic deep green colour. This phytonutrient is known to be rich in antioxidants, which is essential in reducing oxidative stress. While brain ageing is inevitable, it may also help delay the process.

Allergic Rhinitis Relief

Those with sensitive and congested noses, rejoice! When ingested, spirulina has been shown to reduce symptoms of allergic rhinitis such as nasal discharge, sneezing, nasal congestion and itching. As such, it’s a great alternative to over-the-counter drugs, and may perhaps be even more beneficial for allergies when taken in the long run, too!

Managing Cholesterol

A certain amount of cholesterol is needed to maintain a healthy body. However, too much cholesterol is a risk factor for heart disease! Great news here — spirulina has been shown to reduce ‘bad’ LDL cholesterol. LDL cholesterol is responsible fatty deposits along the arteries, which in turn restricts blood flow. At the same time, it also increases the ‘good’ HDL cholesterol. In contrast, HDL cholesterol carries other cholesterol to the liver to be deposited, cleansing your blood stream.

The health benefits of spirulina are still being researched. Nonetheless, it is, gram for gram, one of the world’s most nutritious foods. There have been no proven negative effects to ingesting this algae. Rather, spirulina brings many benefits to the table, and may improve your overall health. If you choose to incorporate it into your diet, remember not to exceed the recommended daily doses!

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