The word Spirulina stands for ‘little spiral’. It is a microscopic blue green algae that first appeared on the planet more than 3.6 billion years ago. Spirulina is a simple vegetable with primitive structure. Since it lacks hard cell walls, any animal (human included) that consumes this plant, is ensured of getting the proteins and other nutrients it contains.
Nutritional Facts of Spirulina
Depending on the growing conditions, spirulina is made up of 60% protein. More importantly, the proteins found in spirulina contain all of the eight essential amino acids, the building blocks of proteins, in appropriate ratios. It also contains 10 out of the dozen non-essential amino acids.
Spirulina supplies a large number of minerals needed for proper metabolism of the body, as well as good health metabolism. It contains calcium, potassium, zinc, magnesium, selenium, manganese, iron, and phosphorus.
Spirulina thrives in waters that are so saturated with minerals deposited by ancient, mountainous soils, in regions where no other plant is able to survive. Spirulina incorporates these minerals into its protein and cell structure. This is why the organisms eating it are better able to absorb these minerals and use them as opposed to consumption of even larger amounts of the same minerals in the inorganic tablet form. Ie, you’re able to absorb more, naturally.
Spirulina also contains vitamins E, B1, B2, B6, B12, as well as folic acid, pantothenic acid and niacin. It also contains these micronutrients:
Health Benefits of Spirulina
Spirulina actively enhances cell regeneration, strengthening the immune system. It makes wounds heal quicker, and can induce shorter recovery after an illness. It also makes catching diseases like colds and flu more difficult. Being a rich source of vitamin A (ten times more than carrots), it helps maintain eye health.
The gamma-linolenic acid in spirulina is a potent anti-inflammatory. It is especially helpful for women, easing PMS symptoms and ounce for ounce, spirulina contains 26 times greater quantities of calcium, than milk, making it ideal for pregnant women.
The chlorophyll in spirulina is one of the best known detoxifying agents, beneficial in cleaning the blood. It binds with heavy metals and radioactive isotopes making it useful for individuals undergoing radioactive therapy.
How to Make a Spirulina and Maca Smoothie
- 1 teaspoon spirulina powder
- 1 teaspoon maca powder
- 1 cup papaya cubes
- ½ cup low fat yoghurt
- Ice as required
You may also like to add honey, lime juice or cinnamon for additional flavor.
Just whack everything in a blender, hit the button and voila – an ice cold maca and spirulina smoothie!