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What is Spirulina and Do You Need it?

Spirulina is a popular dietary supplement that has been used for ages all around the world. It is believed to be one of the most nutrient dense foods on the planet. It has a wide variety of benefits ranging from digestive health to heart health. Widely used in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Spirulina is available at many health food store, herbal shops, and online. Read on to learn more about what Spirulina is and some of its amazing benefits.

What is Spirulina?

There is nothing terribly fancy about Spirulina. Simply put, it is blue-green algae that grows in lakes, ponds, and even in salt water. It can be purchased in powder form or as capsules.

So What’s The Fuss All About?

Well, just because it’s simple algae, doesn’t mean it’s without amazing benefits! The list of health benefits of spirulina is quite extensive, but here are some of the highlights:

*High in Many Nutrients: Spirulina is a loaded with micronutrients. It contains many B complex vitamins including Niacin and B6. It is also a source of iron, copper, and beta-carotene. It also has some trace minerals like manganese as well as the electrolytes, magnesium and potassium.

*Anti-Inflammatory and Antioxidant Properties: Thanks to the protein compound Phycocyanin, Spirulina works as a powerful antioxidant. It scavenges the body of damage-causing free radicals. Since it is able to inhibit the release of histamines, it also does its part as an anti-inflammatory. This makes spirulina a great choice for pain relief and improved mobility.

*Lowers Heat Disease Risk: Low-density lipoproteins, or LDL, are often referred to as the “bad” cholesterol. This is the opposite of high-density lipoproteins, or HDL, which are known to be the “good” cholesterol. Studies have shown that a benefit of spirulina is its ability to lower LDL. It was also shown to lower triglycerides. This leads to lowering total cholesterol which is widely know as a risk factor in the development of heart disease.

*May Lower Blood Pressure: Spirulina may be able to reduce hypertension also known as high blood pressure. Though more studies are needed, researchers found lowered blood pressure in hypertensive rats supplemented with spirulina. Just like with cholesterol, hypertension is also a risk for heart disease.

*Improves Symptoms of Colds and Allergies: Researchers at the University of California at Davis were able to show how spirulina could help those suffering from colds and allergies. Their research demonstrated that spirulina may suppress cell differentiation that is known to cause sinus swelling.

How to use it:

Spirulina comes in many preparations, so there are plenty of ways to add it to your day. It comes in a powder form which you can blend into drinks and smoothies. It can also be purchased in juice form. It is also widely available in tablet or pill form. When buying spirulina, make sure to review the label to be confirm that no fillers have been added to the product.


An official recommended daily allowance has not been set for spirulina. There are recommendations suggesting you aim to ingest anywhere from four to eight grams each day. Of course, this amount may vary. Consider consulting an herbalist before adding spirulina to your diet to understand what dose may work best for you.

Spirulina is not a new, trendy supplement. It has been used around the world for many years. Now that you are more well-informed about its uses, consider consulting an herbalist about adding spirulina to your diet.

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Dr. Candice Seti


California-licensed Clinical Psychologist, Certified Nutrition Coach, and Certified Personal Trainer

Dr. Candice Seti

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