Are you looking for a completely natural supplement that increases your energy, supports fat loss and helps detoxification of heavy metals like lead and mercury from your body? If so, a freshwater algae, chlorella, can be exactly what you need.
Native to Taiwan and Japan, this superfood is rich in phytonutrients, including amino acids, chlorophyll, beta-carotene, potassium, phosphorus, biotin, magnesium and the B-complex vitamins. Chlorella & # 39; s rich green color comes from a high concentration of chlorophyll and chlorella is full of it chlorophyll benefits.
We are all told to eat more leafy green vegetables for good health, but sometimes it can be difficult to get the 5-7 servings of vegetables per day that are recommended by nutritionists and functional medicine doctors. Although juice is another option, it is just too time-consuming for most people. Meanwhile, most green leafy vegetables are frankly pale compared to the health benefits that chlorella can offer.
By organic consumption, extracted at low temperature chlorella supplements, you can receive all chlorella benefits in a simple powder or tablet form.
What is Chlorella? What does it do?
Chlorella is a genus of green algae (family Chlorellaceae), either found alone or clustered in fresh or salt water. The entire chlorella plant is used to make nutritional supplements and medicines. There are different types of chlorella with Chlorella vulgaris as one of the most used in supplements. Chlorella algae is a cousin of spirulina, and we will compare the nutrients of these superfoods later in the article.
What does chlorella do for your body? Studies have shown that chlorella benefits the whole body by supporting healthy hormonal function, promoting cardiovascular health, helping to ignore the effects of chemotherapy and radiation, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol and helping to detoxify our body .
Chlorella has also been used to attempt to treat or prevent the following: (1)
- Asthma attacks
- Bad breath
- High cholesterol
- High bloodpressure
- Low B-12 levels
- Premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
- Trichomoniasis (a sexually transmitted disease)
- White spots on genitals called vulvar leukoplakia
Some people also take chlorella to try:
- Boost energy levels
- Detoxifies the body
- Improve the mental function
7 Chlorella benefits
As you can see, people use chlorella for many different health problems. Here are seven scientifically proven chlorella benefits that you can expect by including this superfood in your daily diet.
1. Detoxes heavy metals
If you have mercury fillings in your teeth, are vaccinated, regularly eat fish, exposed to radiation or consume food from China, you may have heavy metals lurking in your body. It is important for your overall health and well-being to be proactive in detoxing heavy metals and toxins.
One of the most important health benefits of chlorella is that it wraps itself around persistent toxins in our body, such as lead, cadmium, mercury and uranium, and prevents them from being re-absorbed. Regular consumption of chlorella can even help prevent heavy metals from accumulating in the soft tissues and organs of our body. (2, 3)
2. Detox Radiation and Chemotherapy
Radiation therapy and chemotherapy are the most common forms of cancer treatment nowadays. Anyone who has undergone one of these treatments, or knows someone who has, knows what a toll they take on the body. Chlorella & # 39; s high chlorophyll content has been shown to protect the body against treatments with ultraviolet radiation while removing radioactive particles from the body.
According to researchers from Virginia Commonwealth University Medical College,
Cellular components and functions of the immune system remain at or near normal levels and are less adversely affected when patients undergo chemotherapy and / or use immunosuppressive drugs such as steroids.
The two-year study by the university enabled researchers to observe that glioma-positive patients have fewer respiratory tract infections and flu-like illnesses when using chlorella. (4)
3. Supports your immune system
Research published in 2012 in the Nutrition Journal It was found that after 8 weeks of taking chlorella the activity of NK cells improved. Researchers at Yonsei University in Seoul, Korea, studied healthy individuals and their immune system response to chlorella supplements.
The results showed that chlorella a healthy immune system response and helps the "natural killer" activity (5)
4. Promotes weight loss
Losing weight is difficult, especially as we get older. Published in a study in the Journal of Medicinal Food, researchers explain, "Chlorella intake resulted in noticeable reductions in body fat percentage, serum total cholesterol, and fasting blood glucose levels." (6)
Chlorella has benefits for you because it helps regulate hormones, helps with metabolism, improves blood circulation and promotes higher levels of energy. It also helps to reduce weight and body fat and removes stored toxins.
As our bodies fall off, toxins are released and can be taken up again. It is important to flush these toxins out of our system as quickly as possible. The ability of Chlorella to surround the toxins and heavy metals in our body helps facilitate elimination and prevent reabsorption.
5. You look younger
Are there any chlorella benefits for the skin? They are certainly there! Research continues to show that chlorella can also delay the aging process, making you look younger. A study published in the journal Clinical laboratory revealed that chlorella greatly reduces oxidative stress, which can be caused by pollution, stress and a poor diet. (7)
The reason that chlorella is so effective at giving you younger looking skin is because it naturally increases the amount vitamin A, vitamin C and glutathione in your body, which eliminates free radicals and protects your cells.
By taking just one teaspoon or a few capsules per day of a chlorella supplement, you may see results after just two weeks.
6. Fight cancer
It is believed that all human bodies ever develop cancer cells. Properly functioning immune systems have the ability to attack and destroy these cells before they have the chance to hold on and create cancer. A recent medical study found that chlorella helps fight cancer in various ways. (8)
First, when taken preventively, it strengthens the immune system so that our bodies respond correctly. Secondly, because it removes heavy metals and toxins from our body, we have less chance of cancer based on the environment. Thirdly, studies have shown that chlorella, once diagnosed with cancer, improves the functioning of T cells to combat new abnormal cells.
And, as mentioned above, if cancer is diagnosed and chemotherapy or radiation therapy is used, chlorella can help to combat side effects and be used in addition to natural cancer treatments.
7. Lowers your blood sugar and cholesterol
Type 2 diabetes and high cholesterol are two of the serious chronic conditions that many Americans face today. Years of improper eating, stress and lack of sleep have led many to one or both of these diagnoses.
In a study the Journal of Medicinal Food, researchers discovered that doses of 8,000 mg of chlorella per day (divided into 2 doses) lower cholesterol and blood glucose levels.
Researchers first saw a fall in cholesterol levels and then an improvement in blood glucose. They believe that chlorella activates a number of genes at cell level that improve insulin sensitivity and promote healthy balance. (9, 10)
Related: 6 Phytoplankton Health benefits that you won't believe (# 1 is uplifting!)
Chlorella Nutrition Facts
As you will see, chlorella is one of the most nutritious superfoods in the world.
Three tablets of chlorella contain approximately: (11, 12)
- 10 calories
- 2 grams of protein
- 0 grams of fat
- 1 gram of carbohydrates
- 0 milligrams of sodium
- 78 milligrams vitamin C (87 percent DV)
- 3000 international units of vitamin A (60 percent DV)
- 6.3 milligrams of iron (35 percent DV)
Chlorella food also contains a good amount of vitamin K, vitamin B1, vitamin B6 and phosphorus.
If you look at it nutrient density score, it's easy to see why chlorella is among the top 10 healthy foods in the world. It is even more nutrient per gram than other vegetables, including kale, spinach and broccoli!
Chlorella used in traditional medicine
With its impressive mix of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytonutrients, chlorella is used as a supplement and remedy by many practitioners of traditional medicine. With its high chlorophyll content, it is often used for inflammatory disorders, as well as its detoxifying and innovative benefits.
In Traditional Chinese MedicineChlorella provides yin energy. This means that it is very useful for an over-stimulated or unbalanced body. It can have a calming effect on the nervous system while nourishing and restoring the body as a whole.
In Ayurvedic medicine, chlorella (as well ghee) is supposed to supply ojas ("vitality" or "life force") to people who feel expired or who can give an extra boost to their already positive health status. (13)
Chlorella versus Spirulina versus Chlorophyll
Is chlorella or spirulina better? Although most Americans may have never heard of chlorella, many people have been using spirulina for years. They are both waterborne organisms, but they differ a lot at the cellular level.
Spirulina is a spiral-shaped, multi-cell plant with no real core. It is blue green in color and can grow up to 100 times the size of chlorella. Chlorella is similar to a spherical single-cell micro-organism with a core and is solid green.
Chlorophyll is the green pigment that occurs in both spirulina, chlorella and all green plants. Although chlorophyll is completely natural, a similar semi-synthetic mixture called chlorophyllin is made in laboratories to be used in supplements such as those marketed as & # 39; liquid chlorophyll & # 39 ;. Green algae such as chlorella are often used to make chlorophyllin.
Spirulina can be used in supplements and consumed immediately after harvesting, but chlorella must be processed to break its cell walls in order to be able to absorb its benefits by users. Chlorophyll comes, as I just said, from green plants and algae. Chlorella is said to contain more chlorophyll (maybe even double!) Than spirulina, while spirulina usually contains more proteins, iron, proteins and gamma-linolenic acid (GLA).
The benefits of chlorella and spirulina are very similar, because both have a concentrated balance of nutrients that help the body cleanse and detox, and a high concentration of proteins that support energy and clarity. The known benefits of chlorophyll from liver detoxification, skin protection and improved digestion are very similar, which is not surprising, since chlorophyll is a star ingredient of both spirulina and chlorella and is behind many of the benefits.
Chlorella and spirulina foods both contain extra nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin A, B vitamins and more that are not in chlorophyll supplements. Spirulina has even been used in the World Health Organization & # 39; s nutrition programs for malnourished children in non-developed countries. A single dose of spirulina powder per day can prevent a vitamin A deficiency that can lead to blindness.
Chlorophyll, spirulina and chlorella supplements are all available in powder, tablet or liquid form. Depending on your health goals and which other supplements you use, one of these supplements may appeal to you more than the other. Chlorella and spirulina are both algae that contain chlorophyll and provide extra nutrients. Chlorophyll supplements are a concentrated way to specifically address the benefits of chlorophyll.
Where to find and how to choose Chlorella
You can purchase chlorella in powder, tablet or liquid form at your local health store or online. Chlorella & # 39; s hard outer cell walls are hard to digest. It took many years of research, study, testing, and error to find a way that the human body could effectively digest it. The substance in these walls is believed to be what surrounds heavy metals, pesticides and other toxins and helps remove them from the human body.
What is the best chlorella? When purchasing a chlorella supplement, make sure you purchase "cracked cell wall chlorella" because they are fully absorbable. You also want to search for a brand that is organic and is extracted at a low temperature. Chlorella reviews can be helpful to help you choose the best brand.
Chlorella supplements, dosage & how to take
When taking a chlorella supplement there are two ways to consume it:
1. Smoothie – Chlorella has a very strong taste, so you don't want to add more than about 1/2 teaspoon of chlorella to a smoothie. You can use other ingredients such as banana, coconut water, vanilla protein powder and lime juice to hide the taste.
2. Tablets – Simply take 3-6 tablets of chlorella with 8 ounces of water 1-3 times a day to experience the health benefits of chlorella.
In addition, the following dosage has been investigated in scientific research: (14)
- For iron deficiency during pregnancy: 2 grams of chlorella taken 3 times a day from the 12 to 18th week of pregnancy until delivery.
Studies suggest that chlorella is safe when taken orally for a short time, up to two months. (1)
Looking for some more interesting and delicious ways to include chlorella in your diet? View these great chlorella recipes full of nutrients and taste:
History and interesting facts
Chlorella was discovered in 1890 by the Dutch microbiologist Dr. Beijerinck with the help of a microscope. Chlorella, however, has been in existence for billions of years since the inception of planet Earth. There are more than 20 types of chlorella included C. vulgaris, C. ellipsoidea, C. saccharophila, C. pyrenoidosa and C. regularis.
The name & # 39; chlorella & # 39; is derived from the Greek word & # 39; chloros & # 39 ;, which means green and the Latin diminutive suffix & # 39; ella & # 39 ;, which means small. In the wild, chlorella can reproduce rapidly through the process known as photosynthesis. All it needs to grow and multiply is water, sunlight, carbon dioxide and a small amount of minerals.
In the 1960s, scientists realized that it was totally impossible for humans to digest chlorella in its natural state because of the hard cell walls that encapsulate its beneficial nutrients. This is again the reason why you see chlorella supplements that are labeled as "cracked cell wall chlorella."
Chlorella side effects and precautions
Chlorella powder and other chlorella supplements can cause side effects in some individuals. What are the side effects of taking chlorella? Some of the side effects of chlorella include:
- swelling of the face or tongue sensitivity to sunlight
- digestive problems
Most of these side effects and symptoms of chlorella are typical of any detoxification program.
Chlorella can also be green in color stool. Other chlorella hazards are possible allergic reactions. Seek emergency medical attention if you experience severe respiratory problems or a life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis after using chlorella.
Chlorella supplements often contain iodine, so people who are allergic to iodine or watch their iodine intake should be careful. People who are being treated for a medical condition or are currently taking medication should contact their doctor before taking chlorella. Chlorella is known to interact with immunosuppressants and blood thinners such as warfarin (Coumadin). (14)
Experts have different opinions about the safety of these algae during pregnancy, so pregnant and lactating women should talk to their healthcare provider before taking chlorella supplements.
- Chlorella is a green alga that is rich in chlorophyll, just like its cousin spirulina.
- The benefits of Chlorella are numerous, including heavy metal detoxification and conventional cancer treatments, boosting the immune system and skin health, helping with weight loss, lowering blood sugar and cholesterol levels and fighting cancer.
- It is also often used as a natural remedy for stimulating energy and mental functions.
- When comparing chlorella versus spirulina versus chlorophyll, the winner can really be a matter of personal preference; they are all absolutely affordable and in many similar ways.
- Chlorella powder and spirulina powder can both be easily added to any smoothie recipe. They can also be used in soups, desserts and more!
Read the following: home-made Detox drinks – 5 important health benefits, including weight loss
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