What is Spirulina?
Spirulina is a nutrient powerhouse that came to fame in the 60’s when it was used for NASA astronauts during space travel. Earlier than this, during WW1 the Japanese began researching it’s potential as a food during food shortages. Fast forward to today and algae is grabbing worldwide attention again as a nutrient rich food that’s plant-based and sustainable – great for both human and environmental health.
The earliest history of Spirulina goes back to the 1500’s when Aztecs used it as a food for endurance, but it’s likely these microalgae probably existed well before humans did.
Although at first glance it looks dark green, Spirulina is known as a blue-green algae. Its colour is from two special constituents - chlorophyll and phycocyanin. Chlorophyll gives all green plants their colour and is used to capture sunlight for growth and energy. Phycocyanin is deep blue in colour and is a protein and antioxidant unique to Spirulina.
Who's Spirulina best suited for?
Spirulina is excellent for everyone, whether you're an athlete looking for a nutritious boost, or you're always on the go, here are some of the ways people are using it to support their health and wellbeing:
- Keto diet - low in carbohydrates & high in easily absorbed protein
- Older people – seniors wanting energy support and healthy bones
- Post ills and chills recovery – to help support healthy energy, immune health, and support vitamin, mineral and antioxidant stores
- Children – for picky eaters, immune support and frequent ills and chills
- Busy working parents - supporting energy on long days
- Stressed people - helps to supply nutrients used up quickly in stressed states
- People trying to cut down on coffee and high-sugar foods
- People who eat less than 7-10 servings fruit and veggies a day
- Athletes and fitness – for extra protein and energy pre and post workouts
- People with poor digestion or reduced stomach capacity (e.g. after gastric surgery)
- People looking to support long-term energy
Spirulina: your superfood for energy and vitality
Spirulina is a well-known superfood because it’s extremely nutrient dense. It’s a rich source of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytochemicals. Spirulina cell walls contain less cellulose than other plants, so it’s easier for humans to digest, making for swift break-down and absorption in the digestive tract. You don’t need to take much, and a little goes a long way. For energy and vitality support, these microalgae pack a good punch.
Here’s why.... Spirulina contains a lot of protein compared to other plants. While the actual amount varies according to cultivation processes, the number lies between 60% - 70% protein per serve.
Protein is made up of amino acids and Spirulina contains at least 18 amino acids including all nine essential amino acids, and because it contains all nine this makes it a complete protein source. The great thing about Spirulina is that it comes in 2nd place to eggs for the highest amount of usable protein at approximately 40% compared to chicken, beef and fish which contains approximately less than 20% usable protein.
For a high concentration of natural vitamins and minerals in one place Spirulina is second to none. With stress being a big factor in our daily lives, it’s a great go-to with nutrients like the B vitamin family, magnesium, and calcium that we know support a stressed body and nervous system. Essential fatty acids like GLA (gamma linolenic acid) and LA (Linoleic acid) help with healthy cholesterol levels and heart function. Minerals like iron, zinc, selenium, copper and boron support healthy bones as well as, muscle, heart and brain function, they also play an important role in our natural detoxification processes.
Despite the presence of healthy essential fatty acids, Spirulina is low in overall fat making it a great addition for anyone on a keto, fasting or a restricted eating plan.
You’ll also find plenty of antioxidants in Spirulina, some we’ve already mentioned (like zinc and selenium), these include carotenoids (beta-carotene), Vitamin E, superoxide dismutase (SOD), phycocyanin, zeaxanthin, and lutein. Antioxidants help to protect cells from damage due to things like ills, stress, toxins, high-fat-high-calorie diets, and not enough fruit and veggies. The protective effect of antioxidants helps to combat premature signs of aging for everyone and the older we get the more support we need. What’s not to love?
Choosing the best Spirulina for you
Lifestream has been selling Spirulina for over 40 years, and they’ve never looked back. Spirulina was 1 of 2 products, (the other was their Aloe Vera Tonic) they started with and they’re still the two most popular products today. 40 years later they have a few Spirulina options to choose from so let's break it down...
Spirulina Certified Organic is grown in an isolated area in India, (in mineral rich filtered fresh water) to avoid environmental and agricultural toxin exposure, in sunlight to ensure high nutrient concentration. Like all their products it goes through testing at various stages to achieve a very high standard of purity. It also meets US, EU and NZ certified organic specifications.
|Shop Spirulina Certified Organic Tablets →||Shop Spirulina Certified Organic Powder →|
Spirulina Bioactive is grown using the same methods of cultivation and harvesting as the Certified Organic Spirulina in an isolated area in the Californian desert. While it isn’t formerly certified Organic, its purity is still considered to be of a premium standard -contaminant and -strict heavy metals testing verifies this. Nutrient values between Spirulina Bioactive and Spirulina Certified Organic only vary slightly which is expected as they’re grown in different locations to each other.
|Shop Spirulina Bioactive Tablets →||Shop Spirulina Bioactive Powder →|
Spirulina Blue Extra was made for people that loved taking Spirulina but wanted an extra boost without having to take a bigger dose. It contains certified organic Spirulina and an extra 23% phycocyanin to support healthy energy production. That means it has all the benefits of Spirulina per serve but with up to 50% more phycocyanin than other Spirulina. When you’re taking more phycocyanin you’re also getting more antioxidant power with the same degree of bioavailability for easy assimilation.
Spirulina Blue Extra is the perfect addition for busy people with hectic lives, stressed and tired people, those recovering from ills and chills and anyone wanting to support exercise performance and recovery.
Ready to give Spirulina a go?