The name spirulina itself defines its shape- Spiral coil. It is a micro-organism, which is also known as blue green algae and with the scientific name of Arthrospira Plantensis. It is called the “Superfood” due to the most powerful source of nutrition packed in it. It is well grown in sunny climate regions like Greece, Japan, India, United States and Spain. In India, it is grown in Auroville, Pondicherry. It became popular after NASA used it as a dietary supplement for astronauts on space missions. It was also used to treat those affected with radiation sickness in the 1986 chernobyl disaster. It is now available at health food stores as a dietary supplement in different forms.
NUTRITION FACTS/ 100 gm
Energy - 290 Kcals
Protein - 57.47 gm
CHO - 23.9 gm
Fat - 7.72 gm
Cholesterol - 0 mg
Sodium - 1048 mg
Dietary Fiber - 3.6 gm
Sugar - 3.1 gm
Calcium - 120 mg
Iron - 28.5 mg
Potassium - 1363 mg
Vitamin A - 570 IU
Vitamin C - 10.1 mg
Spirulina when fresh, has no taste and smell. But the powder has a very unpleasant taste and smell. It is easily digested. It is low in fat, low in calories, high in protein (70%) and other vitamins, minerals and other essential fatty acids. Bio-availability is much higher in fresh form when compared to the powder.
It is available in the form of:
It helps combat diabetes,cancer, anemia, arthritis, cardiovascular disease by the presence of Gamma Linoleic acid which reduces bad cholesterol.
It stimulates immune systems and increases antiviral activity.
It also promotes release of high energy levels and so, called “the food for future”.
It also possesses radical scavenging and anti-inflammatory properties.
RDA: Recommended daily intake is 5 gms.
Spirulina powder can be added to fruit or vegetable juices, soups, salads, pasta dishes to enhance the nutritional content.
Crunchy is nice to eat as a snack or added as seasonings to your dishes.
It is best absorbed when taken with Vitamin -C rich foods.
It is advised to avoid cooking, as the nutrients get lost.
Aggravates the symptoms of Phenylketonuria.
Should not be consumed when under immunosuppressant medications.
Toxicity and organ damage occurs from prolonged consumption from undependable sources.
People with renal disorders should not consume spirulina, as excess urea cannot be excreted.
People with Hyperthyroidism should avoid spirulina.
Pregnant or Lactating women avoid taking spirulina.