Wednesday, January 8, 2014

31 Days of Green: Day 7 & 8 Spirulina and Chlorella

Sorry about missing yesterdays post. I’m doubling up today to make up for it. We are still in the middle of moving so blogging had to put onto the back burner. Todays ( and yesterdays!) green are both algae and are both greens that we eat almost every day. Super Spirulina and Bella Chlorella, as I like to call them.

Lets start with spirulina. It is a blue-green algae that naturally grows in fresh water. It is high in iron, vitamin A, and protein; as well as many other vitamins and minerals. My husband takes this as his daily “multivitamin.” Spirulina has high vitamin B’s content. My husband has had problems with taking B vitamins in the past but has had no problem with spirulina. It comes in pill or powder but the pills are obviously easier to get in, although I prefer the powder because it typically doesn’t have any binders or fillers. The only thing you have to watch out for with spirulina is the high vitamin A. Since vitamin A is fat-soluble it can build up over time. You don’t want to take two supplements with lots of vitamin A (like many prenatals’), but natural dietary vitamin A and spirulina should be okay. I took spirulina during pregnancy to help with my iron levels but was careful to not exceed the daily recommended allowance for vitamin A. You can read more about spirulina’s health benefits here
My favorite thing about taking spirulina is that it is like taking a daily multivitamin except in a source actually found normally in nature! Try mixing it with a little orange juice.

Chlorella is another fresh water algae, though not a blue-green algae (cyanobacteria) like spirulina. It has a pretty special place in my heart. When I was pregnant my hair got full and so shiny and my skin was super bright and glowed. After we had our little guy though my skin became dull and my hair started coming out in large clumps (which apparently is really common but freaked me out non the less). I also started craving greens, and when spinach and kale smoothies weren’t doing it, I knew it was time to turn to the big green: Chlorella. It is loaded with chlorophyll, vitamin C, and healthy fats. It is also a good source of many other vitamins and minerals. You can read more about chlorella’s nutrition hereChlorella is also known to bind with heavy metals which makes it a good detoxification tool. After I added chlorella to my diet my nails and hair got stronger and I started getting a lot of compliments on my skin. I like to make chocolate chlorella smoothies by blending frozen banana, cacao powder, coconut kefir, and chlorella. This smoothie really gives me a big energy boost. I drink it on mornings that coffee just won’t do it.

I hope this post inspires you to add some algae to your diet!

Do you take any “green” supplements?

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