I agree with Billy Madison when it comes to most things: snack packs are delicious, Donkey Kong is the best game ever and peeing your pants is cool (Trust me, I’ve done it. But that’s for another post.)! What I do not agree with is that Chlorophyll is NOT boring! In fact, it is my new favorite thing.
About a year ago, I had a MAJOR brain fart when I was in the drug store buying Fish Oil. I was reading the label and realized…Holy Crap, there is FISH in fish oil!! I am a vegetarian and have been since 2008, so why it took me over 3 years to realize that “fish oil = fish = animal” is beyond me, but that is not the point…shut it. I’m smart.
I was taking fish oil for its Omega-3 fatty acids which helps grow strong hair and nails, promotes healthy skin and most importantly for me, gives added lube (hee hee) to my dangerously dry eyes. Fish Oil contains docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), which according to mayoclinic.com, also “lowers triglycerides, reduces the risk of heart attack, dangerous abnormal heart rhythms, and strokes in people with known cardiovascular disease, slows the buildup of atherosclerotic plaques (“hardening of the arteries”), and lowers blood pressure slightly”. All good, right?
I started researching veggie alternatives and realized this: Algaes are what small, bottom-feeding fish consume. These fish are then eaten by larger ones, and then eventually by humans in the form of fish or fish oil. So what if I cut out the middle man and simply ate the alqae? Cue: Spirulina and Chlorella!
Spirulina and Chlorella are fresh water, single-celled algaes that date back millions of years. They are both whole, natural foods that are completely and easily absorbed by the body. Both Spirulina and Chlorella contain very high levels of protein, a wide variety of minerals, trace elements, essential fatty acids, vitamins, antioxidants and pigments. They are said to be the most complete food source, in themselves, for humans and animals alike. They are often called “superfoods” because they contain pretty much everything your body needs!
I started taking Spirulina first because of its high concentration of beta-carotene, along with the omega-3′s (again, for my eye issues). It is also loaded with all of the B vitamins for energy and metabolism, plus A, C, D, E, and K. Spirulina has 58 times the iron of raw spinach and 28 times that of raw beef liver, plus between 65 and 71 percent complete protein. By comparison, red meat includes only 27 percent protein, while soy has 34 percent. WOW! There are several claims that Spirulina may also improve athletic performance by increasing fat burning potential and decreasing oxidative stress, as well as prevent certain diseases from progressing. Again these are CLAIMS that need more research, so that is as far as I will go with the subject.
Through my research of Spirulina, I came across its cousin Chlorella. I was originally impressed with Chlorella because of its levels of folic acid (good for baby makin’, ladies – mom, don’t get excited. No babies yet….) and its detoxing capabilities. Research of Chlorella claims it fights infections, strengthens the immune system, lowers blood pressure and cholesterol, stimulates the growth of “friendly” bacteria in the intestines, and promotes healing of intestinal ulcers, diverticulosis, colitis and Crohn’s disease. Chlorella is also said to prevent cancer, according to cancer.org, “through its ability to cleanse the body of toxins and heavy metals”. Some describe it as the perfect food, saying that it regulates blood sugar, kills cancer cells, strengthens the immune system, and even “reverses the aging cycle.”
So where does Chlorophyll fit in, except for my personal victory of working Billy Madison into a post? Chlorophyll is the natural chemical that gives these algaes, as well as other green leafy veggies, their dark green color. Remember the word “photosynthesis” from science class? Yea, it’s only the basis for sustaining the life processes of all plants and is the process in which chlorophyll turns those veggies green, but whatever. Chlorophyll is said to play an important role in prevention of certain cancers, as well as helps with anemia, enhances energy, detoxifies and cleanses.
I take both in the morning with breakfast and evening with dinner, along with my many other vitamins. Husband calls me an old lady because of my “pills” (I prefer mature woman,) but I just think he’s jealous of my sweet new container (see photo above). I order them from Swanson’s, which has fantastically pure vitamins and supplements. Plus, they are competitively priced.
Conclusion: Chlorophyll is awesome. Spirulina and Chlorella are awesome. Go get some.
Spirulina Image: kimberlysnyder.com