What Is Blue Spirulina?
Should You Add Blue Spirulina to Your Diet?
Today, those dedicated to holistic living laud spirulina powder as a superfood. But did you know that the consumption of spirulina dates back to the 1500s by the ancient Aztecs?
The Aztecs consumed Spirulina as an energy source by drying the algae and turning it into patties. Spirulina is mainly available in powder form and tablets as a dietary supplement.
The alga is available in blue and green colors, and both forms of spirulina powder benefit one's overall health. So, what is blue Spirulina?
Let's review blue Spirulina, its potential benefits, and more.
What Is Blue Spirulina?
Blue Spirulina is a pure natural extract derived from spirulina algae. The brilliant blue color is due to the pure phycocyanin chemical left by removing the green parts of the algae.
Blue Spirulina, unlike its green counterpart, has a neutral taste.
History of Spirulina
Before the modern-day implementation of spirulina powder as a nutritional supplement, algae were a food source for people as far back as the 1500s.
The ancient Aztecs were the first to discover the nutritional value of blue-green algae. The Aztecs harvested the spirulina algae from what is today known as Lake Texcoco in Mexico.
The intended use of Spirulina by the Aztecs was as an energy source during long journeys to the Gulf of Mexico.
Besides the American continents, Spirulina also grew in Africa, Lake Chad, in the north-central part of the continent. The algae were a staple in the daily diet of the native people of Chad.
Spirulina algae today
The spirulina algae today grow in Greece, Spain, the United States, etc. Spirulina grows best in environments with moderate to warm climates.
You can find it in bodies of water like lakes and ponds. Nevertheless, much of the commercially available blue spirulina powder is grown in labs.
What Makes Spirulina Unique?
Spirulina is an excellent source of nutrients for humans. It became famous after its successful use by NASA's astronauts as a dietary supplement during space missions.
Blue-green algae have shown the ability to improve the immune system due to the unique blend of proteins, minerals, and other ingredients.
The unique mix of ingredients paired with the anti-inflammatory properties is why Spirulina is a modern superfood.
Spirulina has an average protein content of 60%, much higher than other natural food sources.
What Does Blue Spirulina Taste Like?
Besides the striking blue color, the increasing interest in the powder, as opposed to its green counterpart, is due to the taste.
More notably, the blue Spirulina's lack of flavor does not taste like anything. This lack of fishy taste associated with the green form of Spirulina makes it the perfect neutral substitute.
You can add blue spirulina powder to any natural food or drink and not worry about it having a fishy taste.
Blue Spirulina vs. Green Spirulina
Both blue and green come from the spirulina algae. Both offer high nutritional value and many potential health benefits.
Nevertheless, there are numerous distinctions between the green and blue Spirulina.
Green is spirulina powder's basic form because it is a whole-cell alga that looks and tastes like seaweed. The algae grow in controlled environments and ponds.
The farmers that harvest the algae first dry it, grinding it into spirulina powder. Spirulina in this form is distinctive by its solid fishy flavor.
Some of the benefits include improving muscle strength and lowering cholesterol.
Additionally, the powder is a decent source of beneficial nutrients. As it is a whole food, green Spirulina has excellent value in human nutrition.
Blue spirulina powder is a natural extract. The blue form farmers extract by grinding the algae until they separate the green parts.
The final extract is pure Phycocyanin in a striking blue pigment. Blue Spirulina is a great substitute, as not everyone can handle the strong fish taste.
Blue Spirulina tastes neutral, and you can incorporate it into various meals. The neutral taste and protein content also makes blue Spirulina suitable for vegans.
Blue Spirulina is full of many antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Moreover, the blue powder may improve digestion and boost energy levels.
Potential Health Benefits of Blue Spirulina
Spirulina is rich in nutrients, carotenoids, and antioxidants. Among the many health benefits, blue Spirulina may have the potential to protect your cells from damage.
Some of the nutrients in blue Spirulina include the following:
- B complex vitamins
- Gamma linolenic acid (essential fatty acid).
Some of the potential benefits of Spirulina may be the following:
- Weight loss boost
- Immune system boost
- Oxygen uptake
- Anti-cancer properties
- Reduce inflammation
- Protect against liver damage
- Protect against allergic reactions
- Protect the digestive system.
It may improve body weight loss.
Natural supplement manufacturers promote blue Spirulina as a weight loss solution as it is the body's best natural source of protein.
The high protein content may be beneficial by reducing appetite and promoting fat burning.
Blue Spirulina may encourage a more significant need for fats (lipids) to burn as energy by triggering "thermogenesis" (fat-burning process) within the body.
It may boost endurance and oxygen uptake.
Blue Spirulina's essential amino acid composition and high protein content may be crucial for muscle building.
The research found that taking Spirulina may increase oxygen uptake and isometric muscular strength and endurance of the body.
Additionally, it can boost nitric oxide, which may enhance overall athletic performance.
Potential potent antioxidant and anti-cancer properties
Blue Spirulina contains a large number of antioxidants. Due to its antioxidant properties, it may bind free radicals and remove radionuclides and salts from heavy metals.
According to available research, the immune and antioxidant properties may play a role in cancer prevention.
One human research study found that the algae may have an inhibitory effect on oral carcinogens. Nonetheless, there are no studies on other types of cancer and Spirulina.
Potential anti-inflammatory properties
Due to the perceived anti-inflammatory properties of blue Spirulina, it may help relieve joint pain in people suffering from chronic pain.
Moreover, it may help reduce inflammation and allow people to move pain-free.
It may help lower high blood pressure.
Scientists have observed during research that the phycocyanin pigment contained in Spirulina may have antihypertensive properties.
Due to its antihypertensive properties, blue Spirulina may help treat high blood pressure. A study conducted in Italy discovered that a specific peptide known as SP6 reduces high blood pressure.
During the research, scientists observed the ability of SP6 to trigger the release of Nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is a signaling molecule that may aid blood vessel relaxation and dilation.
It may reduce the risk of heart disease, anemia, and hay fever
Blue Spirulina may reduce the risk of heart disease since it is rich in iron. Regularly it, either in your diet or pill form, may prevent the development of atherosclerosis and anemia.
The potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties may also help as an alternative treatment for hay fever.
Potential to protect the digestive system
Yeast infections have increased due to a diet high in sugar and processed foods. Spirulina may help the intestines' healthy bacterial flora develop.
The ability of blue Spirulina to boost the immune system may also aid the body in getting rid of candida cells.
Another way it may protect your digestive tract is by improving the gastrointestinal issues relating to IBS. Some of the issues associated with IBS are gas, bloating, and diarrhea.
It may help with allergy symptoms.
Specific animal and test tube studies suggest Spirulina may help with allergy symptoms. Spirulina may protect against allergic reactions by preventing histamine release.
Histamines lead to allergy symptoms, including soft-tissue swelling, hives, runny nose, and watery eyes.
It may help with diabetes type 2
A small group with type 2 diabetes examined how Spirulina affected their blood glucose levels. For two months, consuming just 2 grams of Spirulina every day, the study has shown results in reduced blood glucose levels.
The study documented a 1% decline in the critical marker for long-term glucose management, which may lessen diabetes-related deaths by over 20%.
It may improve energy levels due to the vitamins.
Blue spirulina powder contains all vitamins besides vitamin D. The potent mix of vitamins may improve human energy levels.
Also, the vitamin E present in Spirulina may positively affect the hormonal system in both men and women.
How Do People Consume It?
There are many ways to consume this tasteless powder. Some people prefer to mix it in their drinks, like tea or juice, while others put it in their natural food.
Because of the striking color, it has become popular on social media for creating smoothie bowls, smoothies, etc.
Other fun recipes include adding Spirulina, like pancakes and baked goods, when preparing a meal.
You can use blue Spirulina to make and drink tea throughout the day. Add one tablespoon of the powder to your water or juice and drink it after stirring it well.
Adding Spirulina to your smoothie bowls will give you a vibrant dish you can share on social media. For an added pop of color, you can add fresh fruit to your smoothies and food.
How to Dose It
Blue Spirulina is available in pill and powder form on the natural supplement market. While it is generally considered a safe substance because it is natural, it is still essential to be safe.
Although I have referenced some studies involving children, before giving Spirulina to your child, it is best to consult your pediatrician for a safe dose.
In addition, expectant women should consult a physician before taking any dietary supplement.
As for otherwise healthy adults, a standard dose is four to six tablets per day (500 mg pills).
Potential Risk for Humans
Even though blue Spirulina is a natural extract, that does not mean that there are no potential side effects. The potential health risks are why you should take dietary supplements under your doctor's supervision.
- Contaminated Spirulina can be toxic, so you should only buy from reputable brands.
- It may interact with some prescription medications.
- Avoid taking it if you have phenylketonuria (PKU). Spirulina is rich in amino acids, and people with PKU cannot metabolize the amino acid phenylalanine.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is blue Spirulina?
Blue Spirulina is a pure natural extract derived from spirulina algae. The brilliant blue color is due to the pure phycocyanin chemical left by removing the green parts of the algae. Blue Spirulina has a neutral taste.
How does blue Spirulina differ from green Spirulina?
Blue Spirulina is a natural extract with a neutral taste, while green Spirulina is a whole-cell alga with a strong fishy flavor. Both offer high nutritional value and potential health benefits.
What are some potential health benefits of blue Spirulina?
Potential health benefits of blue Spirulina include weight loss boost, immune system support, oxygen uptake, anti-cancer properties, reduced inflammation, protection against liver damage and allergic reactions, and digestive system support.
Can blue spirulina help with weight loss?
Blue Spirulina is promoted as a weight loss solution due to its high protein content, which may help reduce appetite and promote fat burning by triggering thermogenesis within the body.
How can blue Spirulina improve athletic performance?
Blue Spirulina's essential amino acid composition and high protein content may help build muscles, increase oxygen uptake, and enhance endurance. It can also boost nitric oxide, potentially improving overall athletic performance.
Does blue Spirulina have antioxidant and anti-cancer properties?
Blue Spirulina contains numerous antioxidants that may help bind free radicals and remove radionuclides and salts from heavy metals. Some research indicates that it may play a role in cancer prevention, but additional research is required.
Can blue Spirulina help lower high blood pressure?
Phycocyanin pigment in Spirulina has antihypertensive properties, which may help treat high blood pressure. One study found that a specific peptide called SP6 could reduce high blood pressure by triggering the release of nitric oxide.
Is blue Spirulina helpful for people with diabetes?
Small research suggests that Spirulina may help in the management of type 2 diabetes by lowering blood glucose levels. Two months of regular Spirulina consumption of 2 grams had this result.
How can I incorporate blue Spirulina into my diet?
Blue Spirulina can be added to drinks, smoothie bowls, pancakes, and baked goods. Its neutral taste and striking color make it a versatile and visually appealing ingredient.
Are there any risks associated with consuming blue Spirulina?
Potential risks include contamination, interaction with prescription medications, and the presence of the amino acid phenylalanine, which people with phenylketonuria (PKU) cannot metabolize. Consult a doctor before taking blue Spirulina as a supplement.
Spirulina has a long consumption history, dating back to the 1500s when the ancient Aztecs used it as an energy source. They dried the algae and turned it into patties, while today, it is mainly available in powder and tablet forms.
Blue Spirulina is a natural extract derived from spirulina algae, which has a brilliant blue color due to the pure phycocyanin chemical. Unlike its green counterpart, blue Spirulina has a neutral taste, making it a more versatile addition to various meals.
Spirulina is renowned for its high protein content (approximately 60%), which is significantly higher than other natural dietary sources. It is also rich in nutrients, carotenoids, and antioxidants and has been used by NASA astronauts as a dietary supplement during space missions.
Blue Spirulina offers numerous potential health benefits, including weight loss, immune system boost, oxygen uptake improvement, anti-cancer properties, reduction of inflammation, protection against liver damage, alleviation of allergic reactions, and protection of the digestive system.
You can incorporate blue Spirulina into your diet, mixing it into drinks like tea or juice, adding it to smoothie bowls, or incorporating it into recipes like pancakes and baked goods. It can be purchased in powdered or pill form.
Effects of spirulina consumption on body weight, blood pressure, and endothelial function in overweight hypertensive Caucasians: a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial.
This study found that spirulina supplementation reduced body weight and blood pressure and improved endothelial function in overweight participants.
The effects of Spirulina on allergic rhinitis.
This study demonstrated that Spirulina could significantly improve the symptoms of allergic rhinitis, such as nasal discharge, sneezing, congestion, and itching. Link: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18343939/
A randomized study to establish the effects of Spirulina in type 2 diabetes mellitus patients.
This study found that spirulina supplementation significantly reduced blood glucose levels among type 2 diabetes patients.
Spirulina in Clinical Practice: Evidence-Based Human Applications
This review article presents clinical evidence on the health benefits of Spirulina, including its effects on cholesterol, blood pressure, immune function, anemia, and cancer prevention. Link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3136577/
Antioxidant, Immunomodulating, and Microbial-Modulating Activities of the Sustainable and Ecofriendly Spirulina
This review article highlights Spirulina's potential antioxidant, immunomodulating, and microbial-modulating activities, which contribute to its overall health benefits. Link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5297475/
What is blue Spirulina? In a nutshell, it is blue-green algae full of potential health benefits to keep your body in shape. The powder is a great diet addition for those dedicated to holistic living, as it is full of protein and vital nutrients.
Therefore, after learning everything about this fantastic alga, you can now decide whether to consume it and adopt a healthier lifestyle.
To know more about our products, visit Wild Foods Shop.