Benefits of Blue Spirulina
While spirulina is well known as a superfood nowadays, especially in the natural health community, very few people know about the benefits of blue spirulina. Though they both come from the same source, there are subtle differences in their content, taste, and potential benefits. Like many people, if you are confused about adding blue spirulina to your diet regimen, continue reading till the end to learn more.
In this article, we’ll go over some of the most common health benefits of blue spirulina along with how to use it and important precautions. But before we get into how blue spirulina can benefit human health and well-being, first we’ll need to uncover what actually blue spirulina is and how it differs from green spirulina. So, let’s get started.
What is blue spirulina?
Blue spirulina is a special antioxidant pigment called phycocyanin that is isolated from cyanobacteria, commonly known as green spirulina or blue-green algae or in scientific circles as Arthrospira platensis.
Phycocyanin is the primary active ingredient found in green spirulina which gives it its brilliant blue color. Not only does it provide the deep blue color to the green spirulina, but it also has significant medicinal properties too that can benefit human health in many different ways.
Blue spirulina vs green spirulina
In its basic form, green spirulina is the blue-green algae. Farmers grow the algae in controlled environments and harvest them from the water sources, dry them, and eventually grind them to form green spirulina powder. This blue-green powder is widely added to dietary supplements for its unparalleled nutritional value all over the world.
To prepare blue spirulina, the algae is further processed. The primary active ingredient in the algae, phycocyanin, which is a special blue pigment, is isolated from the algae and kept in its extracted form for sale. Since in its purest form, blue spirulina is nothing more than the blue pigment phycocyanin, it has a bright blue color without any traces of green. Blue spirulina contains a higher concentration of antioxidants that can offer a range of health benefits.
Let’s take a look at some common ways in how blue spirulina can benefit human health.
Benefits of blue spirulina
Blue spirulina has several powerful health benefits. Currently, researchers are trying to understand its full potential in human health and well-being. So far, many promising results have come out. Here are some of them:
Blue spirulina may help reduce inflammation
Blue spirulina has significant anti-inflammatory qualities that can help reduce inflammation in the body. A decent amount of studies showed that phycocyanin, the key ingredient in blue spirulina, is effective in inhibiting the body’s inflammatory response.
For instance, in one study published in 2009 in Anesthesia and Analgesia, researchers confirmed that phycocyanin has both anti-inflammatory and antihyperalgesic activity.
Blue spirulina provides antioxidant support
Blue spirulina is nothing more than phycocyanin which is a special antioxidant compound found in green spirulina. Multiple studies suggest that phycocyanin has the capacity to protect from oxidative damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals are harmful unstable molecules that cause large chain reactions and damage cells, tissues, and even organs.
A 2016 Review in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine investigating the medical application of phycocyanin showed that phycocyanin has significant antioxidation and anti-inflammation actions.
Blue spirulina may boost immune health
Blue spirulina may help modulate and support immune health. Studies showed that phycocyanin has the potential to stimulate the secretion of cytokines that help fight against infections.
Blue spirulina may help remove heavy metals and toxins
Phycocyanin is a nitrogen-containing molecule. Nitrogen is capable to bind with heavy metals and toxins. Therefore, blue spirulina has the potential to bind with heavy metals and can help remove them from the body.
Blue spirulina may help lower blood pressure
Researchers have discovered that the pigment found in spirulina, phycocyanin, has noticeable antihypertensive effects. It can help increase the production of nitric oxide which is believed to be helpful in helping blood vessels relax and dilate.
In a 2007 report published in Lipids in Health and Disease, scientists concluded that phycocyanin found in spirulina is effective in reducing systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
How to use blue spirulina
Blue spirulina is a versatile dietary supplement that can be used in a number of different ways. You can add it to your favorite smoothies, sweet treats, noodles, baked foods, and pasta as well as others. The good news is that, unlike green spirulina blue spirulina does not have any fishy taste or smell.
Although about one teaspoon (about 2 grams) of blue spirulina powder is often considered a standard serving, it’s important to consult with a qualified herbal practitioner to determine your best dose.
Side effects and precautions on blue spirulina
Blue spirulina is generally considered safe when consumed in recommended amounts. There are no reported serious side effects so far. However, it’s important to choose only pure and natural blue spirulina from reliable sources. Any contamination may rec havoc in the body and contribute to a range of medical issues.
Besides, People with autoimmunity should avoid taking blue spirulina since it boosts the immune system. Finally, if you’re allergic to seafood, are pregnant, or nursing mom, please seek professional medical advice prior to taking blue spirulina.
Blue spirulina is a unique antioxidant food with several powerful health benefits. The most common benefits of blue spirulina include reducing inflammation, providing antioxidant support, and protecting from free radicals. Always ask your healthcare provider prior to adding any dietary supplements to your daily diet.