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Health Benefits of Spirulina: Dosage, and Uses

Spirulina is a type of cyanobacterium known as blue-green algae.

It can reduce oxidation, lower blood pressure, and lower blood sugar levels.

Spirulina contains a variety of nutrients, such as B vitamins, beta-carotene, and vitamin E.

It is a source of vegan protein that contains antioxidants, minerals, chlorophyll, and phycocyanobilins.

However, it is one of the best-known supplements in the world.

Here are the health benefits of spirulina, its dosage, and uses.

Spirulina is Nutritious

Spirulina grows in salty freshwater, and it is cyanobacteria, a single-cell family of microbes often called blue-green algae.

A standard daily dose is 3 grams, but you can use it up to 10 grams per day. The following single tablespoon of dried spirulina powder (7 grams) contains:

  • 20 calories
  • 4.02 grams of protein
  • 1.67 grams of carbohydrate
  • 0.54 grams of fat
  • 8 milligrams (mg) of calcium
  • 2 mg of iron
  • 14 mg of magnesium
  • 8 mg of phosphorus
  • 95 mg of potassium
  • 73 mg of sodium
  • 0.7 mg of vitamin C

Well, spirulina is one of the most nutritious foods on the planet. Its protein is like eggs.

Therefore, it provides all the amino acids.

Many people claim it contains vitamin B12. However, there is no concrete evidence available.

May Help People With Cancer

Some evidence shows that spirulina has anti-cancer characteristics. Animal research shows it may reduce the size of the cancerous tumors.

One study examined 87 Indians with precancerous lesions in their mouth called oral submucous fibrosis (OSMF).

For those who took 1 gram a day for one year, 45% of lesions were lost, compared to only 7% in the control group.

However, half of these people redeveloped the lesions in the next year when they stopped taking it.

In addition, another study of 40 people with OSMF lesions, 1 gram of Spirulina a day, led to more improved symptoms of OSMF than a drug called pentoxifylline (1).

May Lower Blood Pressure

A major driver of many serious diseases, including heart attacks, strokes, and chronic kidney disease, is high blood pressure.

In one study, a dose of 4.5 grams of spirulina per day was shown to lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure among people with normal BP levels, while 1 gram was ineffective.

However, this decrease is supposed to be driven by increased nitric oxide production, an indicator molecule that helps relax and dilate your blood vessels (2).

Reduces LDL Cholesterol

In your body, fatty structures are defenseless against oxidative damage.

Therefore, lipid peroxidation is a major driver of several serious diseases.

For instance, oxidation of LDL cholesterol is one of the main reasons for heart disease.

Spirulina antioxidants seem effective in reducing human and animal lipid peroxidation.

Two grams per day reduced oxidative damage marks in a study of 25 patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

In addition, the level of antioxidant enzymes also increased (3).

Anti-Inflammatory Properties

Oxidative damage may harm DNA and cells. This damage can cause chronic inflammation, leading to cancer and other diseases.

Therefore, spirulina is an excellent source of antioxidants to protect cells from damage.

Phycocyanin can prevent free radicals and inflammatory molecules, which provide impressive antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects (4).

Prevents Heart Disease

Heart disease is the world’s leading cause of death. However, spirulina can influence many factors that cause heart disease.

For example, it can lower LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels. The study found that 2 grams of fiber per day improved DM (diabetes mellitus) in 25 people.

In another study, 1 gram daily decreased triglyceride levels by 16.3%, and LDL (bad cholesterol) by 10.1%.

Several other studies found positive effects—albeit with higher doses of 4.5 to 10 grams per day (5, 6, 7, 8).

May Control Blood Sugar Levels

Animal studies show it can lower sugar levels in the blood. However, it is also effective in humans.

People took 2 grams of spirulina a day for 2 months, experienced a slight reduction in blood sugar levels. They conducted this study on 25 people with type 2 diabetes.

Studies have estimated that a reduction of 1% in this marker, “HbA1c,” may decrease the risk of death related to diabetes by 21%.

The study was, however, small, and further study was needed (9, 10, 11).

Improves Muscle Strength

Oxidative damage caused by exercise, such as weight training, is an important part of the process.

Some plant foods have antioxidant properties that can help athletes and active people reduce this damage.

Spirulina appears useful, as certain studies have shown improved muscle strength and endurance.

Studies show that it improves endurance, increases the time for muscular fatigue during exercise (12, 13).

Relieves Allergic Rhinitis

Allergic rhinitis represents the inflammation of your nasal passages. Allergens like pollen, animal hair, or even wheat dust cause it.

Spirulina is effective in reducing allergic rhinitis symptoms (14).

The study shows the consumption of spirulina can reduce symptoms of allergies, such as allergic rhinitis, such as nasal discharge, sneezing, congestion, and itching (15).

Effective Against Anemia

A decrease in hemoglobin, or red blood cells, can lead to a life-threatening disease called anemia.

In older adults, anemia can lead to prolonged feelings of fatigue and weakness (16).

In a study, spirulina supplements increased the hemoglobin content and improved the immune function of red blood cells in 40 older people with a history of anemia (17).

Side effects of spirulina

Although spirulina is safe, it may have some side effects.

It may interact with other conventional medicines, so first talk to your doctor before you use a spirulina supplement.

Stop taking it right away and seek medical help if you notice side effects of spirulina supplements, such as an allergic reaction.

Conclusion

Spirulina is a kind of exceptionally healthy cyanobacteria called blue-green algae.

It may improve blood lipid levels, eliminate oxidation, reduce blood pressure, and reduce blood sugar.

Always ask your health care provider about the herbal supplements you are taking.

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