Skip Navigation Links
 



                     


 



   
    Learn More     Subscribe    
Join Now!      Login
 
 
 
FREE HEALTH
NEWSLETTER
 
 
America's Worst Enemy Quiz
What is the leading cause of death in the United States?
 
 
 
 
G
reen Foods
 
Algae are green, or "blue-green," freshwater, one-celled organisms that can be grown, dried, and safely used by our bodies. They have become available in the nutritional product arena as supplemental nutrients to enhance body functions only in the last couple of decades. Chlorella, spirulina, and blue-green manna are three of the main products produced from algae. Although they are not exactly the same, they are similar enough that I will discuss them together.

Spirulina made a big hit in the 1970s and has been the most popular algae product. Chlorella, however, was the first available to my knowledge and is still sold in many health food stores in a powdered or tablet form. Blue-green manna is more recent and usually harder to obtain.

All of these blue-green algae, or plankton products, have been used as "high-protein" nutrients that contain all the amino acids. They are considered a tonic and/or rejuvenator of the body and are used commonly during weight-loss programs or fasting. I have spoken with many people who have done a juice-spirulina powder fast and felt extremely well, with more energy than usual. Besides the high protein and low fat levels of these algae, they contain substantial amounts of vitamins and minerals and plant chlorophyll; spirulina was recently measured as rich in GLA, or gamma-linolenic acid, the oil found in the evening primrose plant.

It is possible that the GLA found in spirulina and possibly these other products accounts for some of the positive effects that people experience when using them, including decreased appetite, weight loss, and improved energy levels, especially mental energy. I personally have used all of these products and must say I have experienced a subtle increase in mental clarity and alertness (not like a nervous, caffeine-type stimulation). These algae must subtly stimulate our nervous systems or release certain internal neurochemicals that create this "up" feeling.

There has not been much medical research on any of these products, but I think there should be. When people find interesting substances from nature, I believe it is medicine’s duty to investigate the activity of these products so we can apply them effectively in our lives. Such analysis with herbs has brought us the whole field of pharmacognosy/pharmaceutical medicine, and perhaps continued analysis of nature’s potential remedies will bring useful new substances and help us to better integrate the drug and nondrug therapies.

Add your comment      
About The Author
Elson M. Haas, MD is founder & Director of the Preventive Medical Center of Marin (since 1984), an Integrated Health Care Facility in San Rafael, CA and author of many books on Health and Nutrition, including ...more
 
Share   Facebook   Buzz   Delicious   Digg   Twitter  
 
 
 
 
 
 
From Our Sponsor
 
 
 
 
 
 
Featured Events
Wellness Inventory Certification Training
     September 16-December 16, 2014
     Teleclass, CA USA
 
Additional Calendar Links
 
Wellness, Communicating, dimension!

Search   
Home       Wellness       Health A-Z       Alternative Therapies       Find a Practitioner       Healthy Products       Bookstore       Wellness Inventory
Healthy Kitchen       Healthy Woman       Healthy Man       Healthy Child       Healthy Aging       Wellness Center       Nutrition Center       Fitness Center
Free Newsletter      What Doctor's Don't Tell You      Stevia.com      Discount Lab Tests      First Aid      Global Health Calendar      Privacy Policy     Contact Us

Disclaimer: The information provided on HealthWorld Online is for educational purposes only and IS NOT intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek professional medical advice from your physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.