WHAT IS SPIRULINA?
Spirulina is a single-celled, blue-green algae that is rich in over a hundred vitamins and minerals. Spirulina is also found to be a good source of protein and iron. According to the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture), spirulina is made up of 60-70 percent protein and it contains significant amounts of calcium, niacin, potassium, magnesium, B vitamins and more. And it is important to do more extensive research about the algae.
In recent varied studies conducted at universities, spirulina is found to:
- Reduces high blood pressure
- Regulates cholesterol
- Fights cancer
- Boosts immune system
- Improves memory
- Rich in antioxidants
- Contains powerful anti-inflammatory properties
- Fights anemia
- Boosts muscle strength
- Lowers blood sugar levels, and more.
In Chad, Africa, during the 9th century, spirulina was harvested from lakes and ponds and was dried into cakes which they called “Dihe” or “Die”. In the present time, people from Chad still sell “Dihes” in markets which people buy to make a nutritious broth out of it. In the 16th century, Aztecs in Mexico called it “Tecuitlatl” which means the stone’s excrement. They too harvested the spirulina from the lakes and also turned it into cakes.
CULTIVATION PROCESSES AND FORMS
Spirulina is cultivated in raceway ponds that are made from cement or PVC plastic. The culture is gently and constantly mixed by paddle wheels to ensure that the nutrients in the pond are equally distributed. There are various forms of spirulina in the market. The most common forms are powder, pills, and capsules. It is crucial to clarify that the spirulina culture is not contaminated with other cyanobacteria and heavy metals to ensure safe consumption.