Have you heard of Spirulina? I recently tried it for the first time.
I first learned about Spirulina at nutrition school while studying the raw food diet. Spirulina is a blue-green algae found in pristine freshwater lakes, rivers and ponds. I admit I was a little skeptical about eating algae, however, the more I learned, the more curious I became. Spirulina is a superfood with many health benefits, including:
- Spirulina is most known for it’s ability to strengthen the immune system; some reports indicate regular consumption of Spirulina will help reduce the frequency and impact of colds, flu and other illness.
- It is great for women: it’s strong anti-inflammatory agents help ease symptoms of PMS, it has 26 times the calcium of milk and is also is high in bio-available iron, so it can help those with anemia or iron deficiency.
- It is an excellent source of plant-based protein; gram for gram Spirulina has more protein than beef.
Here is more great information about Spirulina:
My first experiment with eating this algae involved adding it to a smoothie – since it is packed with protein, I knew this would be a great recovery drink after a tough workout. How was it? Well, the color was amazing! I’ve never made such a deep green smoothie, even when I loaded it up with spinach and kale. It tasted a lot like green juice, perhaps slightly bitter. I balanced this by adding sweet fruit, like berries and banana. Since I really like green juice, I enjoyed this refreshing and nutritious smoothie and I can’t wait to try it in my home made salad dressing next time I whip up a batch. If you haven’t had green juice before, this may take a few taste tests. Add less Spirulina initially and build up to a full serving and adding your favorite fruits will help a lot. Here is my recipe for a Spirulina Smoothie:
- 8 oz. coconut water
- 1-2 tsp. Spirulina
- ½ banana, sliced
- A handful of your favorite berries – I used a blueberry / strawberry combo!
- A handful of ice cubes
- Combine all ingredients, blend well and enjoy!
Questions for you: Will you be willing to try Spirulina? How will you add this into your nutrition plan? Let me know!