Spirulina is a nutrient-rich microalga that has incredible health benefits. It is one of the healthiest and most natural superfoods available. In Europe, Spirulina is dried at a low temperature to preserve all of its beneficial nutrients.
What is Spirulina?
Spirulina is cyanobacteria, a blue-green microalga with a spiral shape that contains all that life needs to evolve. It was the first photosynthetic life form generated by nature 3.6 billion years ago.
Spirulina is one of the healthiest and most natural superfoods available. It is packed with essential minerals, vitamins, and amino acids. At the United Nations World Food Conference in 1974, Spirulina was announced as the most ideal food for mankind.
Spirulina was already consumed by several ancient civilizations, such as the Aztecs, Maya, Toltec, and Kanembu. It was an appreciated source of nutrients for many different people. One of the first known records of Spirulina (Arthrospira algae) being utilized as food by humans comes from Mesoamerica. Spirulina is also believed to have been used as food in North Africa since the 9th century. Cortez reported that the Aztecs used Spirulina as food when he arrived in their empire, and there is, for instance, an illustration in the Florentine Codex that depicts Aztecs harvesting spirulina algae off lakes by using ropes to skim the surface. According to the Florentine Codex, the algae was then dried into square cakes and used as food.
Spirulina was rediscovered during a European scientific mission in Chad, as a traditional food of the locals called dihé. It was a blue-green, dried cake made of a micro-organism which grew in the natural alkaline lagoons found in this region.
It was found that people had been consuming this for centuries not only in Chad but also in Mexico and other areas. Even though people here had an extremely poor diet, they did not suffer from malnutrition. (Source) Spirulina is a true Superfood!
Production of Spirulina
Spirulina develops and flourishes in high alkaline, warm freshwater, where the survival of other microorganisms is difficult or impossible. In the wild, spirulina is found in lakes with a high pH-value and high levels of carbonate and bicarbonate in tropical and subtropical climates.
Spirulina is easy and cheap to produce locally. It can be dried and served as a whole food but is also a popular dietary supplement. You can purchase spirulina flakes, tablets, and powder to add it to your food or the food of your pets. Many dogs really like to snack Spirulina. It is not only healthy, but it is also yummy!
The first large-scale Spirulina production plant, run by Sosa Texcoco, was established there in the early 1970s. Most cultivated spirulina is produced in open channel raceway ponds, with paddle-wheels used to agitate the water. The largest commercial producers of spirulina are located in the United States, Thailand, India, Taiwan, China, Pakistan and Burma (a.k.a. Myanmar).
Europe is a major consumer of superfoods, and in the past years, Spirulina farming has developed also here (France, Slovenia, Italy, Germany).
Spirulina has amazing Nutrition and Health Benefits
According to NASA, Spirulina is an ideal food. It grows quickly in a small, enclosed space, such as a space station, and it contributes to a rich and nutritious diet. They considered Spirulina complete food to consume in space!
Spirulina is also an ideal food source for undernourished populations. Self-sustaining Spirulina cultivation is being set up in various African villages and in communities where arable land is scarce.
When we take Spirulina, it scans the body liquids and removes anything toxic, which makes this microalga a powerful detoxifier. Spirulina also has a nutrition aspect, besides detoxifying, it nourishes the body.
There are many studies from all over the world that tell us the amazing benefits of this true superfood.
Spirulina is an excellent and rich source of protein. In fact, Spirulina has the highest and the most easily digestible source of protein in the world. It offers a complete form of protein, meaning it contains all 9 essential amino acids. This easily absorbed nutrient-rich food provides 60-70% vegan protein – more than triple of fish, meat, or soy!
Spirulina consists of antioxidants, multivitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B9, B12, C, and E. It is known as the highest vegan source of Vitamin B12.
It contains amino acids, iron, calcium, potassium, trace elements, phycocyanine, beta-carotene, and enzymes.
Studies have shown that its main health benefits include: (1) Anti-carcinogenic properties; (2) Anti-inflammatory, anti-viral and anti-allergenic properties; (3) Blood pressure reduction; (4) Blood Sugar Level reduction; (5) Detoxification of the body; (6) Fat Burning Properties; (7) Memory enhancer, and more!
Consuming Spirulina, we access its evolutionary wisdom and can renew our body!
Spirulina from Europe dried at a low Temperature versus Asian Spirulina
One of the most important aspects of quality Spirulina is the temperature at which the algae were dried.
We can find Spirulina today more and more in supermarkets but most of these products are imported from China, labeled as “non-EU” (country of origin). The temperature in the drying process of the algae is normally not stated in the product description.
Most Spirulina on the market from China and outside of Europe is dried at high temperatures of over 90°C. In the process, many of the nutrients and benefits are lost.
Most of the Spirulina produced in Europe is dried at a low temperature of maximum 40°C, allowing it to preserve all its nutrients and benefits.
Spirulina is also known to absorb heavy metals and toxins from its environment, so it’s absolutely vital to know it is from a clean source. So, when you are choosing a quality Spirulina, make sure to know its origin and the drying temperature.