Health Benefits of Spirulina and Chlorella

October 04, 2019

Health Benefits of Spirulina and Chlorella

Over the past few years, many new foods have become available to the health conscious. Many of these include healing herbs, exotic fruits and vegetables, healthy oils and nutritional yeasts that are widely used by those seeking a more natural and healthier way of life. The most remarkable healing New Age food which contains the highest concentrations of whole food nutrition known to exist on earth is the micro-algae; of these, there are three main categories of single celled microalgae or blue green algae.  They are: chlorella, spirulina and dunianiella. In this brief guide, we will talk about the nutritional facts, health benefits and ways to use spirulina and chlorella for overall health and well being, as well as for disease prevention.

What are blue-green algae?

Micro-algae are the most primitive and earliest life forms to have inhabited planet Earth. They are an indispensable part of the food chain and our ecosystem. While new to the west, microalgae have been used for centuries in the Orient as a source of vitamins and proteins. Ancient Aztec civilizations also used microalgae and seaweeds as part of their diet. 

What is Chlorella?

Chlorella is a green micro-alga that grows in fresh water all over the world. It contains almost 60% protein and amino acids that are essential to human nutrition. For this rich protein content, it is used extensively today in protein powders and supplements. It also contains a lot of chlorophyll.

What is Spirulina?

According to the WHO, Spirulina is a superfood that is rich in iron and protein. In fact, so rich it is in nutrition that the WHO has declared it as the ‘best food for the future’. Spirulina contains nearly 65-70% protein with all the amino acids in perfect balance. At the West German International Food Expo, Spirulina was awarded the best natural food award. United Nations has conducted tests on Spirulina and found it to be completely free from toxins. 

Differences Between Spirulina and Chlorella



Multi celled, spiral shaped plant

Single celled, round shaped plant

Belongs to class Cyanophyceae

Belongs to class Chlorophyceae

Has no true nucleus

Has a nucleus that measures 3-8 microns in size

Contains less iron than Chlorella

Chlorella provides 12 times more iron than Spirulina

Has less chlorophyll than Chlorella

Contains nearly 5 times the chlorophyll as Spirulina

Contains less calcium than Chlorella

Has nearly 3 times the calcium as Spirulina

Spirulina contains more vitamin B12 than Chlorella

Contains less vitamin B12 than Spirulina

Spirulina Benefits

Cleansing and Detox with Spirulina

Spirulina helps promote natural cleansing of the body. You will start to feel lighter and more cheerful and will also have more energy.

Restore and Fortify with Spirulina

Regular intake of good quality Spirulina can eliminate deficiencies and regulate your metabolism. You will recover quickly from workout or injury. It also boosts resistance and activates the natural defense system of the body.  This will enable you to be in a better position to deal with the stresses of day to day life.

Spirulina As a Powerful Antioxidant

Spirulina is exceptionally rich in antioxidants and neutralizes free radicals. A study demonstrated 71% antioxidant activity for a group taking Spirulina extracts while the activity was just 54% for the group that did not take the extracts.

Spirulina for Cancer Prevention

Studies are underway to show that Spirulina could eliminate certain cancers. Preliminary reports suggest that spirulina extracts could reverse oral leukoplakia in tobacco chewers in India. 

Spirulina is Cardio Protective

Studies show that spirulina reduces LDL or bad cholesterol while increasing good cholesterol or HDL. Some studies also suggest that the rich vitamin C, selenium, beta carotene and vitamin E content of Spirulina offers significant protection against cardiovascular diseases.

Spirulina Can Eliminate Anemia

One spoonful of spirulina a day can eliminate anemia or iron deficiency.

Spirulina Can Prevent Malnutrition

In many African countries, babies have been saved from malnourishment by giving spirulina to their mothers, which increases lactation supply.

Reduce PMS Symptoms With Spirulina

Many doctors recommend foods rich in vitamin B, zinc, magnesium, GLA, beta carotene, etc. to women suffering from PMS. It is no wonder that many PMS supplements contain Spirulina, which is rich in these vitamins and minerals. It is an ideal natural food to deal with PMS pain.

Spirulina Benefits the Skin

Spirulina is rich in many ingredients that are ideal for skin care. Beta carotene helps keep wrinkles at bay. Chlorophyll is useful in skin cell building and fights skin inflammation. GLA or gamma linoleic acid, which is not produced in the body, protects the skin against UV radiation and dehydration. Trace minerals in spirulina are beneficial for optimal functioning of the skin. The zinc in the alga can also prevent acne and heal wounds.

Chlorella Benefits

Chlorella for Detoxification

In Japan, Chlorella is considered a first class detoxifying agent that can chelate heavy metals like cadmium, mercury and lead. It can also remove alcohol from the liver. In many countries, chlorella is used as the main detoxification agent to remove mercury from dental fillings. The heavy chlorophyll content removes clogged up waste from bowels and purifies blood.

Chlorella Helps Build Immunity

Chlorella is an excellent immune system booster. Its unique cell wall has the ability to fight cancer cells and its rich content of beta carotene, zinc, selenium, amino acids, calcium, etc. help support a healthy immune system. Studies have shown that people who develop cancer normally have low levels of beta carotene and vitamin A in their blood. So, regular intake of chlorella can improve immune system function.

Chlorella Boosts Brain Power

Chlorella can enhance memory function, which is why many call it a Brain Super Food. The higher levels of beta carotene and vitamin C in the alga helped boost brain power and memory. Also, the unique cell walls of chlorella chelate toxic waste from the blood, which is often responsible for cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients.

Chlorella Improves Heart Health

Research has shown that long term use of Chlorella can reduce bad cholesterol and also improve elasticity of arteries to normalize blood pressure. Moreover, the rich chlorophyll and carotenoids content reduce the damage inflicted by free radicals, thereby minimizing oxidative damage and plaque buildup associated with arteriosclerosis.

 How to Take Spirulina and/or Chlorella

For general health maintenance, take 3-4 grams of chlorella or 1-3 grams of spirulina powder daily. For symptom relief or for cancer, one can safely consume up to 30 grams per day. The best time to take these superfoods is just before breakfast. As much as possible, avoid caffeinated beverages and alcoholic drinks immediately after taking these super foods. You can also take these supplements with your main meals or in divided doses throughout the day.

Are there any dangers or side effects of spirulina and chlorella?

Research has shown that these are natural foods and they can be consumed even in large doses without any side effects or contraindications. To date, there have been no detrimental effects of chlorella or spirulina. In other words, both are perfectly safe nutritional supplements without any dangers.


Skin Saver Remedies by Juta Stepanovs

Chlorella: The Emerald Food By Dhyana Bewicke, Beverly A. Potter

Medical Disclaimer

The content found on this website is for informational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Information and statements regarding health related benefits of certain ingredients are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The information provided is not meant to substitute the advice provided by your personal physician or other medical professional. Do not use the information found within this website to self-diagnose any medical conditions or treat any health problems or diseases. The information provided is not intended to prescribe or be taken as medical advice.

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