Where do I begin with spirulina? Let's start with answering: what is it? Spirulina is a dark blue-green algae dried powder. Actually, it's a cyanobacteria which can be unappetizing to eat (understandably). But let's talk about what makes it a "superfood" (a term used way too often but it is appropriate here). It has the highest percentage of protein by weight. Furthermore, the protein is highly bioavailable (digestible) and considered complete because of its amino acid profile. Beyond the protein content, there are other benefits of this blue-green algae stuff. Based on some studies it is an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, it can boost the immune system and help fight infections. For you athletes out there, particularly the endurance ones, spirulina is excellent in muscle recovery and reducing oxidative stress. You can see why the superfood label is fitting.
It is available in both powder and liquid form. Word of caution, because spirulina is grown and surrounded by water it is susceptible to the free floating toxins in the water and can become contaminated with heavy metals. To avoid these toxins purchase spirulina from a responsible grower who cultivates it organically.
Natural food dye: St. Patrick's Day is coming up...
Smoothies: I typically consume Spirulina in my smoothies or milk based drinks. Some athletes add this to their daily workout regime. Especially to help with recovery.
Coconut water with spirulina: You can mix 1 tsp - 1 tbsp of spirulina with coconut water. Delicious!
If you are feeling inspired and would like to try it (at least once) below is a recipe.
Green Frothy Milk
1 cup of flax milk (plain)
1/2 cup of kefir
1/2 tsp. of vanilla extract
2 dates, pitted
1 tsp. of Spirulina
//Mix into blender// Enjoy!
Please let me know if you have tried spirulina and how you enjoy the green stuff. Cheers!