Green food supplements or "superfoods" are totally natural
chlorophyll rich foods. They may be derived from either grasses or
algae. They have similar properties because they all contain large
amounts of chlorophyll. Customers might find the array of products
quite confusing, as all profess to do wonders for your health. This
article will hopefully help you to find the right green food supplement
for your individual needs.
To understand green foods, it is important to look at the substance
that lends them their green quality - chlorophyll. All plants contain
at least some chlorophyll; it has been referred to as the "blood of
plants" and is indeed rather similar to haemoglobin at a molecular
level. Chlorophyll rich foods have the action of building the blood;
they contain a wide range of nutrients including iron and B vitamins
that will help to treat anaemia. Chlorophyll has been shown to stop
bacterial growth; counteract yeast and fungi; and detoxify the body
of drugs and carcinogens. It can help to reduce inflammation; renew
tissue and counteract bad breath and body odour. Chlorophyll can halt
tooth decay when used as a tooth powder. Chlorophyll is a friend of
the liver; it helps to counteract the toxic effects of modern western
It should be noted that in order to fully benefit from green food
products, poor diet and lifestyle habits must be addressed. If you
use these foods as a substitute for eating a wide variety of vegetables
and wholegrain foods, you will not feel their full effect.
Micro algae are primitive organisms; they were among the first life
forms on earth. They are unusual in that they do not fall readily
into either category - plant or animal, but exist somewhere in between.
All algae are rich in easily assimilated protein, nucleic acids, minerals
and beta-carotene; they also contain appreciable amounts of GLA and
Omega-3 essential fatty acids. Nucleic acids (RNA and DNA) help to
renew cells and thus reverse the degenerative aging process. The micro
algae that are available in the Haelan Centre are spirulina,
blue-green algae and chlorella.
The protein digestibility of spirulina is rated at 85% versus about
20% for beef. This is because the protein it contains has been pre-digested
by the algae. Spirulina is useful for vegetarians who are often lacking
in protein. Signs of protein deficiency include weakness, cravings
for protein rich foods and over consumption of foods such as cheese
and refined soya products. Spirulina also contains Mucopolysacharides
(MPs), which have the effect of making connective tissue more elastic
and resilient. MPs are also strongly anti-inflammatory.
Spirulina is suitable for support in the treatment of: anaemia;
hepatitis; gastritis; diabetes; hypoglycaemia; obesity; overeating;
malnourishment; poor skin tone; chronic skin problems. It may also help to increase
mental capacity. Spirulina is not suitable for: people with
signs of coldness accompanied by dampness (water retention; cysts;
mucus and yeasts in the lower abdomen). It is suitable for dampness
with signs of heat.
Please note: spirulina may be taken safely during pregnancy,
but be sure to build up the dosage slowly, to avoid rapid detoxification.
See Notes on taking algae.
Chlorella contains slightly less protein than spirulina, much less
beta-carotene and twice the nucleic acid and chlorophyll. It also
contains more essential fatty acids than spirulina. It is less cooling
and more gently cleansing. Chlorella is more expensive because of
the processing required improving the digestibility of the tough outer
cell wall and the complex harvesting techniques. This tough cell wall
binds with heavy metals, pesticides and carries the toxins safely
out of the body. Chlorella has a property known as CGF or Chlorella
Growth factor. This is related to the nucleic acid, which has been
shown to have immune strengthening properties improving the activity
of T- and B- cells, which defend against viruses and other invading
microorganisms. CGF promotes normal growth, but does not promote the
growth of tumours.
Chlorella is suitable for support in the treatment of: viral
and fungal overgrowth and other problems stemming from a weakened
immune system; injuries; slow growth patterns; MS; sciatica and other
nerve disorders. It may also help to reduce cholesterol and prevent athereosclerosis.
Chlorella is not suitable for: those who are overweight or
pregnant (if you have been taking chlorella one year prior to conception
you may continue to take it).
These algae should be used with caution, particularly those with a
thin, dry constitution. It is particularly useful for help to alleviate
depression and sluggishness and for concentrating and focusing the
mind. When taken in conjunction with a diet low in toxins, it is said
to induce a "blissed out feeling." Wild blue-green algae reduce damp-heat
and help to overcome liver stagnancy. It is ideal for overweight,
robust, excessive people who may have consumed an excess of saturated
fats as found in meat, dairy and refined foods.
Wild blue green algae is suitable for support in the treatment
of: any condition associated with dampness - tumours, arthritis,
M.S. and candida overgrowth; cocaine or amphetamine addiction.
Wild blue green algae is not suitable for: people who are frail
or those with signs of coldness, thinness or dryness. It can also
cause individuals to become "spacey" and unfocussed if they have been
taking it for too long, or if it is unsuited to their constitution.
Avoid if you are pregnant (if you have been taking wild blue green algae
one year prior to conception you may continue to take it as long as
you are still suited to it).
See sections below for dosages.
- Digestive upset or mild headache may indicate a mild healing reaction
- The more toxins you have in your system, the more slowly you should
increase the dose.
- Take between meals for an energy boost.
- Take for a maximum of six days in a week.
- Algae are more readily digested in powder form, especially those
with weak digestive systems. The powder may be mixed with apple
juice; fruit puree; or soup.
Start with a minimum dose - two or three capsules or a quarter of
a teaspoon, increase according to your needs, until you experience
more energy and fewer cravings for protein. The maximum recommended
dose is one or two heaped teaspoons of powder per day or ten grams
of tablets / capsules.
These micro-algae are more potent and so are taken in smaller amounts.
The daily dose of chlorella for prevention of disease is two to three
grams. Higher doses (six to ten grams) may be taken during illness
under the guidance of a practitioner.
Only one or two grams of wild blue green algae are needed for prevention
of disease. Three to ten grams may be taken if required, but only
under the guidance of a practitioner.
The therapeutic properties of wheat grass and barley grass
are practically identical, although barley grass is slightly more
easily digested. Wheat and barley grass do not contain gluten (as
the grain does) and are therefore suitable for those with allergies
to wheat or barley. In powder or capsule form grasses contain slightly
less chlorophyll and beta-carotene than the algae. They are about
20% protein (much less than the algae); they are rich in a wide variety
of vitamins and minerals depending on the soil in which they are grown.
Unlike the algae, grasses contain digestive enzymes, which help the
body deal with processing toxic or indigestible material in the gut.
The chlorophyll in the grasses also aids this process. The grasses
contain a fraction called P4D1, which has a very powerful anti-inflammatory
effect. This is in addition to the anti-inflammatory action of chlorophyll
and MPs. They also contain a powerful anti-oxidant called SOD (superoxide
dismutase), which slows cellular degeneration due to exposure to free
radicals.Wheatgrass is more cooling and cleansing than spirulina and
chlorella, but less so than blue green algae.
Wheatgrass or Barleygrass is suitable for support in the treatment
of: arthritis; constipation; anaemia; fatigue; pre-menstrual syndrome;
yeast imbalance; heavy metal toxicity.
Those with the following conditions should use cereal grasses with
caution: weak, frail people with signs of coldness. Chlorella
or spirulina may be more suitable.
Fresh juice is more cooling and is useful for a more robust person
(heat or excess signs, aversion to heat, yellow tongue coating, loud
voice, reddish complexion and extroverted manner). Fresh juice may
not be quite as abundant in nutrients because of the type of soil
it is grown in. That said, it will retain some extra nutrients and
qualities due to its fresh and minimally processed form. The dried
forms are most suitable for those with signs of dampness - excess
mucus, yeast imbalance or cysts.
One rounded teaspoon of juice powder is mixed with half a cup of water.
Ideally taken one hour or more before meals, on an empty stomach.
Take once a day for maintenance, two or three times a day for treating
disease. Due to the detoxifying nature of the grasses you might experience
a mild headache, diarrhoea or other discomfort. If this occurs, halve
your next dosage. If the symptoms persist, discontinue use, and try
a less detoxifying product such as chlorella or spirulina.
Every green food will have therapeutic properties described under
the chlorophyll rich food section above. Try to include a large proportion
of green foods in your diet to counteract environmental toxins and
provide a wide range of nutrients.
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