Spirulina Detox: What You Need to Know About this Powerful Blue-Green Algae, and More


Spirulina: What Is It?

Spirulina is one of the oldest living organisms on earth. 

Single-celled blue-green algae, spirulina grows in warm freshwater and saltwater, deriving its name from a unique spiral shape. It’s also a nutrient-dense vegan protein and has been considered a “superfood” for centuries. The Aztecs were the first to discover spirulina’s power and used it to boost endurance levels and treat various ailments.

Spirulina is still cultivated today, both as a whole food and dietary supplement. Packed with beta-carotene, vitamins B and E, and a potent protein called phycocyanin, this amazing aquatic plant is believed to offer many health benefits, some of which are backed by research and others still to be proven.

Besides being good for our bodies, spirulina is also good for the environment and requires far less water to harvest than land-based agricultural products. In fact, as early as 1974, the United Nations hailed spirulina the “best food for the future” due to its ability to withstand temperature extremes and its exceptional nutritional content.

How Spirulina Boosts Your Body’s Ability to Detox

The human body is truly a wonder. But while capable of detoxing itself, it won’t hurt to give that process a boost. That means paying particular attention to the three vital organs primarily responsible for filtering and removing harmful substances from our bodies:

To ensure they’re up to the job, you need to provide the liver, kidneys, and colon with the proper nutrients. That is where spirulina comes in. It’s rich in antioxidants that enhance the liver’s detoxifying powers, and it contains many of the building blocks of a healthy immune system and well-functioning nervous system.

There are many good reasons to use spirulina for detox. Here are 10 of the best:

  • Spirulina has an alkalizing effect on the body. That boosts liver function, which is essential to any detox.
  • Spirulina contains chlorophyll, which helps remove heavy metals, pollutants, and other toxins from the blood.
  • Spirulina is frequently alternated with chlorella for detoxifying the body.
  • Spirulina is packed with B-vitamins, including B-1 (thiamine), B-2 (riboflavin), B-3 (nicotinamide), B-6 (pyridoxine), B-9 (folic acid).
  • Spirulina is also high in other vitamins and minerals, including vitamin E, manganese, zinc, copper, iron, and selenium.
  • Just one tablespoon of dried spirulina contains 8 mg of calcium. That’s a lot more than raw spirulina.
  • Spirulina is an incredible source of protein, especially for vegetarians and vegans. In fact, spirulina is 62% amino acids and provides 4 grams of protein per 1 tablespoon serving.
  • Spirulina also contains gamma-linolenic acid, an essential fatty acid with fantastic anti-inflammatory properties, especially when taken with quality Omega-3 supplements. The only other place you’ll find gamma-linolenic acid is a mother’s breastmilk. 
  • Spirulina has potent antioxidant activity that can help protect the cells from damage., particularly phycocyanin and beta-carotene.
  • Finally, spirulina contains a very high concentration of bioavailable iron, making it ideal during pregnancy and for those suffering from anemia.
Closeup of woman holding and drinking tasty green smoothie milkshake on pink background

What are the Benefits of Spirulina Detox?

Adding spirulina to a well-balanced diet or your detox regimen offers a whole host of health benefits, including:

An Amazing Nutritional Profile

 A single tablespoon of dried spirulina gives you more than 4 grams of protein, 8 mg each of calcium and phosphorous, 2 mg of iron, 14 mg of magnesium, 95 mg of sodium, and 0.7 mg of vitamin C, along with thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, folate, and vitamins B-6, A, and K.

Spirulina and Weight Loss

Because a teaspoon of dry spirulina doesn’t contain a whole lot in the way of calories (20), carbohydrates (1.67 grams), or fat (0.54), adding it to your diet may help you drop unwanted pounds without sacrificing nutrition. 

In fact, according to the authors of a recent double-blind study, overweight people who regularly ate spirulina for three months showed real improvements in Body Mass Index or BMI.

It May Improve Gut Health

While more research on humans is needed, studies involving older mice suggest spirulina may help preserve a healthy gut as we age. But because spirulina doesn’t contain much fiber, it’s also essential to make healthy, high-fiber foods a regular part of your diet.

Spirulina May Help You Manage Diabetes

Some research suggests spirulina might help manage diabetes.

While these findings are encouraging, more studies are needed to confirm the results.

A Natural Way to Reduce Cholesterol, Lower Blood Pressure, and Prevent Heart Disease

A 2016 scientific review suggested spirulina supplementation may positively impact blood lipids or the amount of fat in the blood. The same study linked spirulina to significant decreases in LDL (bad) cholesterol and equally substantial increases in HDL (good) cholesterol.

In 2013, a study suggested that spirulina may play a role in preventing heart disease. Another published in 2016 suggested the blue-green algae could help overweight people with hypertension control their blood pressure.

Give Your Metabolism a Boost

According to a small-scale study published in 2016, people taking 6 grams of spirulina daily experienced beneficial metabolic effects, along with weight loss and enhanced health-related quality of life.

Nutrients in Spirulina: A Breakdown

From protein and antioxidants to essential vitamins and minerals, spirulina really is a nutritional powerhouse:

  • Protein: Dry spirulina is about 50% to 70% protein by weight, making it an ideal alternative to animal proteins and a great source of vital amino acids. And because spirulina lacks a cellulose wall, that protein is easily digested and absorbed.
  • Nucleic Acid: Dry spirulina is also about 5% nucleic acid by weight. Your body requires these molecules to produce DNA and RNA vitamins.
  • Iron: A diet adequate in iron guards against anemia. Anemia occurs when you lack enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen to your body’s tissues, resulting in weakness and fatigue.
  • Beta-carotene: Your body converts beta-carotene to vitamin A, which is essential for ensuring optimal vision and eye health, a robust immune system, and healthy skin and mucous membranes.
  • Vitamins K1 and K2: These K vitamins help the blood clot and strengthen bones.
  • Calcium: Calcium-rich foods like spirulina help strengthen bones and ensure a healthy heart and skeletal muscle function.
  • Magnesium: Your body uses magnesium in more than 350 different biochemical reactions. Magnesium also helps to prevent heart palpitations and muscle spasms.
  • Zinc: Zinc helps your immune system and metabolism function. Getting enough zinc in your diet is also crucial for the health of your skin, wound healing, and your sense of taste and smell.
  • Potassium: This electrolyte is essential for daily cell-to-cell communication and the overall functioning of our bodies.
  • B Vitamins: B vitamins are important for nerve, brain, and heart health. Spirulina supplementation can provide up to 60% of your body’s daily B-12 requirement. That’s especially important for vegetarians, as their diets typically lack adequate B-12.
  • GLA (Gamma-Linolenic Acid): This essential fatty acid is considered a healthy omega-6 oil and has anti-inflammatory benefits.

Safe Dosage for a Spirulina Detox

We recommend taking 3-5 grams of spirulina two or three times per day for detox.

It’s best to start with a small dose. You can always work your way up if you or your medical practitioner feel you require more of the nutrients contained in spirulina. Just don’t take more than 50 grams total per day.

There’s no evidence that the usual doses of spirulina cause any toxicity. But while a very safe nutritional supplement, like anything that comes from the sea, you want to be sure to only purchase spirulina from reliable sources that will guarantee it’s free of contamination.

Spirulina does have a relatively strong flavor, but as a “superfood” and nutrient provider, it’s really second-to-none. Many people tolerate the taste better when they mix dry spirulina into yogurt, a smoothie, or other foods.

Detoxing with Spirulina Supplements

We’ve provided the following recipe to help you get started on your spirulina detox. It tastes amazing and has all the nutrients you need. We also think it’s a great way to start your day!

stones stacked up balanced

One of our favorite Spirulina detox recipes

1 frozen banana (OR fresh + 1 cup ice)

1 cup (250 ml) coconut water

1 handful kale or spinach leaves

1 teaspoon spirulina (Recommended product: Restoriix)

1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

COMBINE all the ingredients into a blender.

BLEND until smooth and creamy

Wrapping It All Up:

To wrap it all up, it’s official, using Spirulina as either the primary component or a supporting one is effective for people that are looking to perform a detoxification. 

The benefits of a healthy and thorough detox of your body’s nature pH and free radicals are immense and can often be life changing when healthy habits are maintained afterwards. 

We highly recommend trying a Spirulina detox since it’s relatively safe for most people. If you’re looking for a simple and safe supplement to expedite the process, we recommend taking a look at our very own Restoriix, which has all the natural components to get the job done.