The three most common “green” superfoods that have been on the market for years now are blue-green algae, spirulina and chlorella. They are all potent for different reasons, but at the heart of these supplements is chlorophyll. Eerily similar to our own hemoglobin, (the only difference is the central atom of chlorophyll is magnesium instead of iron); chlorophyll carries a wide array of benefits for us on a cellular level. Of the concentrated sources of chlorophyll, all of these algae are concentrated sources, but I’d like to take a look at chlorella today.
Chlorella is a supplement that I have used for years now as a daily supplement. A common question I get: ”If I already eat a wide array of healthy green veggies, why do I need to take any supplements at all?” Reasonable question. The reality is that we just don’t eat enough green foods to obtain the therapeutic doses of chlorophyll that can really provide significant cellular and immune support. Every day we are bombarded with toxins; the power of chlorella is as a detoxifying agent. Our bodies process a large amount of metabolic waste through our bowels. Chlorella aids in the removal of this metabolic waste and other toxins very efficiently. Chlorella also contains numerous vitamins, carotenoids, minerals, amino acids, fatty acids, beta-glucans, protein, fiber and chlorella growth factor (CGF).
All of this is good, but Chlorophyll’s real power is in its profound “binding” capacity with a wide array of toxins. Chlorophyll-dense supplements like chlorella, help bind with potential cancer causing elements in our system and prevent damage to our DNA. According to the Linus Pauling Institute:
A recent study showed that human colon cancer cells undergo cell cycle arrest after treatment with chlorophyllin (15). The mechanism involved inhibition of ribonucleotide reductase activity. Ribonucleotide reductase plays a pivotal role in DNA synthesis and repair, and is a target of currently used cancer therapeutic agents, such as hydroxyurea (15). This provides a potential new avenue for chlorophyllin in the clinical setting, sensitizing cancer cells to DNA damaging agents.
All of that is to say that dense sources of chlorophyll are probably a good bet when it comes to protecting our DNA and reducing potential carcinogenic impact that environmental toxins can have on our body. The reality is that is is almost impossible to get enough chlorophyll in our daily diet. We just don’t eat enough “green” food. It takes time and effort and there is only so much broccoli, spinach, or kale that we can choke down. A daily dose of 2-3 grams of chlorella can substantially improve our odds when it comes to saturating our system with that good detoxifying power of chlorophyll. Think of it as cheap insurance.
There are many brands available and they will all say that they are the purest, best, blah, blah, blah. My bet is that they are all basically the same. I have tried several brands and I have not noticed a difference. They all are “broken cell wall” and they are all the strain called Chlorella pyreneidosa. I like a large 1000mg dose per pill. That’s the supplement tip of the day.