Chlorella, also known as Bulgarian Green Algae, Clorela, Freshwater Green Algae, and Seaweed, among various other regional names, is essentially single-celled green algae. It is believed that it was originally produced as a protein source for people who could not afford the conventional, more expensive protein foods. Considered an important nutrient in the modern times, offering much more than protein, the name of the algae is taken from 'chloros' the Greek word for 'green' and the Latin suffix 'ella' which means 'small'.
When the algae is dried, it has about 45% protein content, in addition to 10% minerals and vitamins, 20% fat, 5% fiber and 20% carbohydrates. Over the years, the algae have emerged as an important source of nutrition for the human body. While it is true that harvest of the algae is difficult as it is a single-celled organism, methods are now being employed to cultivate it in artificial ponds so that more people can make the most of the various chlorella benefits.
Chlorella: A Food Source
The Bulgarian Green Algae were first viewed as a promising primary food during the 1940s and 50s, when fears of an uncontrollable population boom had gripped the world. It was believed that the algae would be very helpful in case of a world hunger crisis and would provide high quality food and nutrition at a very low cost. Institutions started to study the algae and while it was soon discovered that it would be very difficult to mass-produce it, the many nutritional benefits of the plant could not be ignored. It was touted as one of the most beneficial natural nutrients and in today's times, companies promote the 'super food' effects of the algae.
Although Chlorella is not as popular today as it was in the 1940s, it is still sold and consumed in various places as a beneficial and helpful nutrient.
Chlorella is a very rich source of protein, amino acids and vitamin B. The algae are high in beta carotene and this makes them a powerful antioxidant. The plant also detoxifies the body by pulling the toxins from the bloodstream. It cleanses the organs and purifies the blood.
The plant is also considered a safe and natural weight loss aid. Studies have revealed that its consumption helps control hunger pangs and increases the body's rate of metabolism. Chlorella boosts the immune system and promotes healthy functionality of various systems of the body.
In case there are toxins like pesticides and/or metals like mercury present in the blood stream, chlorella can effectively suck them out, making the system healthy once again. Patients suffering from kidney problems have also reportedly benefited from the algae. In addition, it is used as a natural remedy for skin infections and hair problems.
Studies have revealed that patients suffering from chronic health problems like hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol levels and certain heart conditions tend to benefit from daily use of chlorella.
In certain cancers as well, Seaweed has shown its positive effects.
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