Blue spirulina is a blue pigment from a cyanobacterium called Arthrospira platensis. Have you ever wondered about its natural vibrancy and why it’s gaining immense popularity? Then you’re in the right place.
Full of numerous health benefits and an eye-catching visual appeal, Blue spirulina has found its way into a wide variety of culinary creations and health products. This blog post will answer the question “what is blue spirulina?” and go over its health benefits and uses. Keep reading to learn more.
What Is Blue Spirulina?
Blue spirulina is a type of blue-green algae that grows in ponds, lakes, and alkaline water. Also known as phycocyanin, most people know it for its versatility and intense color.
When extracted, it contains a brown pigment called phycocyanin, which gives algae its distinctive dark blue color.
Unlike its green counterpart, Blue spirulina is great for those looking for a more palatable option. This wonderful food is a source of proteins, vitamins, essential minerals, carotenoids, and antioxidants, making it a necessary nutrient for overall health and well-being.
Benefits of Blue Spirulina
Blue spirulina has several benefits, including:
Blue spirulina has compounds that have anti-inflammatory properties. The active component in Blue spirulina is called phycocyanin, which is a source of antioxidant substances that prevents inflammatory signaling molecules from being produced.
These molecules are what causes chronic inflammation in the body. Consuming Blue spirulina regularly will therefore alleviate symptoms that have to do with these chronic inflammatory conditions.
The phycocyanin in Blue spirulina also has powerful antioxidant properties that prevent many health conditions and diseases caused by oxidative stress. These are diseases like heart disease, blood pressure, arthritis, diabetes, and even cancer. Consuming foods that fight oxidative damage helps keep these conditions at bay.
Boosts the Immune System
Thanks to the presence of vitamins and minerals, Blue spirulina helps boost the immune system. Some of its vitamins include vitamins B6, E, and C. It has a high concentration of a pigment called zeaxanthin that reduces the risk of age-related loss of vision and cataracts. The antibacterial properties in Blue spirulina also help in maintaining good oral health by improving immune function.
Removes Heavy Metals
Spirulina can effectively bind heavy metals in the body, making them easier to eliminate. Phycocyanin, the compound that gives spirulina its distinctive blue-green color, also acts as a nitrogen storage molecule.
This nitrogen moiety plays an important role in heavy metal binding. This means that taking spirulina can help detoxify the body from heavy metals.
Can Help You Lose Weight
Blue spirulina is a source of vitamin B, which acts as a great energy booster. If you engage in any kind of physical activity, taking Blue Spirulina can give you the extra boost you need to perform at your best.
You can also burn fat faster, as Blue spirulina contains antioxidants that help minimize exercise-induced oxidative damage from exercise.
Blue Spirulina vs Green Spirulina: What Are the Differences?
Here are the differences between green and blue spirulina:
The very first difference between the two is their color, as their names suggest. Blue spirulina has a blue color, while Green spirulina is green in color. This is because Blue spirulina has a blue pigment known as phycocyanin, while Green spirulina’s color owes to chlorophyll.
Blue spirulina and Green spirulina have many similarities, but they differ in terms of their natural composition. This means that they both possess amazing health benefits since they offer their own array of essential nutrients.
Another main difference between Blue spirulina and Green spirulina is how they’re used. Green spirulina is often used as a dietary supplement, either in the form of powder or tablets. Blue spirulina, on the other hand, is often used in making different culinary items, such as drinks and smoothies.
Blue Spirulina Recipes
Here are some recipes you can try out at home:
Blue Spirulina Smoothie Bowl
- 1 frozen banana
- 1 cup frozen blueberries
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1 tablespoon Blue spirulina powder (you can find it in health food stores)
- Toppings of choice (such as granola, sliced fruits, coconut flakes)
- Blend the frozen banana, frozen blueberries, almond milk, and the blue powder until smooth.
- Pour the mixture into a bowl.
- Top it with your favorite toppings, and enjoy!
Blue Spirulina Lemonade
- 2 cups cold water
- 2 lemons
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
- 1/2 teaspoon Blue spirulina powder
- Ice cubes
- Make lemon juice by squeezing out your two lemons and adding cold water.
- In a pitcher, combine the cold water, lemon juice, maple syrup or honey, and Blue spirulina powder.
- Stir well until the Blue spirulina powder is dissolved.
- Add ice cubes and serve.
Blue Spirulina Energy Balls
- 1 cup dates (pitted)
- 1 cup nuts of your choice (such as almonds or cashews)
- 2 tablespoons Blue spirulina powder
- 2 tablespoons nut butter
- 1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
- Shredded coconut (for coating, optional)
- In a food processor, blend dates, nuts, Blue spirulina powder, nut butter, and honey or maple syrup until well combined.
- Roll the mixture into small balls.
- If desired, roll the energy balls in shredded coconut for an extra touch.
- Refrigerate for 1-2 hours before serving.
Blue Spirulina Chia Pudding
- Chia seeds
- Your choice of milk (almond, coconut, or any plant-based milk)
- A teaspoon of Blue spirulina powder
- In a jar, mix chia seeds, your milk, and the Blue spirulina powder.
- Stir well and let it sit in the refrigerator overnight or for at least a few hours until the chia seeds absorb the liquid and thicken.
- Serve the pudding in individual bowls or jars.
- You can top it with fresh fruits, nuts, and a sprinkle of shredded coconut for a delightful and nutritious dessert or snack.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does Blue spirulina taste like?
Blue spirulina may have a salty taste that some people might refer to as a sulfuric, earthy, or fishy taste. If you’ve been swimming in salt water or the ocean and had water in your mouth, that taste will be similar to Blue spirulina.
This might be due to the fact that Blue spirulina grows in watery environments. People who like strong flavors might find this taste appealing: others may not like it.
Who should not take Blue spirulina?
Although there are multiple benefits of Blue spirulina, its consumption may not be ideal for everyone. People with phenylketonuria (PKU), a metabolic condition, should avoid consuming Blue spirulina due to the amino acid phenylalanine that cannot be broken down.
Additionally, pregnant and breastfeeding women should speak to a healthcare provider before adding regular Spirulina to their diets. Others who should avoid consuming Blue spirulina include those who have bleeding disorders or any autoimmune condition.
The Bottom Line
If you were wondering, “what is Blue Spirulina?” we hope this blog post has helped answer the question. With its various benefits, Blue spirulina can improve your health when incorporated as a supplement or in recipes like pudding and lemonade. So, this summer, try a new blue treat: we hope you enjoy!