When we talk about supplements we immediately think about pre workouts or protein powders. But supplements can be classed as anything that SUPPLEMENTS a healthy diet. Here at pH Nutrition we focus on food first. Additionally there are some "supplements" that are actually foods - such as the one we are going to discuss now.
Spirulina is a single-celled freshwater micro-algae that compared to any other plant, has the highest concentration of antioxidants in the world, the highest concentration of beta carotene in the world as well as boosting the good bacteria in your gut. In addition to this it has over 40 vitamins and minerals despite having only one calorie per serving. Wallop! Now this is surely worthy of super food status.
Regardless of your what training you perform, getting your nutrition on point is crucial. As people are coming away from the traditional gym model of training specific body parts and more into full body workouts, you need support for ALL energy systems. Thats right - alactic PCr, anaerobic and aerobic system are all stressed during this type of training.
Spirulina contains the highest known quality of chlorophyll found in a nature. Chlorophyll is sometimes called `green blood" due to it having a chemical structure very similar to haemoglobin, and because of these properties, it can carry oxygen around in the blood and increase your red blood cell count. Wanting to improve your conditioning, aerobic capacity and endurance? Then these are the areas you have to target. Spirulina also contains high levels of b-vitamins and iron, which are essential for energy production via the aerobic pathways.
During exercise your body can become acidic due to the build up of hydrogen ions (in addition to lactate), which leads to fatigue and the inability to perform high intensity actions. The good news is Spirulina is highly alkaline. Adding this into your nutrition plan alongside lots of colourful vegetables and fruits will help balance your acid/alkaline ratios. The result – you can push harder for longer during MET-CONS or that hill climb at the end of the ride.
Weightlifting sessions require fast, powerful contractions alongside good neural activation and mental focus. Yep you guessed it, spirulina provides an abundance of vitamins, minerals and amino acids that are crucial In the process of muscular contraction and increasing brain function.
Performance is only one side of the coin, recovery is paramount to making gainz in any sport. Spirulina is 60% protein with these proteins having a high biologically value meaning they provide all eight essential amino acids in the proper ratios. It also provides a dose of omega-3 fatty acids, which in conjunction with all the antioxidants, will boost recovery and lower DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). Basically allowing you to walk down the stairs the day after doing death by squats!!
If you are vegetarian then spirulina is an awesome way to get additional protein and nutrients into your diet. You can take spirulina in tablet or powder form. The powder form can taste a little funky when just mixed with water so best to add to smoothies or shakes.
Here is a great tip for smoothies
Combine 1 tsp spirulina powder with 12 oz lime juice and freezing the mixture in ice cube trays for a healthy boost. Add to your smoothie and wallop – super-food boost done.