By VIBRANT BEAUTY
Spirulina, a natural product and a health supplement, normally does not cause any problems to the body. However, it is always best to be on the safe side and stay away from possible spirulina side effects.
So what is spirulina and what does this contain?
The amino acid, phenylalanine, is present in spirulina. People suffering from phenylketonuria, a particular type of metabolic illness, should take care in avoiding spirulina. Patients with phenylketonuria could not process and metabolize phenylalanine—the amino acid, if taken, may build up in their brains and lead to impairment.
Since spirulina is considered a food supplement, its manufacture and quality are not supervised and regulated by the United States Food and Drug Administration. However, it should be noted that spirulina is actually a type of cyanobacterium, which notoriously produces toxins such as microcystins. The US Food and Drug Administration warns that there are no existing regulations and standards ensuring the safety of this dietary supplement.
Aside from people with phenylketonuria, patients suffering from severe allergies to seafood and products such as seaweed should also limit the intake of spirulina. Those with hyperparathyroidism and high fever should also avoid it.
What are the possible side effects of spirulina intake?
One probable consequence is slight fever, because the body needs to burn excess protein from the product. A little dizziness, constipation or stomachache, thirst, and skin itchiness (resulting in slight rashes) may also be experienced.
While such side effects should be avoided, there are actually a number of people who are recommended to consider spirulina. Kids and teens, who fail to eat a balanced diet of vegetables and fruits, are an example. They need the extra vitamins to help them grow fast, and spirulina could help provide these nutrients.
Special patients such as pregnant women and senior citizens are also advised to take spirulina. Aside from needing extra nutrients, pregnant mothers and seniors also have difficulty taking in complete and balanced meals daily.
Athletes and working men and women, who need extra nutrition to sustain their high energy levels, may also take this food supplement. Since spirulina is relatively easy to prepare, busy people will not have to spend extra time concocting nutritious meals.
People with special needs such as sick patients and vegetarians (who need extra sources of nutrition) are also good candidates for spirulina intake.
How can one take spirulina?
Spirulina must only be ingested with water—not with “colored” liquids such as soda, tea, coffee or juice. Soda, alcoholic beverages or caffeine—which could destroy spirulina’s enzymes and nutrients—should not be taken for half an hour after ingesting the food supplement. One must also remember to take at least an extra half liter of water per day.
It does not matter if you take spirulina once or twice daily, so long as you take enough for a day. The recommended dosage for adults is five to ten tablets per day, while children should take three to five tablets daily. If you have special requirements for extra nutrients, please consult your doctor or your pharmacist.
Spirulina side effects are, in fact, easy to avoid if you are careful and well-researched.