Proteins in Spirulina – The building blocks of life
The protein content of spirulina varies between 50% and 70% of its dry weight, depending on growing conditions. These levels are quite exceptional!! The best sources of vegetable protein achieve only half these levels; for example, soya flour contains “only” 35% crude protein. And red meat? It’s about 20 to 30%. It’s also one of the BEST protein for athletes!
These proteins are biologically complete, which means they provide all eight essential amino acids (Isoleucine, Leucine, Lysine, Methionine, Phenylalanine, Threonine, Tryptophane and Valine) in the proper ratios and 10 of the 12 non essentials (Alanine, Arginine, Aspartic Acid, Cystine, Glutamic Acid, Glycine, Histidine, Proline, Serine, Tyrosine) Most plant foods are not complete proteins because they usually lack one or more amino acids.
Unlike all the vegetables or other microorganisms proposed as protein sources, spirulina cells wall do not have cellulose walls, but a relatively fragile envelope of murein (Polysacharride). This explains the very high digestibility of its proteins (83-90% in ordinary dried spirulina).
Thus spirulina requires no cooking or special treatment to increase the availability of its proteins.
Most of the time people eat only a small quantity of spirulina, a few grams only, so usually, it’s not an important source of protein. But if you’re looking to boost your protein intake with a clean source, spirulina is the way to go.
Spirulina has also been known to increase energy. It may also be useful in helping diabetics to control their food cravings, which would result in decreased insulin intake. It also has been used to help with weight loss/treat obesity, attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder, hay fever, stress, anxiety, fatigue, depression, and premenstrual syndrome. It may also help with cholesterol, nursing mother, metal detox, and anemia. As little as 5 grams per day can have great health benefits, so don’t wait and start taking spirulina today!