Last updated: October 17, 2020

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Do you struggle to stay energised throughout the day? Do you suffer from diabetes or high cholesterol? Do you want to add a high-quality nutritional supplement to your daily diet? If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions, spirulina may be just the product for you.

Beyond its incredible nutritional composition, this blue-green micro-algae provides unparalleled health benefits. Spirulina is a valuable source of proteins, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals. Its energizing, antioxidant and stimulating properties make it a great addition to any diet.

Key Facts

  • Spirulina is considered a superfood because it has powerful nutritional functions, and also because it improves health and helps prevent some diseases.
  • Spirulina is revitalising, detoxifying and antioxidant. You can find it in powder, tablet or capsule form.
  • Spirulina is suitable for vegans and those with gluten-intolerance.

Our Selection: The Best Spirulina Supplements on the UK Market

There are many different spirulina brands and methods of ingestion available on the market, so picking out the right one can be overwhelming. We’ve picked out a handful of the very best options on the British market, to make the process easier for you.

The Best Spirulina Powder Supplement

Sevenhills Wholefoods Organic Spirulina Powder 250g. Is the most and highest rated supplement of this kind on Amazon.co.uk. with a wopping 4.5 out of 5 stars with almost 2000 reviews and very well priced at around £7, Sevenhills supplements are very well known in the UK for their great products.

Sevenhills Wholefoods Organic Spirulina Powder, Spirulina is a microscopic algae found in warm climates, grown by photosynthesis in fresh water, and contains more vital nutrients than almost any other food. Their spirulina is grown in freshwater ponds in the South China Sea in an environmentally pristine area far from industrial activity, under strict conditions of purity where conditions are constantly observed. The algae is harvested and dried in a special spray technique that preserves the nutrients and during which no cell capable of producing BMAA can survive. Spirulina powder can be added to juices and smoothies.

The Best Spirulina Tablets

If you just can’t bear the taste of spirulina powder, don’t worry! These tablets from NOW Foods are a fantastic option to get a daily dose of this nutrient-rich superfood. Each tablet contains 1000 mg of USDA-certified organic spirulina. The tablets are also non-GMO, vegan, soy free and sugar free.

Now Foods’ tablets are packaged in the US by a family owned and operated company that has been around in 1968. The product is GMP Quality Assured, which means every part of the manufacturing process has been tested for potency, purity and stability. You can feel confident that you’re getting a safe, high-quality product with this brand.

The Best Spirulina Made in the UK

The Healthy Tree Co. is a small team of superfoods from Oxfordshire, and have the highest possible standards when it comes to quality. Unlike most companies, they test every batch of organic spirulina at their advanced UK laboratory. This ensures that the finished product you receive is always completely pure, with no exceptions.

The Health Tree´s spirulina algae grows organically on a small, remote island, surrounded by pristine natural forests and woodland. The tropical climate and rural location are perfect, with consistently high temperatures, year-round sunshine and no neighbouring agriculture.

The Best Spirulina-Chlorella Mix

AAVALABS Spirulina and Chlorella Mix offer you a daily dose of their Spirulina and Chlorella complex that delivers up to 1800mg per daily dose of pure algae. Better yet, this “green” powder can be experienced by mixing it with smoothies, shakes or even baked goods, making it enjoyable for kids and adults.

The mission at AAVALABS is to infuse their Nordic values of purity & freshness into the world. To do this, they combine the innate wisdom of nature with the power of modern technology, sourcing the highest quality ingredients and making them as bioavailable as they possibly can.

Shopping Guide: Everything You Should Know About Spirulina

Spirulina’s amazing potential to improve people’s health is no longer in doubt. Still, you should have all the information about this product so you can be sure this superfood is the right supplement for you. We hope this guide will answer all of your questions regarding spirulina supplements.

Spirulina

Studies have shown that spirulina can reduce cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood.
(Source: Marinav: 36864940/ 123rf.com)

What exactly is spirulina?

Spirulina is usually referred to as an algae since it grows in water, has the ability to photosynthesise and form bluish-green filaments when it’s grouped together.

Despite this, the supplement we call spirulina is actually a spiral-shaped photosynthetic cyanobacteria. Upon growing and achieving the density needed, it’s dried and pulverised into a powder that can be easily consumed. After pulverisation, it can also be made into capsules or tablets.

What makes spirulina so healthy?

This superfood boasts an amazing nutritional profile including:

  • 57-60% of spirulina’s dry weight forms proteins, including all the essential amino acids. Our body can’t synthesise the essential amino acids, so they need to be obtained from food or supplements.
  • About 20% complex carbohydrates.
  • Between 5% and 7% fat, with a significant amount of omega-3 and omega-6.
  • Provitamin A (beta-carotene), vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6 and B9 (folic acid), and vitamin E (tocopherol).
  • Iron, magnesium, zinc, manganese, selenium, potassium, calcium and sodium.
foco

Were you aware that a historic UNESCO publication in 1969 referred to spirulina as “seaweed three times more nutritious than a good steak”?

What are other benefits of spirulina?

Spirulina offers many other benefits that go beyond its nutritional makeup: this superfood can improve your health and well-being. The following list shows some additional properties of spirulina:

  • Energising and revitalising
  • Immuno-stimulant
  • Antioxidant
  • Detoxifying
  • Satiating and appetite suppressant
  • Hypoglycemic (reduction in fasting and post-meal glucose levels)

Why is everyone starting to talk about spirulina?

Spirulina isn’t a new phenomenon; it’s been used by indigenous peoples for hundreds of years. Nonetheless, Western health professionals and researchers have recently become more interested in spirulina for its health properties.

One of the first written records indicating the health benefits of spirulina comes from 1974, when it was declared “the best food for the future” at the UN World Food Conference.

Spirulina

Many studies have proven spirulina’s effects, and it’s gradually become one of the most popular supplements in the world.
(Source: Chepko: 82271552/ 123rf.com)

How can spirulina help fight fatigue?

Spirulina is packed with minerals and vitamins. Many of them contribute to our body’s metabolic reactions that convert nutrients into energy.

Fatigue is often the consequence of a vitamin deficiency, so this superfood can ensure the body has the needed nutrient reserves to form energy.

This micro-algae is also recommended for preventing or treating anaemia. Spirulina contains a large amount of iron and folate, both key nutrients in the production of red blood cells in the bone marrow.

Is spirulina essential for vegans?

No matter how amazing a supplement might be, don’t forget that nothing can substitute a balanced diet. Spirulina is a great ally for vegans, as it can help them increase their nutritional intake. Still, a vegan’s overall diet should be carefully planned and supervised by a nutritional expert.

That said, this micro-algae is a great source of protein for vegans. That’s because spirulina is made up of proteins with high biological value. They contain the essential amino acids that your body can’t produce on its own. Spirulina is also rich in iron, folate and zinc, nutrients that are commonly lacking in vegan diets.

Vegans can significantly improve their nutrition when they combine spirulina with a balanced diet.

Is spirulina a good source of vitamin B12?

You may have seen various spirulina supplement labels claiming that the product has a significant amount of vitamin B12. Some science writers even point to algae as a plant source of this nutrient. But the truth is that this statement conveys misinformation.

Spirulina contains a vitamin B12 analogue, which is an inactive form of the vitamin. That means that it doesn’t fulfill the usual role of active vitamin B12.

Many vegans are led to believe that they can get their vitamin B12 needs using spirulina (or another algae), so be careful not to fall into this trap!

Is spirulina useful for lower cholesterol or triglycerides?

The hypolipidemic quality of spirulina is definitely one of the most impressive benefits this supplement provides. The omega-3, omega-6 and soluble fibers present in spirulina are responsible for this phenomenon.

There is much scientific proof supporting the effectiveness of spirulina supplements in reducing overall cholesterol, LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and blood triglycerides. The effect is a decreased risk of developing cardiovascular disease, which is the world’s leading cause of death, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

What are the antioxidant properties of spirulina?

Beta-carotene, spirulina chlorophyll and vitamin E all present antioxidant properties, which means they block free radicals that cause oxidative damage to cells.

Cardiovascular diseases, fibromyalgia, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases (like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and dementia) are pathologies with oxidative stress. That’s why spirulina supplements are crucial to prevent such conditions from developing.

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Were you aware that oxidative stress speeds up the aging process? Supplementing with spirulina can help you age healthily.

Are there any risks from spirulina use?

Spirulina supplements are generally considered to be safe for the healthy adult population. They are unlikely to result in any adverse reactions and no drug interactions have been discovered thus far.

Nonetheless, the following groups should be sure to speak with their doctor prior to taking spirulina to prevent any potential risk or complication.

  • Children
  • Pregnant and lactating women
  • People with renal, hepatic or hormonal diseases
  • Any individual on chronic medication

What happens if I exceed the recommended dose of spirulina?

The recommended dose of spirulina powder is usually 2 to 3 grams daily, which is equivalent to 4 to 6 tablets each day.

Some of the nutrients present in spirulina, such as iron or vitamin E, can accumulate in the body and result in illnesses due to excess, which is why there are strict dosage recommendations to respect.

Romina CeruttiNutritionist and Dietitian

“Excess iron is associated with gastrointestinal symptoms and heart problems, while hypervitaminosis E can lead to alterations in blood clotting.”

How can spirulina promote weight loss?

Spirulina has a satiating and appetite-suppressing quality. Put this effect to use by taking a spirulina supplement with water 15 to 30 minutes prior to lunch and dinner.

When it mixes with water, the spirulina’s mucilages form gel in the stomach. These gels can stay for several hours in the digestive tract, prolonging the feeling of satiety and helping you to control your appetite.

What types of spirulina supplements are available?

Spirulina supplements can be divided into two primary groups: powder and tablets. Let’s take a look at the characteristics, pros and cons of each.

Spirulina

Superfoods are celebrities on websites and social media accounts that promote a healthy lifestyle.
(Source: Gojda: 28875574/ 123rf.com)

Spirulina Powder

Spirulina powder is stored in bags or jars whose sizes range from 100 to 1,000 grams. The usual recommendation is to consume 2 to 3 grams each day, mixed with your favorite drinks or foods, such as water, juice, shakes, smoothies, dressings and soups.

If you prefer spirulina in powder form, you should be sure to try it first. The taste is off-putting for some.

Spirulina Tablets

Tablet or capsule supplements are made from spirulina powder mixed with a small amount of magnesium stearate, hydroxypropyl methylcellulose or silica. The capsules have very little taste and should be swallowed with plenty of water. This form is especially easy to store and transport.

The calorie content found in tablets and capsules is minimal. Its nutritional composition presents no significant difference from spirulina powder. One slight difference is that tablets and capsules often require more digestive work than powder does.

If you don’t like the taste of spirulina powder, then definitely go for capsules.

Powder Tablets
Dose 2 to 3 grams each day 4 to 6 units each day
Taste Strong, unique Soft
Colour  Intense bluish-green Greenish
Digestion Faster and more efficient Requires more digestive work
Versatility Very versatile, adapts to multiple culinary preparations Can only be ingested in one way
Conservation It should be shielded from light and humidity to avoid alteration of its components Easier
Purity 100% spirulina High quality tablets can reach 99% spirulina
Price More affordable More costly

Shopping Criteria

Once you’ve made up your mind that spirulina is a product worth trying, there are a handful of factors you should take into account when choosing the specific product for your needs.

Taste

As we mentioned, spirulina’s intense and distinct taste is very present in the powder form. If you don’t like the taste, try the tablets or capsules.

If this is your first time taking spirulina, try buying a small package of no more than 100 grams to see if you like the taste.

Convenience

In general, tablets and capsules are more convenient to ingest, store and transport. Spirulina powder, meanwhile, needs to be mixed with water or other liquids for consumption.

Price

In order to compare the cost of various supplements, we suggest you divide the product price by the number of doses found in the package. Spirulina powder is usually proportionally cheaper than tablets.

Certifications

Spirulina should always be produced ecologically and with special care. It can easily get contaminated with toxic and heavy metals like lead, arsenic, mercury or cadmium if these things are present in the culture medium.

Vegans should also be sure that tablet excipients and capsule materials are 100% of vegetable origin.

Presence of Gluten, Lactose and Allergens

Spirulina is free of all these substances and won’t contain any of them, unless contamination occurred during processing or packaging.

Summary

We have now introduced you to the many benefits and special properties of spirulina; the various kinds of supplements available on the UK market and the characteristics of each one. We hope that this information will help you make the very best decision for your health.

If you found this guide useful, please share it and help us spread awareness of the advantages of spirulina supplements! Thanks!

(Source of featured image: Maddlen: 29370380/ 123rf.com)

Why you can trust me?

Ava has specialized in medical journalism and not only writes about the human body, but also knows her way around food supplements. She also studied sports science in college.