Botanical: Chlorella pyrenoidosa
Family: Chlorellaceae (green micro-algae)
Chlorella is the world's highest-known source of chlorophyll, and it is also one of the most nutritious substances on earth. Loaded with vitamins, important minerals and nucleic acid, this green algae is truly a gift of nature that is virtually a complete food. Cracked-cell Chlorella is used to improve digestion, purify the blood, enhance immune function and possibly even slow down the ageing process.
The information presented herein by Herbal Extracts Plus is intended for educational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.
Chlorella is a tiny, single-celled, water-grown alga that dates back to the pre-Cambrian period, and this microscopic species of green algae possesses distinct biological activities that should ensure its place among the better-known algae. Chlorella has survived for two billion years, because its protective outer shell has sheltered its genetic makeup, and it is also one of the most efficient foods, simply because of the way it utilizes sunshine (as demonstrated by its high chlorophyll content and rapid ability to reproduce). Stanford Research Institute demonstrated that Chlorella (when growing in warm, sunny, shallow conditions) could convert twenty percent of solar energy into a plant, which, when dried, contained fifty percent protein. Chlorella was among the first algae to be cultivated for food supplement purposes. Industrial production of Chlorella began in Japan shortly after World War Two.
Chlorella was discovered by a Dutch microbiologist in 1890 and studied as a potential protein source by German scientists, but it wasn't until after the Second World War that the reality of food shortages, combined with the expectation of a population boom that led to further exploration of
the alga as a rich source of amino acids, protein, minerals, vitamins, dietary fiber and a wide range of antioxidants, bioactive substances and chlorophylls, etc. Chlorella's nutrients are tightly encased within its strong protective cellulose walls; thus, this sea vegetable (sometime called
requires factory processing (must be pulverized-blasted) in order for the nutrients to be bio-available for the body to readily absorb; thus, cracked-cell Chlorella is considered superior for therapeutic use. NASA even
studied it with a view to feeding it to astronauts, and perhaps growing it on space stations.
Chlorella has the highest chlorophyll content of any known plant, giving Chlorella its characteristic deep green color. The name Chlorella is derived from the Greek, chloros, meaning "green" and the Latin, ella, meaning "small." The botanical specific, pyrenoidosa, refers to the presence of a prominent pyrenoid (carbon compound that typically stores starch) within the Chlorella chloroplast. This species has long been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Numerous ongoing studies have indicated the possibility of almost miraculous applications for this unicellular alga. Some of Chlorella's constituents include a rich source of tryptophan, proteins, vitamins A, C, E, K1 and all the B-vitamins, rare trace minerals, carbohydrates, chlorophyll, cellulose, amino acids and nucleic acids.
Chlorella is said to stimulate and normalize an underactive bowel and thereby assist in the treatment of constipation. The high chlorophyll content is thought to detoxify the body by promoting the growth of healthy bacteria in the bowel that promote colon health and keep the bowel clean. Disease causing bacteria find it difficult to live in the presence of chlorophyll. Chlorella is said to be helpful in cases of ulcerative colitis.
Further cleansing the body of toxins, the tough cellulose membrane of Chlorella that is not digested binds to heavy metals and eliminates them from the body. Chlorella pyrenoidosa has been used medicinally as a chelatory agent, for example, to extract mercury and other heavy metals from the body.
With regard to slowing the ageing process, exciting studies have noted that Chlorella possesses a nucleotide-peptide complex, which is mostly composed of nucleic acid derivatives and produced during the intense photosynthesis that enable Chlorella to grow at such a rapid rate. This factor appears to promote accelerated growth and enhance RNA and DNA functions. The nucleic acids help to repair damaged genetic material in human cells and may possibly retard the ageing process.
Chlorella is said to cleanse the bloodstream, enabling the blood to circulate freely and carry wastes from bodily tissues, thereby also strengthening the immune system. When all of our bodies' systems are functioning well, we are able to eliminate poisons, repair damage, combat colds and flu and ward off viruses and disease.
Chlorella acts as an immuno-stimulant and can help to strengthen the immune system. It apparently stimulates strong immune-enhancing effects by inducing interferon production, thereby enhancing natural killer(NK) cells to fight the invasion of unhealthy cells that can cause serious ailments. This concept was further demonstrated in 2012 research at Korea's Yonsei University, when a small clinical trial found tha Chlorella supplementation increased
the activity of Natural Killer (NK) cells by about 10% (NK cells are said to play an important role in our resistance against many pathogens). In addition, levels of interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma) and interleukin-1beta (IL-1beta) significantly increased as well (IFN-gamma is vital for innate and adaptive immunity against viral and bacterial infections, while IL-1beta is said to play an important role in the inflammatory response).
By nourishing the liver, Chlorella is said to help promote healthy liver function, and its ability to eliminate toxins in the liver further protects it from malfunctions. Chlorella is also said to support and maintain healthy blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels, which may also boost liver metabolism.
Chlorophyll-rich foods have been shown to stop bacterial growth, counteract yeast and fungi and detoxify the body of drugs and carcinogens, and because cholorophyll supports the liver, it is also believed to counteract the toxic effects of modern western dietary habits.
Because Chlorella contains such a high chlorophyll content, it is thought to be effective in counteracting bad breath and body odor. The herb also helps to decrease urine and fecal odors due to incontinence.
Chlorella is one of the few edible species of water-grown algae, and since it is virtually a perfect food, it provides nutrition and protein, especially for people who cannot or who choose not to eat meat.
Clinical studies conducted by researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University Medical College demonstrated that Chlorella pyrenoidosa has the ability to reduce high blood pressure and lower serum cholesterol levels.
Chlorella Herbal Supplement is not recommended for pregnant or nursing women. The herb may increase some people's sensitivity to sunlight or sunburn. Those who take warfarin or other anti-coagulant meds should not use chlorella, since it contains vitamin K1 (an aid to blood clotting).