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Fat Loss & Performance Benefits of Raw Spirulina (food not powder) – Thomas DeLauer…I want you to forget everything that you have ever heard about spirulina. I want you to forget everything that you know. See, most of what you have heard about spirulina talks about it in a supplement form. Now that’s all fine and dandy, okay? It’s not bad in its supplement form, you still get the chlorophyll side of things, you still get the detoxification process, but what I want to talk about today is spirulina in its raw food form. I’m talking literally like eating algae. I mean, not literally going to the pond and scraping algae off and eating it, but essentially eating spirulina in its raw state, where it can elicit some pretty darn powerful effects.
Now you’re probably thinking it’s going to taste absolutely terrible but when you hear me out and I reference some of those studies that show you exactly how much fat loss can occur and how much in the way of performance increase you can expect, you’re going to absolutely be blown away.
The study that I want to reference was published in the Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. It took a look at the effects of spirulina supplementation in exercise in nine moderately trained males. So these are people that have done a little bit of exercise but they’re not super athletes.
These subjects were recreational runners that had trained for at least a year and they trained for at least a couple times per week, usually 45 minutes per session. Now each of these subjects received either spirulina or a placebo for about four weeks, and each subject ended up running on a treadmill for an intensity that was about 70 to 75% of their VO2 max and they did this for about two hours and then again 95% of their VO2 max all the way to exhaustion.
Now what they ultimately found was absolutely crazy. Researchers ended up finding that the time to fatigue after the two hour run was significantly longer after spirulina supplementation, 68 minutes versus 79 minutes in the spirulina group. Now what’s even more impressive was that ingestion of spirulina also ended up decreasing carb oxidation by 10.3% and increased fat oxidation by 10.9% during the two hour run. What that means is that the body used less carbs and burned more fat by a significant degree just by having this algae in the mix.
Now furthermore something that is known as thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances, yes, I know it’s a mouthful, but we’ll refer to it as T-bars, those levels increased after exercise after the placebo group but not the spirulina group. Now to give you some context, T-bars are byproducts of what’s called lipid peroxidation. So spirulina supplementation ended up weakening the exercise-induced increase in lipid peroxidation. I know I sound crazy but all that really means is that spirulina was able to clean up the efficiency of fat utilization, making it a lot easier for the body to use fat and a little bit more difficult for the body to use carbs.
Now these increases in performance that we talked about can happen for a multitude of reasons, but the main one is the fact that raw algae form spirulina contains something known as phycocyanins. See what these phycocyanins do is exactly what we talked about in that study. They help the body utilize more fat and a little bit less carbs. They help the body preserve more in the way of carbohydrates and use more in the way of fats.
1) Spirulina in Clinical Practice: Evidence-Based Human Applications. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3136577/
2) Hypolipidemic, Antioxidant and Antiinflammatory Activities of Microalgae Spirulina. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2907180/
3) Miczke A , et al. (n.d.). Effects of spirulina consumption on body weight, blood pressure, and endothelial function in overweight hypertensive Caucasians: a double-blind, pl… – PubMed – NCBI. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26813468
4) Kalafati M , et al. (n.d.). Ergogenic and antioxidant effects of spirulina supplementation in humans. – PubMed – NCBI. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20010119
5) Ergogenic and Antioxidant Effects of Spirulina Supplementation in Humans. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.academia.edu/24334111/Ergogenic_and_Antioxidant_Effects_of_Spirulina_Supplementation_in_Humans