USE: Chlorella is a type of algae that grows in fresh water. The whole plant is used to make nutritional supplements and medicine. As a medicine, chlorella is used for preventing cancer, reducing radiation treatment side effects, stimulating the immune system, improving response to flu vaccine, increasing white blood cell counts (especially in people with HIV infection or cancer), preventing colds, protecting the body against toxic metals such as lead and mercury, and slowing the aging process.
Chlorella is also used to increase “good” bacteria in the intestine in order to improve digestion and to help treat ulcers, colitis, Crohn's disease, and diverticulosis.
Some people also use chlorella for the prevention of stress-related ulcers, treatment of constipation, bad breath, and hypertension. It is also used as an antioxidant, to reduce cholesterol, to increase energy, to detoxify the body, and as a source of magnesium to promote mental health, relieve premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and reduce asthma attacks. It is also often used for fibromyalgia.
SOURCE: Most of the chlorella that is available is grown in Japan or Taiwan. It is processed and made into tablets and liquid extracts. Chlorella Can be bought in powder form or pills.
Be aware that chlorella products can vary significantly depending on the way the crop used to make them was cultivated, harvested, and processed. Scientists have found that dried preparation of chlorella can contain from 7% to 88% protein, 6% to 38% carbohydrate, and 7% to 75% fat.
Chlorella is POSSIBLY SAFE when used short-term (up to 2 months). The most common side effects include diarrhea, nausea, gas (flatulence), green discoloration of the stools, and stomach cramping, especially in the first week of use. More serious reactions including asthma and other dangerous breathing problems. Chlorella can cause skin to become extra sensitive to the sun. Wear sunblock outside, especially if you are light-skinned. Chlorella can contain iodine, therefore it might cause an allergic reaction in people sensitive to iodine. Chlorella might cause the immune system to become more active, and there is a concern that this could increase the symptoms of autoimmune diseases. If you have one of these conditions, it’s best to avoid using chlorella. Always check with your doctor before taking any supplements.
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