The Medical Uses of Chlorella, Fucus, Spirulina, Laminaria
From the water itself for drinking to the plants, animals and organisms found in it, humans can benefit immensely from water. Among these organisms are Chlorella, Fucus, Spirulina and Laminaris all of which are water inhabitants. Except Chlorella that grows in fresh water, the other three grow in sea or ocean water that is salty. Here is a look at how these can be of help to us humans medically.
Chlorella is an algae that has been used in making food supplements and medicines. Extracts made from the organism are made into tablets or liquid extracts containing chlorella growth factor. This contains many useful nutrients including amino acids, vitamins, sugars, nucleic acids, peptides and proteins in differing concentrations. Medically, these Chlorella products are used in prevention of cancer, reduction in the side effects of radiation, improving response to flu vaccines, increasing cell counts in people suffering from HIV and cancer, improving immunity, slowing down the aging process and protection against the harmful effects of toxic metals like mercury and lead. Chlorella has also been used in managing gastro-intestinal disorders as it is said to increase good bacteria in the tract.
Fucus is brown algae found in seashores and is known to contain all essential minerals. This makes Fucus a very important source of nutrients and supplements. It has in particular been used in treating iodine deficiency for a very long time. Among the commonest Fucus species is Fucus vesiculosus which has been widely used in the treatment of varying diseases including joint problems, preventing thyroid problems caused by deficiency of iodine, weight loss, detoxification of the body and better metabolism. Among the common side effects associated with Fucus is too much iodine buildup which could lead to thyroid problems.
Spirulina are blue – green algae that grow in sea and salty water lakes and have been used for centuries for their nutritional and health benefits. They are rich in dietary protein, Iron and Vitamin B complex micronutrients. Spirulina has been applied in treating varying medical conditions including diabetes, premenstrual syndrome, precancerous growths and healing wounds. Other uses include in managing stress, fatigue, anxiety, depression, boosting immunity, lowering cholesterol, preventing heart disease and improving metabolism and memory.
Laminaria is seaweed common in Japan and has been used in treating a variety of medical conditions. Traditionally, it has been used as a cervical dilator and in inducing labor thanks to its laxative effects when it comes in contact with water. It is currently used by doctors to dilate the cervix for procedures that require access to the uterus. It is also used to help make labor and delivery easier by dilating the cervix faster. It is rich in iodine and potassium. Other uses of Laminaria include in weight loss, high blood pressure and in countering the effects of radiation treatment. It is also known to prevent cancer.