(Spirulina maxima/Spirulina spp.)
History and Folklore
Spirulina is a bluegreen algae that naturally occurs in most lakes and ponds. Yet, this amazing simple organism can even withstand extreme conditions of saline volcanic lakes. Although it is a recent addition to the nutritional supplement menu of Westerners, Native people in Central America, Asia and Africa have long reaped the benefits of this 'superfood'. Spirulina, so named because of the spiral form of this one-celled organism, really packs a phenomenal amount of nutrients into its strange shape. It is extremely rich in amino acids, the building blocks of protein, and many vitamins. In particular, it is one of the richest non-animal sources of vitamin B12 (usually found in dairy products and liver meat).
Spirulina has not yet been researched sufficiently to make specific medical recommendations. It does however show great promise as a nutritional supplement to boost the immune system. There has been a good response in HIV patients and studies suggest that it can help protect against tumour growth. Spirulina can supplement a diet that is deficient in proteins and helps to re-establish healthy intestinal flora where this has been destroyed by the use of antibiotics, birth control pills or radiation and chemotherapy. Preliminary studies also suggest a hepatoprotective effect in cases of chronic hepatitis, which may help prevent cirrhosis of the liver. Animal studies have shown certain anti-allergic properties which prevented the release of histamines and thus reduced typical allergy symptoms such as runny nose etc. In one study, children, born in Chernobyl who suffered from bone marrow damage, made significant improvements after having been given Spirulina for 6 weeks, compared to the control group, which showed no improvement. Spirulina shows a lot of promise, but there is always a danger of praising a newly discovered substance so highly that it becomes victim of its own popularity. As a result such substances often become discredited and illegalised because they can't live up to all the hype - even though they may still be highly beneficial. Spirulina is a great nutritional supplement, but not a cure-all.
There are no magical uses associated with Spirulina, but it may be used as a general tonic to help build Chi energy.
Plants nourish and feed us, add spice to our life, bestow health and beauty, scent and colour and brighten our days. They mediate love, hope and gratitude; they clothe and cleanse us, they heal and soothe our bodies, minds and souls. They touch every aspect of our existence, from our daily sustenance to the air we breathe, to the keys to other dimensions. They are the alchemists that turn sunlight into the green force of life, continuously revolving, restoring, rebirthing through the cycles of time. They truly are the greatest gift of nature, yet also the one we most take for granted.
Star Child's range of botanicals derives from many regions and traditions of the world. We supply only the best quality herbs, using organically grown and sustainably harvested sources if available. The greater the demand for organic products the more readily they will become available. Your choice to buy and our commitment to supply organic herbs is part of the driving force that sows the seeds for a greener, healthier future.
There are dozens of ways in which herbs can be used. Many culinary herbs not only impart a great flavour but also have subtle effect on the digestive process. Other herbs are more medicinal than culinary and can be used as remedies, based on the wisdom of age old traditional plant knowledge. For more detailed information on the different types of preparations that can be made with herbs, please refer to the BOTANICALS USAGE section.
We support the notion of taking responsibility for one's own well being and thus strive to make all herbs available for use at your own discretion. It should be noted however, that not all herbs are safe to use in all circumstances. Special cautions may apply when suffering from certain medical conditions, when taking synthetic prescription drugs and during pregnancy. Research and familiarize yourself with any herb you intend to use and make sure you are aware of all special cautions that may apply. The information given here is based on thousands of years of traditional use. It is intended for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace a visit to a medical professional where this is necessary.
If symptoms persist or re-occur, or if you are suffering from a serious medical condition, or if you are presently taking prescription drugs, we recommend that you consult a qualified doctor or practitioner before attempting to help yourself. Look for a practitioner/doctor who you can trust and who is prepared to explore natural health alternatives with you. Pregnancy is a very special time. If chosen wisely herbs can give tremendous support throughout the entire process. However, due to the vulnerability and sensitivity of the unborn child it is especially important to make sure that the herbs you are using are safe. (This also applies during the time of breast-feeding as all substances ingested by the mother are processed and passed on with the mother's milk). Many herbs may be useful during the latter stages of pregnancy or during labour, but could be dangerous during the first few months. Inform yourself - don't risk regret.
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