Benefits of blue-green al­gae

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - STAR SPECIAL -

BLUE-grEEn al­gae (BgA), also known as Aph­a­ni­zomenon flos-aquae (AFA), is a prim­i­tive mi­croal­gae that ex­isted bil­lions of years ago. It grows wild and har­vested in the Up­per Kla­math Lake (Southern Ore­gon) in Amer­ica.

Its pres­ence in the vol­canic area in Up­per Kla­math Lake (Southern Ore­gon) makes BgA a rich source of pro­tein that amounts to as high as 60% to 70%. In ad­di­tion, it also con­tains car­bo­hy­drate and lipids as well as a wide range of vi­ta­mins and min­er­als, mak­ing it a nat­u­ral source of whole­some food.

Apart from the nu­tri­tious as­pect, BgA also has other func­tional in­gre­di­ents. One of them is L-se­lectin li­gand, a com­po­nent known to ben­e­fit health.

In ad­di­tion, BgA also con­sists of four other ac­tive com­po­nents, each play­ing dif­fer­ent roles and de­liv­er­ing dif­fer­ent ef­fects in the hu­man body.

Phy­co­cyanin is a blue pig­ment that pos­sesses strong an­tiox­i­dant prop­er­ties by re­duc­ing free rad­i­cals and in­flam­ma­tion.

Polysac­cha­ride com­plex is a long chain of car­bo­hy­drate that acts as an im­mune sys­tem booster, which helps pre­vent com­mon sick­ness and speeds up re­cov­ery from ill­ness. Chloro­phyll, as a green pig­ment, is in­volved in pho­to­syn­the­sis and has a de­tox­i­fy­ing ef­fect on the body.

What are adult stem cells?

Cells make up the ba­sic build­ing blocks of our body. Stem cells are cells that are un­spe­cialised and carry with them two dis­tin­guish­ing char­ac­ter­is­tics from the rest of the cells:

1) Ca­pa­bil­ity to re­gen­er­ate it­self con­tin­u­ously

2) Un­dif­fer­en­ti­ated cells that can be in­duced to spe­cialise into spe­cific cells

Adult stem cells play a ma­jor role in the nat­u­ral cell heal­ing and main­te­nance of our body sys­tem. There­fore, they are es­pe­cially use­ful for a healthy body.

Why are stem cells im­por­tant?

The age­ing process is ac­com­pa­nied by a pro­gres­sive de­cline in the num­ber of cir­cu­lat­ing stem cells as well as func­tion­al­ity in the body. As the re­gen­er­a­tive ca­pac­ity is de­pend- ent upon stem cells, this can have a detri­men­tal im­pact on our health as age catches up.

Our body is con­tin­u­ously bom­barded by free rad­i­cals that lead to health prob­lems over time. There­fore, we need enough cir­cu­lat­ing adult stem cells to slow down the age­ing process, in­crease the speed of re­cov­ery and help re­pair and re­gen­er­ate new cells.

Who needs AFA?

AFA is suit­able to be con­sumed at any age for var­i­ous out­comes – the young for op­ti­mal health; the mid­dle-aged to main­tain an en­er­getic lifestyle and de­lay signs of age­ing; and the el­derly to re­lieve symp­toms of health prob­lems due to age­ing and to help im­prove the heal­ing process due to in­jury.

Ref­er­ence

> raggi C., Ber­ardi A.C., Messenchy­mal stem cells, ag­ing and re­gen­er­a­tive medicine, Mus­cles Lig­a­ments Ten­dons J., 2(3): 239-242, 2012. Ac­cessed 11/6/13 http://www.ncbi.nlm. nih.gov/pmc/ar­ti­cles/PMC3666525/

> Jensen gS, et.al., Mo­bi­liza­tion of hu­man CD34+ CD133+ and CD34+ CD133 - stem cells in vivo by con­sump­tion of an ex­tract from Aph­a­ni­zomenon flos-aquae--re­lated to mod­u­la­tion of CXCr4 ex­pres­sion by an L-se­lectin li­gand?, Car­dio­vasc revasc Med, 8(3):189202, 2007.

> Dra­peau C., Mo­bi­liza­tion of bone mar­row stem cells with StemEn­hance(r) im­proves mus­cle re­gen­er­a­tion in car­diotoxin-in­duced mus­cle in­jury, cell cy­cle, 9(9):18191823;2010.

> Benedetti S. et.al., Anti-ox­i­dant prop­er­ties of a novel phy­co­cyanin ex­tract from the bluegreen al­gae Aph­a­ni­zomenon flos-aquae, Life Sciences, 2353-2362,2004.

(KKLIU 1277/2013)

BGA com­prises four ac­tive com­po­nents play­ing dif­fer­ent roles and de­liv­er­ing dif­fer­ent ef­fects in the hu­man body.

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