Green with Envy
Want to be the person who hardly ever gets sick and always has energy to spare? Tap into the health- boosting powers of spirulina, chlorella, and other green foods— and you will quickly become the envy of family and friends
David Sandoval, author of The Green Food Bible: Could Green Plants Hold the Key to Our Survival?, offers the inside scoop on green food supplements.
One thing just can’t be beat for energy, immunity, gut health, and cleansing— green foods. Spirulina, chlorella, wheat grass, and other powdered gems are concentrated sources of nutrients, each with its own unique mix of vitamins and minerals. We sat down with green foods expert David Sandoval, author of The Green Food Bible: Could Green Plants Hold the Key to Our Survival? and founder of Organic by Nature, to get the inside scoop on buying and using these supplements
BN: What are the most important health benefi ts of green foods? DS: There are endless health benefi ts associated with green foods, both scientifi c- based uses and anecdotal ones. Here are my favorites:
Excellent source of prebiotics Alkalizing eff ect on the body Liver detoxifi cation Blood builder ( for stronger hemoglobin) Energy aid Natural immune support
BN: What are the main diff erences and health benefi ts of green foods, specifi - cally spirulina, chlorella, and grasses? DS: Here are my thoughts on these incredible foods:
SPIRULINA & CHLORELLA
Spirulina is a natural multivitamin, and a vegan source of protein and omega- 3 fatty acids. It’s also rich in phycocyanin, a powerful polyphenolic compound. Chlorella is best for heavy metal detox and tumor suppression. It also promotes healthy bone growth and cellular replication. Both are similar in that they are chlorophyll- rich algae. Both are rich in essential amino acids, low in fat, and high in fi ber and minerals. Chlorophyll is a natural anti- infl ammatory, antioxidant, and wound healer that has been found to aid in normalizing the blood counts of anemic individuals. Both algae contain some vitamin B . Along with the usual vitamin and mineral suspects found in deep green plant foods— B vitamins,
carotenoids, magnesium, and vitamin C— chlorella also contains some potent fl avonoid nutrients, including lutein, which is important for eye health. Chlorella also contains a rare xanthophyll, a type of carotenoid that, like beta- carotene, has vitamin A activity.
BARLEY GRASS & WHEATGRASS
Barley grass and wheatgrass are mineral- rich green vegetables. They help fi ght infl ammation associated with
arthritis and are great for enhancing detoxifi cation. These juices have been used successfully by natural medicine to aid in healing from allergies, arthritis, asthma, chronic fatigue, constipation, skin injuries or infections from fungus or bacteria, and yeast infections. Juice from grass is loaded with chlorophyll, which improves intestinal mobility— the ability of the muscular intestinal wall to move waste out of the body through bowel movements. Most green juice converts who tend toward constipation notice quick relief from this problem. Studies show that green grass juices and other green foods can decrease the absorption of toxic chemicals, such as dioxins, through the walls of the intestine into the body.
BN: What if I already eat lots of veggies— should I still take green supplements? DS: Defi nitely— you simply can’t get benefi cial phytochemicals associated with algae, seaweeds, and grasses from diet alone.
BN: What about matcha ( green tea powder)— is this a green superfood too? DS: Absolutely! Both green tea and matcha are wonderful additions to any diet that is already green to start with. In general, green tea ( and matcha) will be pretty powerful protection against every disease that plagues human beings in First World nations, especially cardiovascular disease, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease.
BN: Can you share a few tips for buying and using these powders? DS: If you’ve never used a green foods powder, start with a green foods blend, and take it on an empty stomach when possible ( this includes with a morning smoothie). Also, consider purchasing products made using low- heat processing, which retain more nutrients than other types of powders.