5 Super Micro-Plants to Include in Your Diet
There are a few plants in Nature that are extremely concentrated with vitamins and minerals surpassing even kale and broccoli. Although micro-plants are related to dark leafy vegetables, they provide a higher level of nutrients than other foods. These micro-plants consist of blue-green algae, chlorella, spirulina, wheat grass, and barley grass. They were the very beginning source of life for this planet and they continue to nourish us well into the future.
Micro-plants come in many forms and colors, harvested both from the sea and dry land, and nutritionally each one is an excellent source of two important phytochemicals, chlorophyll and lycopene. These super powerful nutrients support your body’s ability to detoxify heavy metals, pesticides, and other toxins, plus they are loaded with nutrients to boost your immunity to disease. Micro-plants, commercially known as Green Foods, contain a concentrated combination of phytochemicals, vitamins, minerals, bioflavanoids, proteins, amino acids, essential fatty acids, enzymes, coenzymes, and fiber. This means a whole lot of nutrition in small amounts of food. Dr. Richard Schulze, author of Get Well, refers to micro-plants as Nature’s blood transfusion.
It may be a bit confusing to discern which micro-plant is right for you to take, but don’t worry, there are products on the market that combine these Superfoods into one formula making it easy to stir into fresh juice and drink your nutrients. Individually, the more common micro-plants sold in natural foods stores include:
Next: 5 Best Micro-Plants
1. Blue-green algae (Cyanophyta): one of the first life forms, scientists have found 3.5 billion years of earth’s existence encoded in the RNA/DNA (nucleic acids) of these primitive organisms. Presently available in loose powder or capsule form, blue-green algae contains the highest amounts of beta-carotene, and nucleic acids than any plant or animal food. Actually, blue-green algae are composed of hundreds of types of algae, spirulina, aphanizomenon and microcystis being a few.
2. Chlorella (Chlorophyta): is a single cell freshwater green micro-algae that is the Superfood of choice for over 10 million people worldwide. The first known form of plant life with a true nucleus, it has survived for 2.5 billion years because of its extremely tough outer cell wall and its ability to quadruple in quantity every 20 hours, making it the fastest growing plant on earth! NASA believes it to be the ideal food for long-term space travel and colonization. It is useful for removing heavy metals, pesticides, and other toxic carcinogens from the body. It contains less protein and beta-carotene than Spirulina with twice the nucleic acid and chlorophyll. It’s cleansing and rejuvenating properties are considered to fight aging, Alzheimer’s, sciatica, palsy, seizures, multiple sclerosis, and general nervous system issues.
Related: The Blue-Green Algae Debate
Next: More Beneficial Micro-Plants
3. Spirulina: a microscopic spiral shaped blue-green algae, native to shallow brackish lakes and also known as a cyanobacteria. Esteemed as a Superfood for centuries by people inhabiting the regions surrounding Mexico’s Lake Texcoco and Africa’s Lake Chad, Lake Nakura and Lake Rudolf. It is one of the most heavily researched, nutritious, well-rounded foods on earth being one of the single-celled plants of the blue-green algae family. Spirulina provides more than 100 vitamins and minerals, is 60 percent digestible vegetable protein, with high concentrates of Beta Carotene, Antioxidants, B Vitamins, Iron and Chlorophyll. It’s also a rare food source of GLA fatty acids.
4. Wheat grass: a variety of grass similar to barley, oats and rye, it is grown in fields across America, but the wheatgrass referred to here is grown indoors in trays for approximately ten days and then pressed into fresh juice. The tray-grown grass is used primarily for therapeutic purposes. The sixty-day-old field grown grasses, available in dehydrated powder or tablets, are used primarily as nutritional supplements. Wheatgrass juice is made from sprouting wheat berries, and is very high in chlorophyll. The chlorophyll helps to cleanse the body, neutralize toxins, slow the aging process, and prevent cancer. Wheat grass juice is also effective when applied as an external poultice for burns, poison oak rash and wounds.
5. Barley grass: Barley grass is another green grass that is high in chlorophyll. The young green leaves of barley absorb crucial nutrients from the soil. When barley leaves are 12-14 inches high, they contain vitamins, minerals, and proteins necessary for the human diet, plus chlorophyll. These necessities are easily assimilated throughout the digestive tract, giving your body instant access to vital nutrients. Green barley leaves contain a multitude of enzymes, which supply the spark that starts the essential chemical reactions our bodies need to live.
Next: Are they safe?
These micro-plants are well known by scientists as nutritious and safe to eat. With over thirty years of international scientific research, and thousands of published peer-reviewed papers that document their safety and nutritional and therapeutic health benefits, micro-plants should be a part of everyone’s daily diet. Scientific research continues to investigate each one of these amazing foods, so new discoveries are always forthcoming.
For your present needs there are quality “green” powder drinks that are a combination of all the listed micro-plants, plus fruits, vegetables, sprouted grains and probiotics. Makers of the leading “green drinks” claim that one to two tablespoons of this concentrated powder in water or a smoothie drink will provide you with the equivalent of five to six servings of vegetables. Check the label for ingredients and nutritional breakdown.
Excerpted from The Everything Superfoods Book, by Delia Quigley, with Brierley E.Wright, R.D.