Chlorella vs Spirulina
What's the difference? Which one is right for me?
While chlorella and spirulina look & taste alike and have very similar nutritional profiles and health benefits, there are a number of differentiators that will help determine which one is a better fit for your lifestyle.
Chlorella and spirulina are both amazing whole foods that will supplement your diet in many ways, particularly on vegan and vegetarian diets. Both are low in fats, carbohydrates and sugars but high in protein, antioxidants, iron, omega-3s, vitamin B, vitamin A, essential amino acids (all 9 of the essential amino acids your body can't make on its own) and other micronutrients. Benefits of both chlorella and spirulina include aiding in weight loss, eliminating constipation & improving gut health, reducing blood pressure/cholesterol and preventing iron deficiency in pregnant women.
Chlorella contains the highest amount of chlorophyll of any known plant, resulting in its deep dark green colour. Chlorophyll is a natural deodorant, eliminating bad breath and body odour, and has anti-inflammatory properties.
Chlorella is well known for its detoxification properties, acting as a natural chelator to detox the body of heavy metals and cleansing the liver and digestive tract. Anyone who has been to the dentist, eaten seafood, or taken modern medicine has a certain level of heavy metals that have accumulated in the body.
Chlorella also contains Chlorella Growth Factor (CGF), which repairs nerve tissue damage, boosts immune system function, and promotes increased energy. CGF contains DNA and RNA, promoting cellular regeneration and anti-aging properties.
Chlorella has a rigid cell wall, that is difficult to digest on its own. However, chlorella on the market has been 'cracked' using pressure to allow for optimal absorption of nutrients without impacting their quality and properties.
There are two popular 'strains' of Chlorella: Chlorella Pyrenoidosa and Chlorella Vulgaris. Chlorella pyrenoidosa is more potent, and has higher amounts of chlorophyll and Chlorella Growth Factor. Soleil only carries Chlorella Pyrenoidosa products.
Spirulina platensis, a blue-green algae, is touted as one of the original 'King of Superfoods'. It contains 70% protein, one of the highest protein profiles for plant foods, making it a perfect supplement option for vegans and vegetarians.
Spirulina also contains phycocyanin, a unique antioxidant that helps with improving brain function and boosting the immune system. It also contains Gamma linoleic acid (GLA), which is difficult to find in natural foods, and is known for its anti-inflammatory benefits.
Unlike chlorella, spirulina has an easily digestible cell wall and is very easy for the body to digest, and is slightly milder in taste than chlorella.
What is the difference?
Chlorella is higher than spirulina in zinc, iron, magnesium, vitamin B2, calories, fat, and omega-3 fatty acids. Chlorella also contains more chlorophyll, making it appear a darker green. The unique Chlorella Growth Factor promotes anti-aging.
Spirulina contains 10 percent more protein than chlorella, as well as more copper and thiamine, or vitamin B1. Spirulina has more antioxidants which are found to be anti-cancer and better for improved brain function.
Spirulina is particularly good for energy boosts because of how easily digestible it is (no cell wall), making it an instant source of vitamins and protein. Chlorella, on the other hand, has one of the strongest cell walls in the plant kingdom. It digests very slowly, allowing its high chlorophyll content to detoxify your body.
Although both of these algae are extremely nutrient-dense with only minor differences, chlorella has a slight nutritional advantage, with its higher levels of vitamins and fatty acids. Both are great additions to any diet, but since they may interact differently with your body depending on your needs, it's a matter of preference which one you add to your morning smoothie.
The good news? You don’t have to choose between the two, and the benefits go hand in hand when consumed together. Enjoy their superpowers in your smoothies, desserts, mixed in to your water or even in tablet form.