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Christine Dreher, Nutritionist, Herbalist, & author of "The Cleanse Cookbook" founder of TransformyourHealth.com
Christine Dreher, Nutritionist, Herbalist, and author of
 "The Cleanse Cookbook"

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Nutrient-Dense Super Foods
By Christine Dreher, C.C.N, C.C.H.


Nutrient-dense super foods can have a profound therapeutic effect on health and are recommended during and after cleansing. One of the advantages of using super foods is that you can get the benefit of multiple servings of vegetables in a single serving. I recommend at least five servings of vegetables a day.

The following is a brief summary of the most popular super foods and their benefits. I have focused on the super foods that are high in protein and are highly recommended during and after cleansing. There are many other super foods that I have not included. Please see the Perfect Food favorite super green food formula.

Super Green Foods: Algae

Algae are one of nature's most primitive foods---they're millions of years old. The most common types include spirulina, chlorella and blue green algae. I also call these algae the "Super Green Foods" (a group that also includes the wheat grasses and other cereal grasses). I take a wide-spectrum Super Green Food powder that includes spirulina, chlorella, blue green algae and other Super Green Foods. I prefer a powdered or capsule form because the high-heat process used to make most (not all) tablets can oxidize some of the nutrients. (Algae love to grow in murky water, so check to see where the algae were harvested to make sure the water source is not in a polluted area.) Caution: Super Green Foods (including the algae types) can be cleansing to the body, so I suggest starting in moderation and building slowly to ensure that cleansing reactions do not occur.

Super Green Foods are high in antioxidants, carotenoids, selenium, zinc and some vitamin C. Because they are whole foods, they are much more easily absorbed by the body (more bio-available) than isolated vitamins or supplements. Their protein is 95% assimilable, gram for gram, with all the essential amino acids in balance. Super Green Foods have a higher biological value (a measure that determines how well nutrients, especially protein, are absorbed in the body) than any other source of vegetable protein. They also contain more than 2,000 enzymes and are also very good for helping to balance pH levels in the body.

The benefits of Super Green Foods seem to surpass even their nutrient composition---whether this is due to their bio-availability in the body, their high vibrational energy levels or some other unknown reason. Spirulina and blue green algae can enhance the immune system by stimulating greater B-Cell production. (B-Cells are white blood cells in the bone marrow that are the parents of five classes of antibodies made in the body.) Spirulina and blue green algae boost the overall function of the immune system, help increase the production of macrophages that eat pathogens in the body, and help increase the production of "NK" cells (natural killer cells) that kill bad cells in the body (cytoxins), especially cancer cells. Chlorella helps increase T-4 cell production, which enhances immune system function and may even support the function of the thymus gland (which also produces T-Cells for the immune system).

Spirulina is a Super Green Food that is grown in both ocean and alkaline waters. It is a complete protein that is highly digestible and works well with the pancreas. It is a recommended Super Green Food for hypoglycemia and chronic fatigue. Spirulina specializes in giving the body more physical energy. Because it provides energy, some cleansers will experience a "racy feeling" when they take it by itself. This can be remedied by mixing it with other types of Super Green Foods.

Blue green algae is a phyto-plankton with high amounts of digestible protein and enzymes. It is rich in vitamin B-12 and other B-Complex vitamins and has an abundance of beta carotene, fiber, chlorophyll and chelated minerals. It also has the highest amount of vitamin E of the algae family. It is a good source of gamma linoleic acid (GLA), an essential fatty acid that has been shown to have a beneficial effect in the treatment of cardiovascular disease and PMS. Blue green algae specializes in giving more mental clarity and enhancing mental and nervous functions. Because it is the most potent of the algae family, dosages are much smaller. Blue green algae has a positive effect on the hypothalamus, pineal and pituitary glands. The only commercial source for blue green algae is Klamath Lake, which is very alkaline and contains volcanic ash (a mineral-rich soil).

Chlorella is the most alkaline of the algae family. Chlorella is a one-celled algae grown as a super food. Chlorella is a complete protein, high in amino acids, beta carotene, minerals and all of the B vitamins. It also contains one of the highest concentrations of chlorophyll in the plant kingdom (other than wheat grass). Chlorophyll is recommended for iron-deficient types of anemia. Chlorella has an extremely beneficial effect on the health of the bowel and can stimulate peristaltic activity, help detoxify the colon, and promote the growth of helpful bacteria. It can eliminate heavy metals from the body because it is high in fiber and high in cellulose. Cellulose binds to heavy metals in the body, including lead, cadmium and mercury, and these heavy metals are then removed from the body. When eaten on a regular basis, chlorella helps to strengthen liver function, provides an increase in sustained energy and has a positive effect
on the immune system. Chlorella can also protect against atherosclerosis because it is high in essential fatty acids and can reduce LDL cholesterol levels.

Super Green Foods: Cereal Grasses

Many Super Green Food products include the cereal grasses in their formulas. Cereal grasses include wheat grass, alfalfa, barley and kamut. They are best used in their non-pasteurized form. They can be taken as a fresh juice or in powdered or capsule form. Again, I recommend staying away from tablets unless you have checked the processing method for heat stabilization of nutrients. It is best to use small amounts of the cereal grasses regularly, rather than large amounts less often.

Barley grass contains powerful antioxidants, including vitamins C and E, carotenoids, selenium and SOD (an antioxidant created internally by the body). It is helpful in restoring the liver and is an excellent food for those with anemia.

Wheat grass contains 25% protein, is very bio-available for the body and has a balanced amino acid profile. People who are allergic to wheat can use wheat grass because it does not contain gluten. It is also a good source for the antioxidant S.O.D. (an antioxidant produced internally by the body), helps pull lead and cadmium out of the body and helps pull toxins out of the lymph nodes. It is a powerhouse of vitamins, minerals and chlorophyll (containing up to 70% chlorophyll). It is an overall cleanser and rebuilder for the body.

Other Super Foods

Nutritional yeast are colonies of tiny, one-celled plants grown specifically for human consumption. Their taste is a good indication of their quality – the better their taste the better the quality. They are a great source of B-vitamins (all except B-12, though recently B-12 has been added). They are abundant in protein (50% protein) and have a good balance of essential amino acids. They tend to chelate, bond and reduce the levels of heavy metals in the body, including lead, mercury and uranium. They are also high in niacin, which detoxifies the body by releasing fat-stored toxins. (Niacin is also good for mood imbalances and mental disorders). Nutritional yeast also offers protection against common pollutants and the side effects of prescription drugs. Nutritional yeast should not be confused with Brewer's Yeast or Baker's Yeast. Nutritional yeast taste better than Brewer's Yeast and can be used as a seasoning for foods or added to smoothies. Nutritional yeast does not aggravate candida yeast growth like Baker's Yeast does because it does not contain live yeast cells.

Bees make bee pollen by gathering the male reproductive parts of flower pollen. Bee pollen contains 56 essential nutrients for humans. It is high in minerals, especially in calcium and magnesium. It contains 25% to 50% protein, 15% healthy fats (including lecithin and essential fatty acids) and is high in natural lithium (which is good for bi-polar disorders). Bee pollen is considered to be a high-energy food for the body and is rapidly absorbed and utilized by the body. It also strengthens immune system function, especially spleen function, and can help with allergies.

 

Note: The content provided in this article is intended for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to take the place of professional medical advice. You are encouraged to consult with your medical health care provider regarding any health concern or health-related condition you may have.

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