- What is blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
- What brand names are available for blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral?
- Is blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral available as a generic drug?
- Do I need a prescription for blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral?
- What are the side effects of blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral?
- What is the dosage for blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral?
- Is blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral?
What is blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral, and how does it work (mechanism of action)?
Blue-green algae is a natural herbal supplement. Blue-green algae has high amounts of protein, iron, and other minerals and claims have been made that it has beneficial effects on the immune system, inflammation, and against viral infections. Individuals should check with their physicians before using this supplement.
What is the dosage for blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral?
(recommended by suppliers):
- Leukoplakia (white patches and sores on gums inside of cheeks): Take 1 gram by mouth daily for 12 days.
- Blepharospasms (abnormal blinking of eyelids): Take 1500 mg of SBGA (Super Blue-Green Algae) capsules by mouth daily.
Which drugs or supplements interact with blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral?
Blue-green algae may have blood thinning effects and it may increase the risk of bruising and bleeding if combined with blood thinning medications like warfarin (Coumadin), aspirin, clopidogrel (Plavix), and pain medications like naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn), ibuprofen (Motrin), and diclofenac (Voltaren).
Is blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?
There are no adequate studies done on blue-green algae to determine safe and effective use in pregnant women.
What else should I know about blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral?
What preparations of blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral are available?
Blue-green algae are available in tablets, capsule, and powder form. The concentration of blue-green algae may vary from product-to-product due to multiple manufacturers producing various products.
How should I keep blue green algae (Spirulina sp.)-oral stored?
Due to multiple manufacturers making different forms of blue-green algae, storage requirements may vary based on individual manufacturer practices.
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Blue-green algae (Cyanobacteria, Spirulina) is an herbal supplement that contains high amounts of protein, iron, and other minerals and is used for ADHD, PMS, stress, digestive aid, wound healing, and to improve the immune system. Side effects, drug interactions, and pregnancy safety information should be reviewed prior to taking this supplement.
Related Disease Conditions
Diabetes (Type 1 and Type 2)
Diabetes is a chronic condition characterized by high levels of sugar (glucose) in the blood. The two types of diabetes are referred to as type 1 (insulin dependent) and type 2 (non-insulin dependent). Symptoms of diabetes include increased urine output, thirst, hunger, and fatigue. Treatment of diabetes depends on the type.
Obesity and Overweight
Obesity is the state of being well above one's normal weight. A person has traditionally been considered to be obese if they are more than 20% over their ideal weight. That ideal weight must take into account the person's height, age, sex, and build.
Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS)
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a combination of physical and emotional disturbances that occur after a woman ovulates and ends with menstruation. Common PMS symptoms include; depression, irritability, crying, oversensitivity, and mood swings. For some women PMS symptoms can be controlled with natural and home remedies, medications, and lifestyle changes such as exercise, nutrition, and a family and friend support system.
Fatigue can be described in various ways. Sometimes fatigue is described as feeling a lack of energy and motivation (both mental and physical). The causes of fatigue are generally related to a variety of conditions or diseases, for example, anemia, mono, medications, sleep problems, cancer, anxiety, heart disease, and drug abuse.Treatment of fatigue is generally directed toward the condition or disease that is causing the fatigue.
Stress occurs when forces from the outside world impinge on the individual. Stress is a normal part of life. However, over-stress, can be harmful. There is now speculation, as well as some evidence, that points to the abnormal stress responses as being involved in causing various diseases or conditions.
Menstruation (Menstrual Cycle)
Menstruation (menstrual cycle) is also referred to as a "period." When a woman menstruates, the lining of the uterus is shed. This shedding of the uterine linking is the menstrual blood flow. The average menstrual cycle is 28 days. There can be problems with a woman's period, including heavy bleeding, pain, or skipped periods. Causes of these problems may be amenorrhea (lack of a period), menstrual cramps (dysmenorrhea), or abnormal vaginal or uterine bleeding. There are a variety of situations in which a girl or woman should see a doctor about her menstrual cycle.
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD)
Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) is considered a severe form of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). PMDD has also been referred to as late luteal phase dysphoric disorder. The cause of PMDD is unknown. Some of the common symptoms of PMDD (not an inclusive list) include mood swings, bloating, fatigue, headache, irritability, headache, breast tenderness, acne, and hot flashes. Treatment for PMDD is with medication to treat the symptoms of PMDD.
Diabetes Treatment: Medication, Diet, and Insulin
The major goal in treating diabetes is controlling elevated blood sugar without causing abnormally low levels of blood sugar. Type 1 diabetes is treated with: insulin, exercise, and a diabetic diet. Type 2 diabetes is first treated with: weight reduction, a diabetic diet, and exercise. When these measures fail to control the elevated blood sugar, oral medications are used. If oral medications are still insufficient, insulin medications are considered.
Cholesterol (Lowering Your Cholesterol)
High cholesterol and triglyceride levels increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. Getting your cholesterol and triglyceride levels in an optimal range will help protect your heart and blood vessels. Cholesterol management may include lifestyle interventions (diet and exercise) as well as medications to get your total cholesterol, LDL, HDL, and triglycerides in an optimal range.
Menstrual Cramps and PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome) Treatment
Menstrual cramps and premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms include abdominal cramping, bloating, a feeling of fullness, abdominal pain, mood swings, anxiety and more. Treatment for menstrual cramps and premenstrual syndrome (PMS) symptoms include regular sleep, exercise, smoking cessation, diet changes, and OTC or prescription medication depending on the severity of the condition.
Stress Management Techniques
Stress may be considered as any physical, chemical, or emotional factor that causes bodily or mental unrest and that may be a factor in disease causation. Managing stress in our lives is important. Elimination of stress is unrealistic, since stress is a part of normal life. We can however, learn to manage stress through techniques such as exercise, relaxation, meditation, time management, and support systems so that we have control over our stress and its effects on our physical and mental health.
Menstrual cramps (pain in the belly and pelvic area) are experienced by women as a result of menses. Menstrual cramps are not the same as premenstrual syndrome (PMS). Menstrual cramps are common, and may be accompanied by headache, nausea, vomiting, constipation, or diarrhea. Severity of menstrual cramp pain varies from woman to woman. Treatment includes OTC or prescription pain relief medication.
Childhood ADD or ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in Children)
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) causes the following symptoms in children: excessive activity, problems concentrating, and difficulty controlling impulses. There are three types of ADHD: the predominantly inattentive type, the predominantly hyperactive/impulsive type, and the combined (inattentive, hyperactive, and impulsive) type. Stimulant medications are the most common medication used to treat ADHD.
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a psychiatric condition, can develop after any catastrophic life event. Symptoms include nightmares, flashbacks, sweating, rapid heart rate, detachment, amnesia, sleep problems, irritability, and exaggerated startle response. Treatment may involve psychotherapy, group support, and medication.
Adult ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)
About 2%-6% of adults have ADHD, a common behavioral problem. Symptoms include impulsivity, hyperactivity, and inattention. Treatment may involve ADHD education, attending a support group, skills training, and medication.
Stress and Heart Disease
The connection between stress and heart disease is not clear. Stress itself may be a risk factor, or high levels of stress may make risk factors for heart disease worse. The warning signs of stress can be physical, mental, emotional, or behavioral. Reducing stressors in an individuals life not only can lead to a more productive life, but may also decrease the risk for heart disease and causes of heart disease.
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in Teens
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in teens is a disruption of neurocognitive functioning. Genetics contribute to ADHD. Symptoms of ADHD in teens include inattention, hyperactivity/impulsivity, or a combination of these. Treatment may include cognitive behavioral therapy, behavior therapy, medication, or alternative therapies.
Job Stress and Your Health
Early warning signs of job stress include headache, sleep disturbance, difficulty in concentrating, short temper, upset stomach, job dissatisfaction, and low morale. Stress on the job can be damaging to your health in that job stress is the outcome when job demands cannot be met.
Treatment & Diagnosis
Medications & Supplements
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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
REFERENCE: Coastal Health District. Frequently Asked Questions About Blue-Green Algae (Cyanobacteria) and Their Toxins.