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345: Is Spirulina a Superfood? Oura Ring Pros/Cons; Why I am Wearing Teeth Aligners - the GOOD, the BAD & the YUMMY!

On Air with Ella episode 345

345 On Air with Ella cover image

Welcome to the GOOD, the BAD & the YUMMY, where I share one thing I am loving, one thing I am not, and a super simple recipe!



Announcements


OURA ring silver

the BAD - OURA ring health tracker


  • The Oura Ring is a wearable health tracker that monitors sleep, activity, and heart rate variability.

  • It provides detailed insights into sleep quality, including REM and deep sleep stages, and Heart Rate Variability (HRV) monitoring offers insights into stress levels and overall well-being.

  • Supposedly, the Oura Ring accurately predicts your next period and alerts you six days before it starts based on the fluctuations in your body temperature.


What about the bluetooth and EMF?

  • The Oura Ring emits minimal electric and magnetic fields (EMFs) and allows you to enable Airplane Mode to limit contact even further.

  • The limit for SAR (Specific Absorption Rate) for a device such as the Oura Ring is 2.0 W/kg for head and body. The Oura Ring SAR level is 0.0003 W/kg.

  • Additionally, Bluetooth is only active on the Oura Ring for short periods of time, well below 1% of the day. (Data is transmitted more continuously when the ring syncs with the app and during firmware updates.)


So what's my problem with the Oura Ring?

  • Customer service is AWFUL

  • It's a relatively high price point for the ring itself, and then there's the subscription

  • The Oura Ring experience requires an Oura Membership. It costs $5.99/month, or $72/year.

  • The data is interesting, but what are you doing with it?






the GOOD - Spirulina

  • Spirulina is a nutrient-dense superfood with numerous potential health benefits!

  • I use both blue spirulina (powder) and green spirulina (tablets) - I explain in this episode!


Spirulina is a nutrient-dense superfood that offers numerous benefits due to its rich composition of protein, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber. Here are some key benefits related to its macronutrient and micronutrient profile:


Protein Benefits of Spirulina

  • Spirulina is an excellent source of complete, high-quality protein, containing all essential amino acids.

  • The protein in spirulina is highly digestible and has a net protein utilization rate of around 65%, which is better than most plant proteins.


Fiber and Spirulina

  • Spirulina contains a good amount of dietary fiber, which promotes healthy digestion and regular bowel movements.

  • The fiber in spirulina may help regulate blood sugar levels by slowing the absorption of carbohydrates.


Vitamin and Mineral Benefits of Spirulina

  • Spirulina is rich in B vitamins like thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), and pyridoxine (B6), which are essential for energy metabolism and nervous system function.

  • The algae is a rare plant source of vitamin B12, which is important for vegans and vegetarians who don't obtain it from meat.

  • Spirulina provides a good source of iron, which is crucial for red blood cell production and preventing anemia, plus copper and manganese.

  • Spirulina contains high levels of antioxidant vitamins like vitamin E and vitamin A (from beta-carotene), which protect cells from oxidative damage.


Potential Risks of Spirulina:


  1. Blood Thinning: Spirulina may increase the risk of bleeding or bruising by slowing blood clotting, which can be dangerous for people on blood thinners or with bleeding disorders.


  1. Contamination: Some spirulina products may be contaminated with heavy metals, toxins like microcystins, or other harmful compounds if not grown and processed properly. Purchasing from reputable brands is important. I like this one.


  1. Medication Interactions: Spirulina may interact with certain medications like immunosuppressants, thyroid drugs, or diabetes medications.

  2. Digestive Issues: Some people may experience bloating, gas, nausea, or diarrhea when first introducing spirulina into their diet, likely due to its high protein and fiber content. These effects are usually mild and temporary as the body adjusts.


References:


spirulina pesto and pasta

credit:  spirulinagrowco.com.au

the YUMMY: Spirulina Plant Protein Recipes

The key is to start with just a small amount of spirulina powder (1/2-1 tsp) as it has a bold flavor, then adjust to taste. It's a versatile way to add nutrients to dips, dressings, snacks and savory dishes. Here are 10 easy recipes that include spirulina:


1. Spirulina Smoothie Bowl

- Blend together frozen banana, spinach, almond milk, spirulina powder, and your choice of nut butter. Top with fresh fruit, granola, and seeds.


3. Spirulina Energy Bites

- Process dates, nuts, cacao powder, spirulina, and nut butter into a dough. Roll into bites and optionally coat in shredded coconut.


4. Spirulina Pesto  

- Blend basil, garlic, pine nuts, olive oil, parmesan, and 1-2 tsp spirulina powder for a vibrant green pesto to toss with pasta or spread on sandwiches.


5. Spirulina Avocado Toast

- Mash avocado with lemon juice, salt, pepper, and a dash of spirulina powder. Spread over toast and top with sliced radish, sprouts, or everything bagel seasoning.


6. Spirulina Hummus

- Add 1-2 tsp of spirulina powder to your favorite hummus recipe for a nutrient boost and vibrant color.


7. Spirulina Guacamole 

- Stir in a teaspoon of spirulina powder to your guacamole for added nutrients and a striking green hue.


8. Spirulina Salad Dressing

- Whisk together olive oil, vinegar, spirulina powder, garlic, salt and pepper for a flavorful salad dressing.


9. Spirulina Deviled Eggs

- Mix spirulina powder into the egg yolk filling for vibrant green deviled eggs.


10. Spirulina Popcorn Seasoning

- Mix spirulina powder with melted butter or olive oil and toss with popcorn for a savory snack.


Let me know if you try any of these! xx Ella


 

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