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Top Trends and Benefits of Chlorella – The Complete Protein
Last updated: June-21,2021

Top Trends and Benefits of Chlorella – The Complete Protein

Discussed for a long time as a superfood, researchers are finally realizing the potential of chlorella – nutrient-dense freshwater algae. Scientists first began analyzing chlorella after World War II because they believed it had impressive nutritional values and was viewed as a source of vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats like omega-3s.[i] Today, chlorella is consumed by the general populace in the form of dietary supplements.

Here’s a look at what chlorella is, the essential nutrients it is loaded with, health benefits, and market trends.

What is Chlorella?

Chlorella is a popular variety of algae and is found to be a potent detoxification agent. Native to Japan and Taiwan, it is a genus of thirteen species of single-celled green algae that belong to the “Chlorophyta” category.[ii] Research suggests that chlorella may bond with heavy metals in our body, potentially helping minimize them.

Since chlorella has a rigid cell wall that is difficult for humans to digest (in its natural form), it is generally consumed in the form of a supplement. As a supplement, chlorella can be taken in the form of an extract, tablet, capsule, or powder and can be added to a variety of beverage recipes (smoothies, juices, etc.).[iii]

Chlorella Supplement Facts: Nutritional Content of Chlorella

Chlorella-based supplements are found to have various health benefits, thanks to the ingredient’s nutritional properties. Chlorella has found to be a good source of proteins, amino acids, vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids.[iv]

Chlorella is typically rich in: 

  • Vitamin A
  • Zinc
  • Iron
  • Phosphorus
  • Magnesium
  • Niacin
  • Carotenoids
  • Thiamine (B1)
  • Riboflavin (B2)
  • Folate (B9)
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin B12

Is Chlorella a Complete Protein?

To answer this question, it is first important to understand what a “complete protein” means. A complete protein, also referred to as a whole protein, can be any protein source that consists of an adequate proportion of the nine essential amino acids that are deemed necessary for humans. The body cannot naturally produce these amino acids independently, so we look at other food sources to get them.

Just like eggs, dairy, fish, meat, quinoa, buckwheat, hempseed, and soybeans, chlorella is also found to be a complete protein because it contains all the nine essential amino acids (according to Harvard Health Publishing).[v] [vi] [vii] Chlorella may also contain up to 70% dry weight protein and can work as a great protein source for those on a plant-based diet or that consumer segment looking for a protein boost.[viii]

What are the Key Health Benefits of Chlorella?

The synergistic relationship between the multiple nutrients and antioxidant compounds found in chlorella could nutritionally support your consumers’ health.

Here’s looking at some of the main health benefits of chlorella supplements:[ix]

  1. Found to help reduce harmful metals
    The human body is exposed to harmful toxins because heavy metals may enter it through diets and environmental factors. Scientific research suggests that chlorella binds heavy metals and can help reduce them in the body.

  2. Shown to support immune health
    Chlorella has been found to promote white blood cells in the body, which are a critical part of a healthy functioning immune system.

  3. Acts as an antioxidant
    Some studies suggest that chlorella helps fight oxidative stress. Moreover, chlorella contains several antioxidant compounds like beta-carotene, lutein, vitamin C, chlorophyll, and lycopene.

  4. May help promote eye health
    Carotenoids like lutein and zeaxanthin, present in chlorella, can nutritionally support eye health.

An Overview of the Chlorella Market and Key Trends to Look Forward to

As an ingredient, the chlorella market is expected to thrive at a CAGR of 10.25% between 2020 and 2025, according to Mordor Intelligence industry report.

The ever-increasing demand for super greens in the form of dietary supplements is no surprise, given the range of benefits they offer. According to reports, microalgae and super greens like chlorella present a massive market opportunity, with a protein yield of 4 to 15 tons per hectare in a year.[x] This number is far bigger than the yield for wheat, legumes, and soybeans.

Apart from the various health benefits mentioned above, the top industry drivers include: [xi]

  • Increased awareness around and focus on health, wellbeing, and physical fitness
  • The increasing adoption of chlorella powder as a sports nutrition supplement
  • The rising demand for plant-based proteins, vegan protein, and organic supplement products
  • The ability of chlorella to be cultivated without freshwater and pesticides, making it easy to grow
The only challenge in this space is the relatively higher production cost (chlorella requires carbonated water to grow).

How We Can Help You Manufacture Superior Chlorella Supplements

Are you contemplating packing a super green punch with a superlative supplement product loaded with the goodness of chlorella?

At NutraScience Labs, we understand the supplement market and help brand owners like you stay ahead of the curve with our high-quality supplement contract manufacturing services. We offer world-class chlorella powder and tablet production facilities along with a variety of complementary solutions including formulation, flavoring, labeling, packaging, and order fulfillment.

Our flavoring capabilities allow us to mask the natural smell and taste of chlorella and deliver a great-tasting supplement product that your customers will fall in love with!

Call 855-492-7388 to speak to one of our production specialists or request a free quote for more information.


References:

[i] https://www.webmd.com/diet/chlorella-health-benefits

[ii] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chlorella

[iii] https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/benefits-of-chlorella

[iv] https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320067

[v] https://www.piedmont.org/living-better/what-is-a-complete-protein

[vi] https://www.everydayhealth.com/diet-nutrition/incomplete-vs-complete-protein-whats-the-difference/

[vii] https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/getting-your-protein-from-plants

[viii] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5387034/

[ix] https://rootd.com/blogs/vitamins-minerals-101/the-nutritional-benefits-of-super-greens

[x] https://www.greenqueen.com.hk/the-sustainable-superfood-big-players-say-microalgae-is-the-future-game-changer/

[xi] https://www.mordorintelligence.com/industry-reports/chlorella-ingredients-market

June 21st, 2021

About the Author:

 
Gene Bruno

Gene Bruno, MS, MHS, RH(AHG) - Mr. Bruno possesses over 40 years of dietary supplement industry experience. With a Master's degree in nutrition and a second Master's degree in herbal medicine, he has a proven track record of formulating innovative, evidence-based dietary supplements. Mr. Bruno currently serves as both the Senior Director of Product Innovation at Twinlab Corporation and Professor of Nutraceutical Science at Huntington University of Health Sciences.