A new study finds Chlorella, a unicellular green alga, may increase maximal oxygen uptake (VO2 max) as well as nutrient levels in individuals whom are micronutrient-deficient.
34 male college students participated in this recent study. Participants were split into two groups, one group received a Chlorella supplement and the other group received a placebo. Participants daily food consumption was assessed before the trail began and it was observed that their intake of vitamins and minerals fell below the recommended nutrient requirements for the following nutrients: Vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, Vitamin C, Potassium, Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc and Manganese. Participants were found to have Sodium, Protein, and Fat Intakes above the nutrient demand. It was also found that participant’s energy intake was below the nutrient demand. The study lasted 4 weeks.
Maximal oxygen uptake (VO2 max) rose significantly in the group supplementing with Chlorella. Additionally a 20% increase in the sufficiency rate of Niacin, Vitamin K, Vitamin D, Vitamin B2, and Iron was seen in the Chlorella supplementation group. Before the trial researchers found that maximal oxygen uptake was negatively correlated with the participant’s serum Vitamin B2 levels. Prior research found lifestyle modifications like regular exercise and dietary changes caused higher Vitamin B2 needs. Researchers concluded that increased aerobic capacity (a higher maximal oxygen uptake) caused a person to metabolize more Vitamin B2, a significantly negative relationship between VO2 max and Serum Vitamin B2 levels.
Chlorella is considered to be a potential food source since it is high in vitamins, minerals, chlorophyll, dietary fiber, and protein.
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