Superfoods: The Food and Medicine of the Future

Camu Camu Berry: Vitamin C Sun King

There is no doubt that ascorbic acid [Vitamin C] is required for the synthesis of collagen in the bodies of human beings and other animals. One of the important functions of collagen is its service in strengthening the intercellular cement that holds the cells of the body together in various tissues. It is not unlikely that part of the effectiveness of vitamin C against the common cold, influenza, and other viral diseases can be attributed to this strengthening effect, and in this way preventing or hindering the motion of the virus particles through the tissues and into the cells.

 —Linus Pauling, Vitamin C, the Common Cold, and the Flu

Camu camu (Myrciaria dubia) is a bush native to South American tropical rainforests that produces a fruit containing more vitamin C than any other known botanical source (for comparison: a fresh camu camu berry may contain up to 4 percent vitamin C, whereas a lemon may contain up to 0.5 percent vitamin C). Some estimate that camu camu berries have thirty times as much vitamin C as oranges.

Consider the words of Dr. James Duke, USDA scientist and author of The Green Pharmacy: “I take vitamin C for colds … I prefer to get mine from camu camu, the amazing Amazonian fruit that has the world’s highest vitamin C content.”

Indigenous Amazonian peoples traditionally pick the camu camu berries in season, dry them, and use them medicinally for the rest of the year. This purplish-red berry becomes light beige in color when dried and powdered.

The camu camu berry is an excellent source of calcium, phosphorus, potassium, iron, the amino acids serine, valine, and leucine, as well as small amounts of the vitamins thiamine, riboflavin, and niacin. Camu camu berry is usually available in a dried, powdered form. The powder tastes delicious and tangy. Traditionally, camu camu has been used to:

·        support the immune system,

·           maintain excellent eyesight,

·           create beautiful skin,

·           ward off viral infections,

·           support strong collagen, tendons, and ligaments,

·           decrease inflammation,

·           improve respiratory (lung) health,

·           help maintain optimal clarity of mind in times of stress and anxiety, and

·           especially support the functions of the brain, eyes, heart, liver, and skin.

In a comparative study of hundreds of botanicals, ranked in order of effectiveness for various health conditions, camu camu was placed by Dr. Duke among hundreds of herbs as follows*:

Antimutagenic

#4

Antioxidant

#4

Antiviral

#6

Asthma

#1

Atherosclerosis

#1

Cataracts

#1

Colds

#1

Depression

#2

Edema

#1

Gingivitis/Periodontal disease

#1

Glaucoma

#1

Hepatitis

#1

Infertility

#1

Migraine headaches

#1

Osteoarthritis

#1

Painkiller

#1

Parkinson’s disease

#1

Recommended Dosage

1 level tbsp. (3 grams) of camu camu berry powder per person per day. One can increase dosage with time. Diarrhea symptoms indicate excessive intake.

How to Use Camu Camu Berry Powder

Add one level tbsp. (3 grams) or more to juices, smoothies, raw ice creams, raw desserts, or simply to your drinking water. As a natural vitamin C source, this product may be used in conjunction with MSM powder to rejuvenate collagen.

*Note: This comparative study’s results are not FDA approved. We make no specific claim as to the camu camu berry’s medicinal properties.

Chlorella: Green Pigment of Your Imagination

Chlorella is a single-celled, water-grown algae that consists primarily of a nucleus and a large amount of directly available chlorophyll, a nutrient vital to the health of our bodies. Chlorella is a whole food, as it is extremely rich in vitamins, minerals, amino acids, essential fatty acids, polysaccharides, and a host of other beneficial compounds. Chlorella supports the function of the brain and liver, improves digestion and elimination, helps regenerate the body (especially in cases of degeneration), detoxifies the body, protects against radiation, relieves inflammation, supports healthy weight loss, enhances the immune system, and, overall, accelerates the healing process.

Both scientific documentation and reliable anecdotal reports indicate that chlorella is effective in reducing the symptoms of numerous types of cancers, diabetes, low blood sugar, arthritis, AIDS, candida, pancreatitis, liver cirrhosis, hepatitis, peptic ulcers, viral and bacterial infections, anemia, and multiple sclerosis.

Highest Known Chlorophyll Content

Chlorella gets its name from the rich quantity of chlorophyll it possesses. Chlorella contains more chlorophyll per gram than any other plant. Chlorophyll is one of the greatest food substances for rejuvenating the blood and cleansing the bowels and other elimination systems such as the liver.

Green microalgae are the highest sources of chlorophyll in the plant world. And of all the green algae studied so far, chlorella has the highest, often ranging from 3 to 5 percent pure natural chlorophyll.

Detoxifies the Body and Supports Optimum Liver Function

Chlorella is considered to be a first-class detoxifying agent, capable of removing alcohol from the liver and/or clearing heavy metals, certain pesticides, herbicides, and polychlorbiphenyls (PCBs) from the body’s tissues. In Japan, interest in chlorella has focused largely on this superfood’s ability to remove or neutralize poisonous substances from the body that have accumulated due to environmental pollution and the ingestion of contaminated foods.

The Life Extension Foundation has cited many positive reports about chlorella from Japanese studies conducted after the nuclear catastrophes at Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. In a report to the General Meeting of the Pharmaceutical Society of Japan on an early study in animals, Ichimura (1973) reported that chlorella (8 grams daily) increased the elimination of cadmium, threefold in feces and sevenfold in urine. Other researchers from Japan showed that chlorella helped detoxify uranium and lead.

Numerous research projects in the U.S. and Europe also indicate that chlorella can aid the body in breaking down persistent hydrocarbon and metallic toxins, specifically mercury (which is widely present in the bodies of many people in the form of toxic dental “amalgam” fillings), cadmium, arsenic, lead, DDT, and PCBs.

Chlorophyll also supports the optimum functioning and cleansing of the liver, which is the organ chiefly responsible for the general day-to-day detoxification of the body. A Japanese study showed that taking 4–6 grams of chlorella before consuming alcohol can prevent hangovers 96 percent of the time, even after a night of heavy drinking. Chlorella can also absorb toxins from the intestines, and, combined with its ability to favorably alter the bacterial flora content of the bowels, is able to help relieve chronic constipation and eliminate intestinal gas.

This detoxification of heavy metals and other chemical toxins in the blood will take three to six months, depending on how much chlorella a person is taking.

Immune Support for Whole-Body Rejuvenation

Chlorella extract is well known in the Japanese scientific community as a “biological response modifier.” Studies have indicated that chlorella can provide critical benefits for the health of individuals with suppressed immune systems caused by chronic long-term illness or chemotherapy treatments. Research studies suggest that chlorella accelerates the recovery of developing immune system cells and restores the population of mature white blood cells. As best as we understand the process currently, white blood cells originate in the bone marrow as stem cells. From stem cells, white blood cells continue to multiply and grow as “colony-forming units.” Cells increase in these colonies and mature into a variety of immune cells. In studies, chlorella accelerated the recovery of developing cells in colony-forming units and restored the population of mature white blood cells.

A newly available strain of chlorella contains a significant portion of the blue pigment phycocyanin that helps the body produce more stem cells. As we have seen with AFA blue-green algae and spirulina, when superfoods containing phycocyanin are consumed with superherbs such as reishi, maitake, or chaga mushroom the immune response is significantly improved.

Rats treated with the chemotherapy drug cyclophosphamide showed enhanced resistance against E. coli when given chlorella extract. Chlorella not only accelerated the recovery of white blood cell populations, but also enhanced their ability to respond and accumulate at the site of infection.

Supports the Immune System to Destroy Bacteria, Viruses, and Food-Borne Illnesses

Studies have shown that chlorella can increase the resistance to viral infections and enhance the ability to kill bacteria. For example, superoxide is a powerful weapon that white blood cells use to “blast away” bacteria. Given the same number of immune cells, the level of superoxide generated was one and a half times higher in mice receiving chlorella extract, thus enhancing the “killing ability” of those cells.

Another example: Cytomegalovirus is a herpes-type virus that can cause serious illness in patients treated with immune-suppressing drugs. Mice treated with chlorella extract prior to introduction of this virus survived lethal infection doses. Chlorella extract decreased virus replication in the organs by 58 to 65 percent. The extract increased the activity of gamma interferon, which stimulated natural killer cells to attack the virus.

Listeria monocytogene is a bacteria that has become a national concern due to increasing incidents of its presence in packaged foods. An infection can have lethal consequences for individuals with weakened immune systems. Chlorella extract significantly increased the resistance of mice infected with Listeria monocytogenes, producing a dose-dependent survival rate of 20 to 25 percent, while the control group not receiving chlorella extract had no survivors.

Chlorella Growth Factor

There is also another amazing property of chlorella called the “Chlorella Growth Factor” (CGF), which has baffled scientists throughout the world: chlorella quadruples itself every twenty hours, growing faster than any food crop known to man. When chlorella is ingested by the human body, it dramatically increases the rate of rebuilding and healing in tissues, multiplies the growth rate of the lactobacillus (beneficial bacteria) in the bowel, boosts the immune system, and fights free-radical damage. Chlorella also helps rebuild nerve tissue damage throughout the body and is excellent for treating degenerative brain and nerve disorders. This superfood is being used to help treat patients with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.

Chlorella has been shown to improve immune function in people undergoing chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy. Chlorella increases macrophage activity, activates both T-cells and B-cells, and has shown antitumor effects. In addition, chlorellan, a substance found in chlorella, stimulates interferon production.

—Donald R. Yance, Herbal Medicine, Healing & Cancer

Highest Food Sources of RNA

It was previously believed that sardines were the highest food source of essential, longevity-enhancing RNA. This investigation was prompted when the oldest living American, age 135, was questioned about his diet, and replied that he ate canned sardines and crackers. Eating foods high in RNA/DNA provides material for the repair and production of human RNA/DNA. It is the breakdown of RNA and DNA in the cells that is believed to be a major factor in aging and degenerative diseases.

Research from Japan has shown chlorella pyrenoidosa is the highest-known food source of RNA. Chlorella has twenty times more RNA than sardines do (sardines contain 0.59 percent RNA, chlorella is 10 percent RNA). Bee pollen and royal jelly are also extraordinary sources of RNA and DNA.

Enzymes in Chlorella

Chlorella contains enzymes such as chlorophyllase and pepsin, which are two digestive enzymes. Enzymes perform a number of important functions in the body, especially relating to digestion. Chlorella that is freeze-dried or pasteurized may be lacking the benefit of chlorella’s enzymes.

Causes Proliferation of “Good Bacteria”

Chlorella causes the lactobacilli bacteria in our stomachs to multiply at four times the normal rate. Taken with meals, chlorella helps provide very good digestion and more importantly, better assimilation of nutrients.

High Protein Content

Containing about 60 percent pure digestible protein, chlorella is one of the highest protein sources on the planet—far exceeding that of animal products like beef, chicken, and fish (18 to 30 percent protein).

Extremely Rich in Vitamins and Minerals

Chlorella is a whole food—it contains vitamins C and E, all of the B vitamins (including B12, which in chlorella may or may not be in a useable form for human metabolism), amino acids, folic acid, beta-carotene, lysine, and iodine. Chlorella is also extraordinarily rich in iron and calcium.One tablespoon of chlorella provides 320 percent of the RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) of iron and 120 percent of the RDA of calcium.

Naturally Rich in Essential Fatty Acids

Chlorella contains a greater quantity of fatty acids than either spirulina or wild blue-green. About 20 percent of these fatty acids are the artery-cleansing, omega-3, alpha-linolenic variety; perhaps this is one reason chlorella has been shown to be so effective in reducing cholesterol in the body and preventing atherosclerosis.

—Paul Pitchford, Healing with Whole Foods

How to Consume Chlorella

Chlorella greatly augments healthy digestion and overall digestive tract health. While it is almost impossible to take too much chlorella, it is best to introduce chlorella gradually into one’s diet in order to allow the body to adapt to its deeply regenerative effects, especially on the digestive and intestinal systems.

Three grams per day is a good maintenance dosage of chlorella. With this amount, you will not notice significant changes but your body will get many of the nutrients it must have to function properly, such as amino acids (protein), vital minerals, vitamins, carbohydrates, and enzymes.

A person taking chlorella specifically for mercury detoxification would want to be taking around five to seven grams per day. This dosage is quite common, and at this level one will notice significant changes in digestion, energy, and overall health. One teaspoon of powder is equal to five grams (5,000 mg.)

Some people cannot tolerate chlorella, which might be due to a cellulase insufficiency. If you are unable to tolerate chlorella, it would be wise to consider using a different microalgae (spirulina, AFA blue-green, or marine phytoplankton) or adding a digestive enzyme supplement with cellulase in it to help digest the chlorella.