Marine PhytoPlankton and your immune system

As we all continue to navigate the global pandemic around us, many of us are looking for new ways to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe by boosting our immune systems. From vitamin supplements to fad diets, everyone seems to have a different idea about the best ways to stay healthy. But few people seem to realize that beneath the ocean’s surface lie immune-boosting properties in abundance. 

Recent studies have shown that marine phytoplankton may actually have significant health benefits. Phytoplankton is a generic term for single celled marine organisms. If you’ve heard of spirulina, chlorella, blue-green or other types of algae then you have been introduced to marine phytoplankton. 

Marine Phytoplankton Immune Marine Biologist

A hidden world of health benefits

What you may not know is that there are an estimated 20,000 active substances with human health benefits that originate from marine life. And it is phytoplankton that is responsible for synthesizing many valuable chemicals and proteins. Research on marine immunotherapy has discovered bioactive compounds in phytoplankton with anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and other beneficial properties.1 

In the past, research on marine phytoplankton has been, unfortunately, limited. But as interest and research have increasingly shown, its potential health applications cannot be denied. A 2009 study found that some types of phytoplankton have applications as nutraceuticals, therapeuticals, and antiviral agents. Furthermore, its ability to improve overall health is becoming more and more evident.2

Making it work for you

So how can you start incorporating phytoplankton into your daily routine? Interestingly enough, in addition to the variety of marine phytoplankton supplements on the market, the nutrients produced by marine phytoplankton can also typically be found in its predators. Krill, shrimp, and certain fish that feed on phytoplankton tend to be abundant in the same bioactive compounds.3 

Marine Phytoplankton Shimp Cocktail

This suggests that there is immune boosting potential not just in marine phytoplankton, but in other seafood as well. However, to make certain that you are reaping the full benefit of the immune boosting, health enhancing characteristics of marine phytoplankton a dietary supplement may be the best bet.  

We all want to eat a  nutritionally balanced diet, and one that is rich in fish is often a great way to keep healthy and well nourished. While not everyone’s lifestyle choices or preferences allow them to consume seafood, there are other ways to get our essential nutrients. If you are really interested in keeping your immune system in top shape, adding a marine phytoplankton supplement may be exactly what you need.

Making the healthy choice

Health and wellness should be priorities for us all, especially in this unprecedented time, and marine phytoplankton may be a great way to add another layer of defense to your immune system. As the research on marine phytoplankton grows, and we gain a better understanding of its apparent ability to enhance general health, it is clear that adding it to your diet through food or supplements could be extremely beneficial.4 There could not be a more urgent time to start looking after your health, even if you have to look in the unlikeliest of places.

Don’t let social distancing weaken your immune system.

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Plastids of Marine Phytoplankton Produce Bioactive Pigments and Lipids | Marine Drugs, 
Health Applications of Bioactive Compounds from Marine Microalgae | Life Sciences, Science Direct. 
Krill for Human Consumption: Nutritional Value and Potential Health Benefits , Janet C Tou, Nutrition Reviews, Oxford University Press. 

NOTE: The MDPI, Elsevier B.V. or its licensors or contributors. ScienceDirect®, and Oxford University Press and, have not reviewed or approved the above article.