We love a good bedtime snack, especially when it's full of nutrients that can promote sleep. In our newest episode of Plant Based, herbalist and holistic health practitioner Rachelle Robinett explains that spirulina can do just that. Also known as blue-green algae, spirulina was the first plant life on Earth, she says. (A true superfood!)
Technically, spirulina is a bacteria, but don't let that put you off. It's super high in protein—about 70 percent by weight, Robinett says. "It's also one of the few plant foods that are complete protein, which means that it contains all of the essential amino acids that our body needs but can't make," she adds.
One of those essential amino acids is tryptophan, which Robinett explains is a precursor to serotonin (meaning your body needs tryptophan in order to make it), the happy neurotransmitter. It can help boost your mood and calm you down. Serotonin is also the precursor to melatonin, which Robinett says can help you sleep better. Those two chemicals are essential for, what else, a good night's rest.
Downside: Because it's algae, spiriulina tastes a little... fishy. Robinett turns it into a delicious pesto to make it a bit more fun (and palatable) to eat. To get the recipe and learn about all of spirulina's other health benefits, be sure to watch the full video above.
Want more Plant Based? Watch Robinett make this CBD-infused celery juice lemonade, or how to make a gut-healthy salad dressing from medicinal mushrooms.
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