The controversial effect of AFA algae
The conclusion first: AFA algae is wrongly said to detoxify the body, protect it or remedy neurological disorders. The most important things about the effect of AFA algae for you at a glance:
- Goods group: They belong to the group of blue-green microalgae. AFA Algae are not medicines and they are not medicines either. Dried, they are traded as a dietary supplement, but cannot replace medical therapy.
- Positive effect: There is none. As a dietary supplement, the dried AFA algae provide only small amounts of vitamins, proteins, and fatty acids.
- Relief or healing: AFA algae are said to alleviate or even heal diseases such as depression, ADHD, and Alzheimer’s. However, this has not been scientifically proven in any way.
- Ingestion/pollutants: If you take AFA algae as a dietary supplement, make sure that they are free of toxic heavy metals and microcystins. AFA algae products are not at all suitable for children, pregnant women, and young mothers.
- Dose: No more than three tablets of 0.5 grams per day are recommended. The costs are between 0.75 and 1.50 euros per day, as health food stores and health food stores charge 25 to 50 euros for 100 tablets.
The origin of AFA algae
AFA algae (Aphanizomenon-Flos-Aquae algae) are freshwater microalgae and belong to the cyanobacteria. They are also popularly known as blue algae. They are not cultivated like other types of algae but harvested wild from mountain lakes. This is the most common reason for using the term “organic” – AFA algae. However, the designation is neither justified nor permitted according to the EU organic regulation.
Dangerous substances in algae can make you ill
In the past decades, the AFA algae have been scientifically examined again and again. As early as the mid-1990s, it was found that numerous preparations based on AFA algae exceeded the tolerable intake levels of toxic microcystins contained therein. The Federal Institute for Risk Assessment even warned in an official statement in 2003 against discontinuing medical therapies and instead taking AFA algae products. The problem is with hazardous substances containing AFA algae.
- Some AFA algae strains produce toxins. They have the property of attacking and damaging the nervous system. In addition, other cyanobacteria can cause contamination, leading to the formation of microcystins. These are carcinogenic and damage the nervous system and the liver.
- After harvesting, AFA algae are dried. However, depending on the time of harvest, the algae contain significant amounts of microcystins. If children take AFA preparations daily, the daily intake set by the WHO may be exceeded. Parents are not aware of this fact, since the leaflet does not give any instructions on how to take it.
- Dealers and manufacturers of the AFA algae preparations assure that they have filtered all harvest batches and checked for the presence of microcystin. It cannot be proven whether filtering completely removes microcystin. Product distributors’ own laboratory analyses should always be viewed critically and in no way ensure that the products are really free of harmful substances.
- AFA Algae are fished out as a natural product. Other small animals are also harvested (e.g. water fleas) or deposited in bird droppings. The feces can contain enteric or coliform bacteria, which are processed and do not lose their danger to the human body during the drying process.