Health Benefits Of Spirulina 

The health benefits of spirulina are undeniable. Spirulina is hailed as a superfood that promotes body and brain health.  This blue-green “miracle” algae grows naturally in oceans and salty lakes in subtropical climates.

Health Benefits Of Spirulina – Abundant Nutrients For The Body

Spirulina is rich in nutrients, some of which aren’t found in the average daily vitamin. According to the FDA, the health benefits of Spirulina include significant amounts of calcium, niacin, potassium, magnesium, B vitamins and iron.  Spirulina is a great source of B complex vitamins, beta-carotene, vitamin E, manganese, zinc, copper, iron, selenium and antioxidants.  It also has essential amino acids (compounds that are the building blocks of proteins).  In fact, protein makes up about 60 to 70 percent of Spirulina’s dry weight.

Health Benefits Of Spirulina – An Antioxidant Powerhouse

One of the health benefits of Spirulina comes from its antioxidant properties. Spirulina protects our cells by warding off inflammation and other dis-eases in the body.  Spirulina has been shown to positively reduce the risk of heart disease by lowering “the bad” LDL cholesterol and triglycerides in the body while promoting HDL “the good” cholesterol.  In higher doses, spirulina could reduce blood pressure.

Health Benefits Of Spirulina – It’s Full Of Protein

Anemia is a fairly common aliment which can lead to fatigue due to a reduction in hemoglobin or red blood cells in the blood.  When one’s diet is supplemented with spirulina, it has been documented that hemoglobin content of red blood cells increase.

Spirulina has 4 grams of protein in a single tablespoon making it a more concentrated source of protein than red meat and only 20 calories.  With a high concentration of bio-available iron it is excellent during pregnancy and for those with anemia as it will not cause constipation.  The health benefits of Spirulina are compounding in the body as the proteins and nutrients are bioavailable and easily absorbed.

Health Benefits Of Spirulina – Detox The Body

The health benefits of Spirulina include its ability to detoxify the body. It is great at cleansing the body of heavy metals by binding to them and removing them from the body.  Evidence suggests that it can bind to radioactive isotopes and may be useful for radioactivity exposure or radiation therapy.  A combination of zinc and Spirulina may help the body clear arsenic in people whose drinking water has unusually high levels, according to the National Institute of Health (NIH).

Health Benefits Of Spirulina – Prevent What Ails You

Many people promote Spirulina as a treatment for a range of metabolism and heart health issues, including weight loss, diabetes and high cholesterol, according to the NIH.  The health benefits of Spirulina help a range of eclectic health problems, including premenstrual symptoms and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s disease), according to the NIH.  People also recommend Spirulina as an aid for various mental and emotional disorders, including anxiety, stress, depression and attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Health Benefits Of Spirulina – It’s Nontoxic

Toxicological studies of the effects of spirulina consumption on humans and animals, including feeding as much as 800 mg/kg, and replacing up to 60% of protein intake with spirulina, have shown no toxic effects.  Fertility, teratogenicity, peri- and postnatal, and multigenerational studies on animals also have found no adverse effects from spirulina consumption.

Doctors consider Spirulina to be safe in general, especially in light of its long history as a food.  Spirulina may become contaminated with toxic metals, harmful bacteria and microcystins — toxins produced from some algae —if it is grown in unsafe conditions.  Be sure to buy Spirulina from a trusted source and always buy organic when possible.

Health Benefits Of Spirulina – Get Some Today

Spirulina is available in tablet, flake and powder form.  Adding a tablespoon a day to your fresh green juice or to 8 ounces of water will kill the sugar/carb cravings you have and keep you full for hours.  For those that want to reap the benefits of this powerhouse but can’t hack the flavor, capsules are a great way to go as spirulina has a very strong taste.  A little experimentation will help you find the way you will most enjoy adding Spirulina to your diet.  Here is a recipe to try:

Health Benefits Of Spirulina

Recipe from: Skinny Girls Don’t Diet

Spirulina Chips

What You’ll Need:

6 potatoes, thinly sliced

2 teaspoons paprika

2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 tablespoons spirulina

1 teaspoon cumin

3 tablespoons Bragg’s Liquid Aminos

What You’ll Do:

Preheat the oven to 350°F.  Cover baking sheets with parchment paper.  Place potatoes on the parchment paper and toast in the oven for 10 minutes.  Remove and let cool for 5 minutes.  Mix all spices thoroughly in a bowl.  Sprinkle spices over potatoes.  Place back in the oven and bake until crisp, about 30 minutes. Store in an air-tight container.

Health Benefits Of Spirulina – Breaking It Down

Health Benefits Of Spirulina

National Institute of Health

Self Nutritional Data

Wikipedia – Spirulina

Saipan Island

Saipan Island A Beautiful Oasis

The best possible thing has happened—you have ended up on a nearly deserted island, a tropical oasis, Saipan Island.  Vast white sand beaches give way to 80 degree ocean waters.  Not many people know of Saipan Island and fewer have traveled to this pristine playground.  Saipan Island has its share of challenges. However, it still remains one of the Pacific’s best kept secrets.

Saipan Island – How We Discovered It

We set out to climb Mt. Fuji, excited for the adventure ahead I breezed through customs and immigration.  Upon exiting the secure area I did not see my husband who was behind me in line…waiting for 20 minutes I became worried.  I asked a security officer for assistance and with a stare I knew I was in trouble, guilty by association.  I was escorted to a back room where I saw Joby; we were told to wait for a translator.

Come to find out he had less then 6 months of travel time left on his passport and was being denied entry into the country.   After an 8 hour flight across the Pacific Ocean, I was not wanting to jump on the next flight back to the states.  One thing we knew for certain was we were not allowed to stay.  The translator suggested we hop a flight to Saipan Island, which is west of Hawaii and south of Japan.

I’m embarrassed to admit but I didn’t even know where this Saipan Island was, let alone that it is the largest island of the Northern Mariana Islands—a commonwealth of the United States, which meant no passport, no problem, we only needed a drivers license to enter.  The dollar is the local currency and local inhabitants are US citizens.  I felt that history class had really let me down.

Saipan Island

Saipan Island – A Gem Of The Northern Mariana Islands

Saipan Island is only 14 miles long and 5 miles wide.  We thought we would just grab a bus to the center of town and figure out a plan.  We quickly learned that there is no public transportation on Saipan Island.  To get around, you must rent a car or moped.

There are taxi’s on the island however, the official taxis are only allowed to take you to and from the airport or your hotel.  With such stupid logic, so a handful of illegal taxis sprouted into existence.  They have become the Uber of Saipan Island, as they undercut the taxi cartel on price and efficiency.

We put renting a car on hold to figure out where we would be staying…it’s always good to know where your going.  We hopped on AirBnB and found a local, Nicky, who offered to be our personal tour guide for a couple of days while we stayed at his house waiting for Joby’s new passport to arrive.   Things were working out.

Saipan Island

Saipan Island – It’s All About The 80’s

We woke up in a beautiful mansion over looking the ocean.  Excited to explore the island, we set out with our new friend.  The weather on Saipan Island is amazing.  The average year-round temperature is 84°F (28.9°C) and boasted 80% humidity.  Saipan Island holds the Guinness World Record for most consistent temperature.  The only deviation to Saipan’s perfect climate is the rainy season from July-November with August bringing the heaviest amount of rain falls.

The white sand beaches give way to crystal clear aquamarine colored waters with 150 feet of visibility.  The 85 degree water makes you feel like you are soaking in a healing bath.  The warm temperature allows you to play in the water all day.

When visiting Saipan, you’ll feel you have the whole place to yourself.  We quickly learned that Nicky knew everyone on the island and everything about this oasis.

Saipan Island

Saipan Island – The Grotto

We decided to visit the Grotto.  Parking the car in the parking lot, Nicky led us on a  short walk that opened up to an beautiful view of the Grotto.  A popular scuba diving site, there are three different exit holes out to open ocean.  Once outside, there are beautiful walls, swim-throughs, and caves to explore.  This site is one of the four dive sites most frequently visited by professional dive shops on Saipan Island.  The Grotto is a popular and challenging dive.

We were not prepared to scuba dive, we were just taking in the scene.   My husband thought this would be the perfect setting to teach me how to high dive, I wasn’t as sure but I went along with it.  From a large cliff which others may describe as a small jump, I set out to learn how to dive.  From below Joby and Nicky coached me to lean forward with my hands over my head, push off with my feet and just let my body follow my head into the water below…no big deal.  Well, I would love to say that I dove gracefully from the giant cliff but I did not…instead, I belly flopped and I hit hard, so hard that the wind was knocked out of my lungs and my face and chest began to burn from the sting of impact.  A glutton for punishment and not wanting to disappoint my husband, I climbed back up the cliff to try again and again with the same result; I was mastering the bellyflop.  Here is a video for your comic relief:

Saipan Island – The History

Saipan Island has its share of challenges.  In 2009, Saipan was hit by near economic collapse, which can been seen in the deteriorating infrastructure on the island.  They are still recovering.

Many of Saipan’s “tourist attractions” center around it’s involvement in WW2.  One of the islands biggest attractions is the sight of a mass suicide, known as Suicide Cliff.  At this spot, 1,000 Japanese civilians committed suicide so they would not be captured and imprisoned. Even before knowing the history, the site gave off an eerie vibe.

Saipan Island

Saipan Island – Points Of Interest

  1. The old Japanese jail:  In the middle of town there is a jail where some have reported that Amelia Ernhart spent her last days.
  2. Forbidden Island: Unlike reality TV you don’t want to be stuck on Forbidden Island. Originally occupied by evil spirits, it is now a bird sanctuary.
  3. The Last Command Post:
  4. The Garment District: Saipan was home to a thriving garment industry from the mid 1980s until 2009.
  5. Garapan Street Market: The place to meet locals, try local cuisine and buy handcrafted goods.
  6. The Old Man by the Sea: One of the most popular pocket beaches on Saipan, this rock is like an x marks the spot treasure hunt.

Saipan Island – The Local Flavor

While in Saipan you must try some of the local cuisine. The Apigigi is a sweet treat.  It is made of grated young coconut and tapioca flour.  Over an open fire the Apigigi is grilled in banana leaves.  A dish called Kelaguen is served as a side dish or main course.  The interesting thing about this meal is that no heat is used to cook the meat (cooked chicken, raw shrimp, fish or beef meat/liver) instead the “cooking” property is the acidity of the lemon juice that is used in the recipe which cooks the meat over time.

Saipan Island – The Infamous King Larry

At some point during your stay on Saipan Island, you will learn about King Larry.  In 1969, Larry Hillblom developed the courier system, now known as DHL.  He is the “H” in DHL.  This company  helped cargo save money by getting documents to customs before the ship docked, saving days or weeks at port.  By 1979, DHL was operating in 120 countries.  In 1981, he moved to Saipan Island.

Hillblom was a hero among the islanders.  He successfully sued the US government for its mistreatment of locals by persuading a judge in Guam to sanction the US for not issuing enough passports to residents.  He also filed a lawsuit on behalf of the citizens of Saipan Island against the inspector general.  When the case came up in court, he was the presiding judge.  He rendered a decision that the inspector general was not allowed to audit tax returns of commonwealth citizens; this ruling was favorable to Hillblom, as the inspector was trying to get to his tax records.

When fighting Continental Airlines for control over Air Micronesia, he used the court system to force the trial of the case in Saipan.  He gained control of Air Micronesia, and became the largest individual shareholder of Continental.

As the Hugh Hefner of Asia, Hillblom loved young virgin girls and is suspected of sleeping with hundreds of them.  The reason he wanted only virgins is that he is said to have been a germaphobe and was literally deathly afraid of contracting AIDS.

On May 22, 1995 he boarded his plane, as an unlicensed pilot Hillblom often took off on illegal flights around the Marianas.  On this day, he never returned.  The plane’s wreckage and the bodies of two passengers were recovered. Hillblom’s body was never recovered.  This incident caused a lot of speculation.

After his death, many illegitimate children came forward looking for their inheritance.  In the end, four children were able to prove that they were Hillbrom’s offspring.  Each of them received $90 million.

The history of Saipan Island is one splattered with character.  The beauty of the Saipan Island is unmatched, a picture perfect embodiment of paradise.  I learned a lot on our trip from our now dear friend Nicky—if you make it to Saipan, you should look him up.

Things To Do In Singapore

There are hundreds of thousands of things to do in Singapore.

Singapore is the New York City of Asia except much, much cleaner (like you could eat off the floor in the subway) and without the crime.  So really, its only similarities to New York City are the epic shopping that one can partake in and the many vendors hawking gastronomic ecstasy.

Things To Do In Singapore – Explore The History

Things To Do In Singapore

Shops line the roads from Orchard Street to Haji Lane and thousands of stores can be found sprawling miles underground as well.  Singapore is a hub for business of all types.  A financial powerhouse, in just 50 years, this country has been cultivated from poverty and instability to one of the most prosperous nations the world has ever seen.

Founded as a British trading colony in 1819, since independence it has become one of the world’s most prosperous countries and boasts the world’s second busiest port (after Rotterdam).

Well-placed at the entrance to the Straits of Malacca, straddling the trade routes between China, India, Europe, and Australia, Singapore is a hub for business. 5.5 million people live in the city, it is second only to Monaco as the world’s most densely populated country.

Things To Do In Singapore

The island became independent on August 9, 1965.  That means Singapore celebrates it’s 50th year as a free country in 2016.  When we take into consideration all that this country has accomplished in such a short period of time, it is astounding.

1.5 degrees north of the Equator, Singapore’s weather is generally sunny with high humidity. The monsoon season in Singapore is from November to January.  During this time, sudden, heavy showers will breakout, pouring water over the city.  These rain falls typically do not last longer than an hour.

Things To Do In Singapore– Visit The Hawker Markets
Things To Do In Singapore

A multicultural melting pot. Singapore’s cuisine is influenced by many cultures. Singaporeans are gourmands who love to eat. You will find quality Chinese, Malay, Indian, Japanese, Thai, Italian, French, American and other foods in this city-state.

Of the things to do in Singapore, the number one thing to do is to eat.

The cheapest and most popular places to eat in Singapore are hawker centers.  Basic noodle and rice dishes start at $3.00 a bowl. The vendors in the hawker market were once street vendors who sold satay or other delicacies for those passing by.  Due to government regulation and to promote higher standards of hygiene, vendors now take up residency in what Singaporeans refer to as hawker markets.

You want to stop and enjoy a meal at these three hawker markets: Lau Pa Sat Festival Market, Tiong Bahru Market and Newton Food Centre. Seating at all hawker markets are first come. When you find a table, place the package of napkins you brought with you on the table; this will reserve your spot while you order. If you forgot to bring your napkins, you can purchase a packet of tissues for $1.00; napkins are not provided. Tipping is generally not practiced.

Things To Do In Singapore– Eat, Eat and Eat Some More

Pretty much every meal you order is guaranteed to be delicious. Here is a checklist of foods you do not want to miss.

  1. The traditional peanut pancake, also known as min jian kueh.  This is no ordinary pancake.  With a crisp outside and chewy inside this pancake is doused with roasted, finely ground peanuts. The mixture of sweet and savory makes this dish perfect anytime of day.
  2. Chili crab. This dish is not for the faint of heart. A whole crab will be delivered to your table drenched in hot chili sauce. As you eat, the heat compounds until your  mouth becomes a fiery inferno.  This dish is messy, so have lots of napkins on hand or order the alternative peppered carb.
  3. Satay. Barbecued skewers of meat (chicken, beef or mutton) can be found at nearly every restaurant.
  4. Kampong. Aka “carrot cake”. Made of daikon radish and stir-fried in warm seasonings this sweet dish is reminiscent of the taste of carrot cake. Once you try it, you will never be that same and it will be a meal that calls you back for more. It can be ordered black or white. I prefer black kampong.
  5. Noodle bowl. With endless possibilities of flavors everyone can find a noodle dish they will love. At the hawker markets you can pick the vegetables, meat or noodles you want in your custom bowl. A meal will cost you between $3-5.00.
  6. Traditional Ice Cream Sandwiches. This is not your average ice cream sandwich. A block of ice cream in the flavor of your choosing is placed in folded slice of bread. Eat it quickly or you will have a mushy mess on your hands.
  7. Bubble Tea. My favorite is the Ginger tea with aloe and coconut bubble.

It’s not always easy to find vegetarian food. However, Indian stalls may have a number of veggie options. Some hawker centers will have a Chinese vegetarian stall or two.

If you want to splurge on a meal, Samy’s is a place you wont soon forget. Instead of using plates your meal is served on a banana leaf. Every dish is served family style and the portions are generous so when ordering be prepared to eat…a lot.

Things To Do In Singapore- Take In The View

Things To Do In Singapore

Singapore is best viewed from the sky and the New Asia bar paints and impressive picture of the bustling city below.  The Divine Wine bar is another must see foodie attraction. The exterior of the building is reminiscent of Gotham City. Once inside, order a bottle of wine. Women wearing fairy wings ascend a tall wine rack to retrieve your bottle of wine before serving you. The wine is pricy however the experience is with it.

Things To Do In Singapore- Go Shopping

Shopping is second only to eating as a national pastime in Singapore. Miles of shopping malls line the streets from Orchard Road to Suntec City.

The Marina Bay Sands towers over the city.  This hotel, casino, shopping mall, convention centre and museum all rolled into one boasts the beautiful Flower Dome and the Cloud Forest. This oasis of nature in the midst of the city is a great place to spend an afternoon. If you are looking to spend time in the casino you will enter the most profitable casino in the world. Locals have to pay $100/day or $2,000/year just to get in. As a foreign visitor you can penter for free when you present a passport.

Things To Do In Singapore- Explore The Amenities


Singapore’s transportation system is easy to navigate. The MRT (Mass Rapid Transit) and bus system quickly and cheaply gets you around town. Single-trip ticket will cost from $0.80 to $2.20.

The most expensive part of your trip to Singapore, after the plane ticket will most likely be your accommodation. If you are willing to stay at a hostel and book in advance you could get a bed for about $20 a night. For a low to mid-range hotel you will pay $100-$300 per night. Luxurious hotels will cost more then $300 a night.

A food lovers paradise, Singapore should be on every food lovers travel list. Stop for a few days to eat to your hearts desire and then eat some more.

Black Bean Enchiladas

Making Black Bean Enchiladas is inexpensive way to enjoy Meatless Mondays. This recipe can be quickly prepared. *Corn or flour tortillas can be used in this recipe however, corn tortillas tend to break apart in the rolling process. As always we suggest using organic ingredients as the first choice when preparing meals.

Black Bean Enchiladas

What You’ll Need:

12 small corn or flour tortillas*

1 15 ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 4 ounce can diced green chilies

1 15 ounce can red enchilada sauce

1/2 cup grated cheese + more for topping (Manchego, Pepper Jack or Mozzarella)

1/4 cup sour cream

Topping Options: Diced green onion, cilantro, avocado, lettuce, jalapeño or sour cream

Black Bean Enchiladas

What You’ll Do:

Preheat oven to 375°F. Combine black beans, green chilies, sour cream and 1/2 cup cheese in a mixing bowl. Set aside. Pour a small amount of enchilada sauce into a 9×13 baking dish to lightly coat the bottom. Transfer one tortilla at a time to the baking dish.

Scoop 3 spoonfuls of the black bean filling into the tortilla and roll up. Place seam side down and continue until the pan is filled. Top enchiladas with enchilada sauce. (Adding too much sauce can make the enchiladas soggy). Smother with cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly.

Serve with desired toppings. The Black Bean Enchiladas will keep in the fridge for a couple days.