It may be microscopic, but the benefits of Canada’s newest superfood are enormous. Phytoplankton, also known as a microalgae, comes from the ocean and is considered the world’s original vegetable. It’s also packed with omega fatty acids, vitamins A, C, D and K, beta carotene, dietary fibre, antioxidants, calcium, magnesium, selenium, iron and protein. Not too hard to see why it’s being called a superfood.
New Brunswick-based company Blugenics Innovations Ltd., which launched in November 2015, has seen a huge spike in sales—$1.8 million in the last year to be exact—of their Karen brand of phytoplankton thanks to its status as a first-of-its-kind natural health product. According to company-led studies and anecdotal reports, Karen phytoplankton is effective in treating things like digestive issues, inflammation, fibromyalgia, migraines, chronic pain, low energy and skin issues like psoriasis and eczema.
The man behind Blugenics, David Hunter, credits the product’s success to his own personal life-changing experience. For years, Hunter suffered from migraines, chronic fatigue and severe allergies, but all of that is behind him since he started using phytoplankton. “It affected me in such a profound way,” he says. “I remember feeling as though I had my life back.” He reports that his headaches and allergies are completely gone and his immune system is so strong that he “hasn’t had a cold in years”.
Karen phytoplankton is cultivated in a state-of-the-art facility that is certified according to strict global food safety protocols HACCP and ISO 22,000, meaning the product is non-toxic and entirely safe for consumption. It is also allergen-free and is currently being tested as a treatment for digestive problems like irritable bowel syndrome.
According to Dr. Melanie Wills, a University of Guelph PhD student in molecular and cellular biology who is part of a research team for the effectiveness of phytoplankton on IBS, “Karen is a single ingredient superfood phenomenon similar to Quinoa, where you have this ancient product that is suddenly seeing a surge in Western society.”
Karen is currently available over-the-counter at pharmacies, health food stores and health and wellness centres across Canada in pure powder form, which you can easily add to your smoothies, applesauce and yogurt, or just mix it into a glass of water of juice. It’s also available in tablet form and as a derma-cosmetic moisturizing skin cream.
For a list of retailers or to order online, visit www.thekarenproject.ca.