Topic 1. Algae

Have you had your algae today? Algae as whole food: Give a specific example of microorganism. Why and how they are used as nutrient supplement and what their benefits are.

I take algae, which are used as a whole food, in the form of a food supplement every day. For example, a nutrition supplement, Spirutlina, is made of Arthrospira platensis, which is in turn a microorganism that belongs to the blue-green algae, and offers various health benefits for people.

Algae are used as a food supplement because they provide different advantages for people’s health, such as improvement of the cardiovascular function, functions of the nervous system, and neurotransmission. Algae nutrition supplements also improve people’s immunity, memory, mood, the ability to concentrate, and even body composition.

Algae contain omega-3 fats and other fatty acids, linoleic acid, stearidonic acid, and protein. They also contain vitamins C, D, A, B, and E. Algae are rich in iron, calcium and magnesium. Nutrition supplements, made from Algae, help to prevent damage of neurons caused by toxins, and diseases of the heart, eyes, and kidneys.

Fucoidan, which is a type of brown algae, is helpful against colon cancer. Algae also reduce the chance of having diabetes. In addition, algae help to lower the high blood pressure, and keep the blood pressure level balanced.

Arthrospira platensis are another type of algae, which is used both as a whole food and as a nutrition supplement. Algae as a nutrition supplement are available for usage in pills, powder, or flakes. Manufacturers of the algae nutrition supplements recommend taking 200 – 300 mg a day.

To sum up, algae as a whole food and as a nutrition supplement are healthy and beneficial for human organism.

Topic 2. Malaria.

1. What is microorganism responsible for a disease?

The microorganism, which is responsible for causing Malaria, is protoctistan. It consists of a single cell, and exists in the blood and organs of the body. The 4 species of protoctistan are: Plasmodium vivax, Plasmodium falciparum, Plasmodium malariae, and Plasmodium ovale.

2. How common is it?

Plasmodium vivax is the most widely distributed among the 4 species. However, the most dangerous is Plasmodium falciparum because it has the most drastic effects. Malaria is a deadly disease, which is common in tropics. It has affected 300 million people, causing from 1 up to 1,5 million deaths each year. Malaria is especially dangerous for children and pregnant women.

3. How do people get it?

People get Malaria from an infected person. The virus of malaria spreads through the bite of a female Anopheles mosquito. The mosquito injects Plasmodium with the saliva during the bite.

4. How is it diagnosed?

The diagnosis of malaria is based on a physical exam. The blood sample is examined under the microscope in order to find the presence of malaria parasites. In case if the malaria parasites have been found, the further lab tests will follow to specify what kind of parasite it is.

5. What are symptoms and treatments?

Symptoms of Malaria are usually as follows: chills, high fever, sweats, fatigue, headache, vomiting, and nausea. Malaria is treated by the use of medicine, such as Chloroquine or Coartem.

6. How can it be prevented?

In order to prevent Malaria, a person should take appropriate medicine, such as Chloroquine, Mefloquine or Doxycycline, before and during the travel to the area where Malaria is a common disease, e.g. tropics of Africa.