Spirulina is a blue-green algae that is sold in several forms as a nutritional supplement. It is rich in protein and vitamins B and E, along with essential fatty acids, copper, iron, zinc, manganese and selenium. Although it has not been tested in human studies, those who use spirulina say that it supports immune-system health. If your child's doctor recommends spirulina, you may have trouble getting your child to take it. Fortunately, there are number of ways you can make taking it more appealing.
Talk to your child's pediatrician about dosage. Although doctors sometimes recommend giving spirulina to children, the appropriate dosages for children has not been determined. The dosage for adults is four to six 500-mg tablets daily. Your child will probably require considerably less.
Try different forms of spirulina. Spirulina can be purchased in flake, pill and powder form. It is also available in a freeze-dried form. Find the form that your child is most comfortable taking.
Crush spirulina pills, and mix them with your child's favorite food or drink, such as fruit juice. Or sprinkle the powder over ice cream and cover it with chocolate syrup. Think about this seriously before you do it, though, because you're counteracting the nutritional benefits of spirulina with the extra calories, sugar and fat in the ice cream. In pill form, spirulina has no taste. Spirulina flakes, as well as the dried and freeze-dried forms, have a fish-like taste and odor.
Teach your child how to swallow the spirulina pills if he is not used to swallowing. Use small candies. But do not try this with any child who is younger than 2 or any child who has a gag reflex.