Vitamins, Minerals and Dietary Supplements
What is chlorophyll? Why do we need it?
Chlorophyll is the substance responsible for giving green
plants their color. It harnesses the sun's energy during
photosynthesis and is responsible for a variety of metabolic
functions, including perspiration and growth.
the chlorophyll molecule is chemically similar to human blood,
except that its central atom is magnesium, whereas in human
blood, the central molecule is iron. It acts as an anti-inflammatory
Historically, chlorophyll was used to treat gastrointestinal
problems and to promote the formation of red blood cells and
hemoglobin. It has also been used to combat bad breath and
reduce the strength of odors associated with urine, feces
and infected wounds. There is some preliminary evidence that
chlorophyll may detoxify substances that could cause cancer.
How much chlorophyll should I take?
Because chlorophyll is not considered an essential nutrient,
there are no guidelines regarding recommended daily allowance.
However, some practitioners recommend 100mg of a chlorophyll
capsule or tablet taken 2-3 times a day to fight odors.
What are some good sources of chlorophyll?
What forms of chlorophyll are available?
chlorophyll is available in a wide variety of forms, from
fresh cut herb to tablets, extracts (both fluid and dry),
tinctures and infusions.
What can happen if I don't get enough
chlorophyll? What can happen if I take too much chlorophyll?
Are there any side-effects I should be aware of?
Since chlorophyll is not an essential nutrient, dietary allowances
have yet to be established. However, it is known that individuals
who do not get enough green foods in their diet may lack a
necessary amount of chlorophyll. As of this writing, there
are no known side-effects or drug interactions with chlorophyll.
- Chernomorsky SA, Segelman AB. Biological
activities of chlorophyll derivatives. N J Med 1988:85;66973.
- Govindjee, Papageorgiou. Chlorophyll.
McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science and Technology,
7th ed. 1992;3:581-584.
- Hayatsu H, Negishi T, Arimoto S, et al.
Porphyrins as potential inhibitors against exposure to carcinogens
and mutagens. Mutat Res 1993:290;7985.
- Keith V, Gordon M. The How To Herb
Book. Pleasant Grove, UT: Mayfield Publishing Co, 1984.
- Pedersen M. Nutritional Herbology.
Bountiful, UT: Pedersen Publishing, 1987.