Man eating nothing but algae for one month

Man eating nothing but algae for one month


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Algae for breakfast, lunch and tea with nothing else in between for a whole month might sound a bit much for most but that's exactly what Has Algae co-founder Tim Gardner is doing.

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FOOD OF THE FUTURE: Algae might not sound appetising at first but it holds promise as the next superfood.

FOOD OF THE FUTURE: Algae might not sound appetising at first but it holds promise as the next superfood.

Algae for breakfast, lunch and tea with nothing else in between for a whole month might sound a bit much for most but that's exactly what Has Algae co-founder Tim Gardner is doing.

It has both a personal and professional motivation.

A check-up showed the 35-year-old was low in Omega 3 and had "shockingly high" cholesterol.

It was the impetus he need to put his product, a strain of Nannochloropsis green algae, to the ultimate test - a 30-day algae-only diet.

On day seven, Mr Gardner said he was losing about 500 grams a day on his daily portion of 9 grams of rehydrated algae but, aside from feeling a little hungry and severely tempted to break his gruelling regime, was surprisingly well.

"I've still got energy," he said.

"I feel like I can't move too quick, like I can't run upstairs because that'll just tire me out but, energy-wise, I'm actually fine, really."

The taste was also surprisingly good.

"To me, it tastes like a little bit like chicken, or a little bit savoury, a little umami flavour doesn't taste fishy, like you've eaten a fish or you've had a fish oil supplement, and then you know, you burp it up, and you can taste it again, doesn't really taste like that," he said.

Mr Garner is providing daily video updates on social media but said he did not expect it would become a viral sensation.

"People have negative impressions about algae," he said.

"They just see it as this yellow green stuff that grows on top of water and it kills everything."

The professional motivation for the personal trial was quite serious.

Mr Gardner's business, Has Algae, is new but certainly has big ambitions.

"I want to be 100 million in 10 years," he said.

Mr Gardner and co-founder Brendan Fu have teamed with University of Queensland Plant Microbe Interactions Laboratory head Professor Peer Schenk to form the company supplying the food service industry with both algae oil and a protein powder as health-boosting vegan ingredients.

Mr Gardner said the global Omega 3 market is valued at $28 billion but believes it will grow to $50bn in five years.

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