Seaweed is one of the world’s most environmentally friendly crops. It actually can capture and store carbon from the environment more efficiently than most trees and plants, and as such, may play a role in combating climate change.
It’s also one of the most nutritious foods in the world. It grows in mineral rich waters – rich in iodine, iron, calcium, vitamin A,B and C, high in protein, omega 3’s and soluble fiber. This marine algae can be brown, red or green.
Brown algae ( kombu,wakamb and arame) known for high iodine content.
Red algae ( dulse and nori) high in protein.
Green seaweed ( chlorella) high in antioxidants.
According to Emeir McSorley, PhD, out of Ulster University in Norhern Ireland seaweed contains specific chemicals that can prevent and relieve a number of chronic ailments: ” The benefits of eating seaweed not only include nutuonal value, but also the bio active compounds they contain that are unque to a marine environment.” Researchers believe seaweed has the potential for fighting the following diseases.
A study out of Universitty of South Carolina’s Cancer Center revealed that several compounds found in Brown seaweed (alginate fiber; fucoxanthin, a carotenoid; the polysaccharides fucoidan and laminarin; and polyphenol defense compounds) play a significant role protecting against cancer. Additionally, another study showed reduced estrogen levels associated with lower breast cancer rates after consuming seaweed.
Gut Microbe Imbalance:
Studies show that kelp has demonstrated the ability to shift gut microflora composition. The polysaccharides in seaweed may also act as a prebiotic – foods that fuel a healthy gut microbiome.
Seaweed has the ability to alter some biological processes connected to metabolic syndrome. A 2011 Japanaese study found that alginic acid in kombu ( brown algae) may prevent type 2 diabetes by blocking the absorption of triglycerides – fat molecules, at high levels, can indicate insulin resistance. Flucoxanthin ( brown seaweed) has been shown to lower blood glucose and insulin levels.
Flucoxathin has also been shown to block the accumulation of abdominal fat and inhibit overall weight gain. Additionally, diets that include aliginate helped lower blood cholesterol and glucose levels.
Cautionary Note: AVOID SEAWEED IMPORTTED FROM CHINA