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Health Benefits of Seaweed

Aparna Jadhav Dec 3, 2018
Have you ever thought of having seaweed for dinner? You can now consider that as an edible option, since seaweed is a healthy algae full of some major nutrients. Here are some information about its health benefits.
Seaweeds are algae with a good nutritional value. They have been a delicacy right from the Neolithic times, in a number of countries like Britain, Scotland, Japan, and China. These were consumed by farmers and coastal communities as they are rich in minerals and vitamins.
There are a variety of seaweeds available and their nutritional contents vary according to their types. It is gaining a lot of importance worldwide and hence it is readily available. Here are some of the widely consumed ones, along with their health benefits.

It is popular, and is an important component in a number of daily use products like cosmetics, toothpaste, fertilizer, etc. Kelp is a major source of iron, magnesium, Vitamin B9, and also iodine which aids in prevention of goiter.
Laver and Nori

Laver is mostly consumed by the Irish people in the form of Lava bread. Nori is a Japanese weed sold in flat sheets and is often roasted and wrapped around pieces of sushi. Laver and Nori are both rich in vitamins like Vitamin C, A, B1, B2 (riboflavin), E and K, iron, proteins, magnesium, potassium, iodine, and has low levels of fat.

Wakame shows anti-obesity properties as it has a very high amount of EPA, an essential fatty acid. Other seaweeds are also considered healthy for the endocrine systems.

It is a reddish brown seaweed found in Iceland and Ireland and is a rich source of sodium. It can be soaked in water overnight and consumed with milk and water. The nutrient contents present are the same as the other seaweeds.

Health Benefits

  • Replenishes quite a few deficiencies in the body.
  • Osteoporosis is prevented.
  • It also helps in reducing birth defects and protects the child from having congenital cardiovascular diseases.
  • Regulates the thyroid metabolism as it is the richest source of iodine.
  • It controls obesity and dissolves fat wastes through the skin by increasing perspiration in order to restore a youthful texture.
  • Since it contains the vital nutrients, it helps in maintaining a healthy diet regime.
  • It consists of lignans (a type of phytoestrogen) which has anti-cancer properties.
  • It also plays a very important role in brain development.
  • Magnesium which acts as an anti-inflammatory substance is also present in high amounts.
  • It helps in reducing menopause symptoms like hot flashes and fatigue.
  • Science has proved that these weeds contain a large amount of alginic acid which has the ability to bind to the unwanted heavy metals in the intestine. This helps in the detoxification of the body from such toxic metals.
  • One of the most important health benefits is that it increases the body metabolism.

More Benefits

There are a number of ways of consuming it, and the easiest is a healthy seaweed salad. Vinegar, sesame oil, ginger, sugar, soy sauce, and some salt, are added to a bowl full of dried and soaked wakame and sprinkled with roasted sesame seeds.
This is rich in calcium, thiamin, and has about 0.8-0.9 mg of iron, 5.6 gm of Niacin, 1,300 mg of sodium, 100 calories, and 39.1 gm of carbohydrates. It also increases the hemoglobin levels, nourishing your skin, regulating your hormones, and helping in metabolism.

Roasted Seaweed Benefits

Roasted seaweed is used in the very famous Japanese delicacy 'sushi'. The recipe consists of pieces of raw fish and some vegetables rolled in wraps of roasted seaweed and eaten with sauce.
This recipe is as healthy as a salad rich with iron, magnesium, and carbohydrate content, but the only difference is that when the seaweed is roasted it kills the harmful bacteria that thrive on the seaweed for food and are not suitable for the human system.
Considering the aforementioned health benefits, including it as a part of your diet might prove beneficial.
Disclaimer: This is for informative purposes only and does not in any way attempt to replace the advice offered by an expert on the subject.