The top five benefits of eating seaweed
When you look at seaweed, the words yummy and delicious are not the first descriptions that come to mind. It’s green, slippery and slimy. Then again, despite its almost obnoxious appearance, it was recently labeled as the new superfood due to its various uses and nutritional value.
In China, Korea and Japan, seaweed has long been a part of people’s diets. Despite this already important status in these countries, it is only recently that this food has been widely accepted and recognized as nutritious and versatile. To date, there are over 10,000 species of algae that differ widely in nutritional value and taste. Among these species, the best known is nori, a type of seaweed used to make sushi. Besides nori, other popular varieties include spirulina, kelp, wakame, arame, and dulse.
Here are the top five benefits of eating seaweed:
Seaweed has many nutritional benefits
All kinds of seafood are known to be high in nutrients. The most important nutrients they contain are iron, iodine, copper and calcium. They are also known to be loaded with folic acid, vitamin K, fiber and protein, as well as low in fat and calories. This remarkable nutritional profile makes algae beneficial to health and a powerful ally in the fight against different types of diseases and illnesses. Some attribute the long life expectancy of the Japanese to their daily diet and their love of seaweed. In a study published by the American Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, seaweed was found to be very helpful in improving heart health and lowering blood pressure. Sea vegetables contain fucoidan, a molecule that may be responsible for the cardiovascular health, immune system, and other health benefits of the Japanese.
Seaweed supports overall thyroid health
To generate hormones, our thyroid depends on iodine. If our body lacks iodine, we will experience certain symptoms like swelling in the neck, fatigue and weight problems. Ideally, we should be consuming 150 micrograms of iodine per day. Since seaweed contains high levels of iodine from the sea, consuming it could help us meet our daily iodine needs.
Besides iodine, seaweed also contains tyrosine, an amino acid that works with iodine to keep our thyroid glands functioning properly.
Algae fight free radicals
Antioxidants, molecules that can stop some of the damage that free radicals can do to our cells and bodies, through diabetes, lung disease and more, are found in algae. The same goes for vitamins E, C and A and plant compounds, such as carotenoids and flavonoids. All of these protect our body from damage caused by free radicals.
Seaweed is good for your tripe
Gut bacteria are vital to our overall health, but there are good bacteria and bad bacteria. If we have more harm than good, we end up getting sick. Algae can prevent this as it is a great source of fiber. Since we don’t digest the fibers, they pass through us and feed the good bacteria. More fiber in our system means that our gut health is significantly improved. Nearly 30 to 70% of the dry weight of seaweed is made up of fiber, according to studies, which makes it a
better source of fiber than vegetables and fruit. Sulfated polysaccharides, a type of sugar found in algae, are known to improve the population of good gut bacteria.
Seaweed can help you lose weight
Since seaweed is high in fiber, it can help delay hunger, making you feel fuller for longer and eat less without addiction. Because fiber doesn’t contain sugar, even if you have too much of it in your system, you don’t gain weight. Besides fiber, seaweed is also known to have some anti-obesity effects, which makes it a good ingredient.
for people who struggle with their weight.
Look beyond the slimy, slippery appearance of seaweed to discover the benefits of eating it. With a bite to eat, you started to improve your overall physical well-being.
Authors biography: Charles Watson is the content editor for Sunshine Behavioral Health. A lifelong health advocate, Charles writes on health and drug addiction. He can be reached directly on Twitter at @ charleswatson00.
DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this article are the property of the author. Slimnhappy assumes no responsibility in this regard.
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