Seaweed is becoming no stranger in the superfood world, gaining pace with its catalogue of health benefits vaster than the ocean. But is there any truth in these claims? Or is seaweed the latest ‘superfad’ we’re being fed? We wanted to know more.
Let’s start with the benefits of seaweed.
It’s a nutritional powerhouse
Packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, seaweed is fuelled by goodness. Each species (and there are hundreds) provides its own cocktail of nutritional content. While Wakame offers calcium, iron, magnesium and iodine, Nori has significant amounts of vitamin A, C and B-complex. In addition to this, seaweed is low calorie and low fat yet fibre dense - which brings us to our next point…
It’s great for digestive health
Seaweed gets the thumbs up from your gut too. It has been shown to strengthen the gut mucus and support good gut bacteria. Seaweed slows down digestion and energy release, keeping you fuller for longer with steady blood sugar levels.
You can use it as a ‘pick-me-up’
Feeling under the weather? Search under the sea for a remedy. Seaweed-based drinks and soups are used across the world after illness as a boost to getting better. Some claim it even acts as a hangover cure.
The skincare industry loves it
From body wraps to masks and creams, seaweed has its feet firmly in the sand in the skincare industry. Extracts are used for their mineral rich qualities that translate into skin saviour products. It hydrates, nourishes, brightens, reduces the appearance of wrinkles, pigmentation, the list goes on…
Time for the bad.
Some claims aren’t supported by human studies
The claims of improving heart health and regulating hormones are impressive. However, although animal studies and inconclusive theories all point towards the positive effects of seaweed on the heart and hormones, none have been confirmed.
Our verdict? SUPERFOOD!
We may be waiting on research to support some claims fully, but that doesn’t take anything away from seaweed’s superpowers. Whether you add seaweed to your salad, soup or skincare regime, you definitely won’t regret it.
Tip: Make sure you purchase your seaweed from a reliable source such as Clearspring.