Health Benefits of 7 Sea Vegetables
Sea vegetables can offer a mineral-rich alternative or addition to your existing diet. These vegetables are a staple of diets in Asian countries, such as Japan. Amazingly, their population enjoys much lower rates of cancer and heart disease compared to the United States and many other Western nations.
Many of the sea vegetables that you should add to your diet are types of seaweed or algae. If the only time you encounter food like this is when you go out to a sushi bar, you should find ways to integrate them regularly into your meals. The following is a list of some of the sea vegetables you’ll want to consider adding to your diet and pretty compelling reasons to do so.
Since our bodies need iodine, sea vegetables should be an essential part of your diet. Many today are iodine deficient. Iodine supports and detoxifies the thyroid. If you are uncomfortable with the ocean’s pollution and prefer to supplement instead, you can take iodine instead of sea vegetables.
This particular sea vegetable is a type of brown algae and is primarily known for its use in Japanese cooking. It’s typically sold in a dried state and is available year-round. It has a relatively mild flavor, which makes it easy to add to a wide variety of recipes and dishes. Arame makes a tasty side dish with meat or fish and when added to soups or salads. One reason you’d want to add it to your diet is Arame’s semi-sweet flavor, and another is its health benefits.
Arame is rich in iron, magnesium, calcium, iodine, and vitamin A, which makes it an excellent food for improving your hair, skin, and nails. That said, the most often touted benefit of this particular sea veggie is its use as a natural detox. Body detox regimens are all the rage among those who are very health-conscious, given the buildup of toxins from the typical Western diet.
Dulse, also known as palmaria palmata, is a red algae that grows along the northern coasts of the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. It’s known for containing all the trace elements that we need to survive as well as being an excellent source of protein for vegetarians or vegans diets. When incorporating it into your diet, you can use it as a flavor enhancer and stand-alone snack food. You may even want to put a few strips on your favorite sandwich to boost the nutritional content.
Its rich vitamin and mineral composition makes Dulse an extremely potent nutritional boost to your diet in general. The nutritional boost may take the form of specific benefits such as improved cardiovascular and digestive health. The polyphenols in Dulse have also been shown, in a 2014 study, to have anti-tumor and, therefore, anti-cancer properties. It has also shown some signs of helping with blood sugar control and weight loss.
This edible seaweed has a mild sweet flavor, which makes it a culinary favorite for many dishes, including soups and salads. Sea farmers in both Japan and Korea have been growing wakame for centuries for use in their diet. Farmers in Australia and New Zealand also harvest wakame.
As brown algae, Wakame is rich in a substance called fucoxanthin. This ingredient is so successful at burning fatty tissue that an internet search of fucoxanthin reveals many weight loss supplements that have it as a primary ingredient. Wakame is a good source of magnesium, iodine, calcium, and iron. It is also rich in vitamins A, B2, C, D, and K. Oriental medicine uses it to improve skin and hair for blood purification and menstrual regularity. This tasty gift from the oceans is a favorite for adding to miso soup and tofu salad or as a side dish.
Nori is one of the few sea vegetables that many people in the Western Hemisphere may already be familiar with. If you’ve ever bought sushi at a Japanese restaurant, chances are it came wrapped in nori. Being used as a wrap for sushi and other foods is its primary culinary use. Many find it to be delicious when it’s toasted.
Nori is a red algae form of edible seaweed. It is loaded with B vitamins and contains lots of minerals, proteins, vitamins, and trace minerals. It can be eaten as a stand-alone snack and used to wrap more than just sushi. It’s certainly a healthier alternative to the white bread that is so commonly used in the west to put around other food.
Kelp is a brown algae that grows in shallow ocean waters. It’s known for being nutritionally dense and packed with vitamins and minerals. Kelp grows in what is referred to as “underwater forests.” There are about 30 different genera of this species of brown algae, and they have an impressive growth rate. They stretch from the seafloor and can reach up over 200 feet in their quest to reach the sunlight at the surface.
Kombu is a popular type of kelp that is a standard part of the diet throughout East Asia. Especially popular in Japanese dishes, it can be sold dried or pickled in vinegar and is a significant ingredient in soup stocks as well as making a healthy snack to have with green tea.
More generally, kelp has an impressive amount of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and dietary fiber.
Its iodine content is excellent for protecting your thyroid health. Kelp is a superb sea vegetable that supports overall health. It excels in helping your body maintain pH balance, improving oxygenation through the increase of red blood cells, and improving bone mineral density. Kelp also contains fucoidan, which helps kill cancer cells while leaving healthy cells alone.
As a member of the kelp family, kombu is becoming more popular as a flavor enhancer in many dishes. Another significant benefit is that it contains enzymes that help break down the sugars in beans to make them more digestible, so they don’t produce gas.
Also known as agar-agar, this natural jelly-like substance obtained from algae has a sweet flavor. Agar is a wonderful sugar substitute that you can use in a myriad of delicious dessert recipes. It’s also an ideal gelatin substitute for vegetarians. If you are ever prone to constipation, you may be glad to hear that it also has mild laxative properties.
Agar is a good source of iron and calcium and is very high in fiber. Perhaps the best thing about it, however, from a health standpoint is what it does not contain. It has no sugar or fat and practically no carbohydrates. Agar is a wonderful ingredient for use in a variety of dessert dishes that will make them healthier when substituted in place of gelatin.
Spirulina is a sea vegetable that many health-conscious people in the Western World have already are familiar with. It’s a type of blue-green algae that has been on health food store shelves, typically in the form of green shake powders, for quite some time.
You may have also seen some growth in the wild as it is a green mass that floats on the ponds’ surface. Many people dismiss it as pond scum. One thing that can’t be denied is how nutritionally packed the blue-green algae is.
Its nutrient-dense makeup starts with the fact that it’s 70 percent protein by weight, combined with a high concentration of vitamins and minerals.
The best way to add spirulina to your diet is to make a spirulina powder smoothie, which can give you an energy boost in the morning. Smoothies have become a healthy way to start the day for growing numbers of health-conscious people.
Benefits of Adding Sea Vegetables to Your Diet
The sea vegetables mentioned above share two things in common. Sea vegetables add essential nutrients to your diet that are beneficial for improving your health. They are low in fat, sugar, or other elements seen as contributing to an unhealthy diet. Sea vegetables add to reasons that Asian cultures that eat them have much lower rates of serious health problems such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
Next, figure out ways to add them to your diet naturally, so eating these foods becomes second nature to you. You can take spirulina in pill or powder form. Arame is a mild-tasting type of kelp and an excellent way of introducing sea vegetables into your diet. You can do this by adding it to your salad dressing.
If you’re going to have miso soup or something similar anyway, don’t forget to add some kombu to it to give it a nutritional boost. If you’re looking for a way to make a tasty and nutritious sandwich, you can add Dulse’s strain that some say tastes like bacon.
There are numerous references online that can help you to integrate sea vegetables into your existing diet seamlessly. After a while, you won’t even notice that it’s taking any added effort or thought to add them to your meals. You’ll be helping prolong your healthy years and improving your quality of life by leaps and bounds.
Be happy. Be healthy. Be Organicallyou!