Seaweed is a "sea vegetable" that contains immense concentrations of essential minerals and trace minerals.
Because the food we eat is often deficient in minerals that are not present in the soil, sea plants are a great addition to a healthy diet.
Seaweeds were known by the Incas, in the high Andes, "to guard the heart" and the Sherpas, in the Himalayas, to give the "strength of gods."
They are a multi-cellular marine plant that maintains rigid cell walls. They do not have roots that take up nutrients from the water. Instead, their entire structure acts like a feeding vessel, pulling in high concentrations of food through their leafy blades.
Because of this structure, the entire plant is able to take in large amounts of nutrients from the ocean waters they live in. Clean ocean water is a storehouse of minerals the body needs and is often lacking.
There are 3 classifications of "sea vegetables."
1) Brown 2) Red and 3) Green sea weeds that are identified by their pigment, reproductive, and vegetative structures.
Kelp is one of the most prolific sea plants in the ocean and a powerhouse of minerals, including calcium and magnesium.
It is a brown sea weed with a high protein content. The powder from kelp is easy to add to food and is highly recommended for anyone deficient in minerals or iodine. more...
Nori belongs to the group of red algae's (though it is more green than red), that are very popular along the California coast.
Nori is probably one of the most common sea weeds known worldwide for its use in sushi making. Because it grows in abundance close to where I live and roam, I usually have a big fresh gallon jar full in my pantry. more...
Dulse is also a red variety (which is actually brown-red in color) and delicious dried in large pieces or small flakes. It happens to be one of my personal favorites as far as taste goes. I love dulse on salad's made from
Irish moss is another red sea vegetable that is actually a whitish to light brown color. Irish moss has specifically been used for its abundant source of carrageenan.
It is great for the lungs and rebuilds the immune system after serious exhaustion. We use it in our superfood shake recipe, almond milk and raw desserts to thicken and provide excellent health benefits. more...
Seaweeds are and have been used as food by many cultures around the world, if not all of them.
They do not need to be cultivated, but naturally and prolifically reproduce year after year, providing great sources of superior nutrition.
Growing up on the ocean, I always found it fascinating how much sea weed would wash up on the beach. Tons and tons of sea weed! Little did I know that I could harvest my own fresh from the tide pools. Now, harvesting seaweed is a favorite yearly ritual.
Sea plants not only extract minerals, but also an array of phytonutrients from the sunlight energy and salt water they live in. One of these is Iodine. In fact, it is the highest known source of any food.
Iodine's Health Benefits:
Sea vegetables contain polysaccharide glyconutrients in the form of carrageenan and algin.
These nutrients help to:
~sodium, calcium, magnesium, potassium, chlorine, sulfur and phosphorus~
~iodine, iron, zinc, copper, selenium, molybdenum, fluoride, manganese, boron, nickel and cobalt~
Try our seaweed salad recipe for a great and tasty way to eat your seaweeds!
Most sea weeds inhabit rocky shorelines where they can hold onto the rocks with their strong, root-like hold fasts that anchor them down. The Western and Eastern coast of the U.S. and Japan are popular sea weed harvesting regions.
I have been studying the life of sea plants for years and enjoy harvesting every year with a ritual trip to the California coastline during the early summer months.
It is important to make sure you purchased seaweeds that do not come from Japanese seaweed farms because of the radiation contamination in the Fukushima region of Japan, where the 2011 tsunami occurred.
It is good to buy seaweed from reputable sources that test for radiation and other toxic substances.
Supposedly, the Fukushima nuclear reactors are on the northeast coast of Japan, while many of the seaweed beds are on the southwest part of the island, away from direct wind or water currents.
But, further seaweed testing is required and it has not yet been revealed whether seaweeds coming from these areas remain healthy for human consumption.