Seaweed - the first super food!

The nutritional value of seaweed far exceeds any land plant. They are the first plants on earth and among the most nutrient-rich foods on the planet.  Here is more information on this amazing super-food!

Nourish your body thoroughly by adding seaweed to your diet 

Seaweeds are the most ancient plants on earth and among the most nutrient-rich foods on the planet. However, the chemistry & physiology of seaweeds (essentially sea vegetables) is very different from that of land plants. Seaweeds absorb all the minerals and nutrients in seawater (many of which are no longer present in soils today). They are able to concentrate the essential elements, which are the building blocks of the human body. 

Seaweed’s Vitamins and Minerals 

Compared to land vegetables, sea vegetables have up to 20 times more usable minerals, concentrated calcium & iron, and possess the ideal potassium to sodium ratio. They are also rich in vitamins, contain all minerals and trace elements identified as health requirements, and contain other nutrients, many of which are known to offer protection from radiation or chemical pollutants. (The amount of individual minerals & essential elements varies according to the specific seaweed, but they are naturally presented in balanced proportions for easy assimilation by the body). 

They are the richest foods in natural organic iodine, with a high bioavailability, which boosts metabolism, regulates weight, and stimulates cellular activity (burn fats and eliminate toxins). 

Seaweeds can offer one of the very few plant-based sources of Vitamin B12 so they provide excellent nutritional support for vegans and vegetarians, especially those who avoid animal protein. They also offer an array of other minerals such as magnesium, potassium, and calcium. 

Seaweed’s Protein 

Proteins in seaweed are offered in a simple form that is easy for human bodies to assimilate. This protein is also low in calories and fat, alkaline, and contains no cholesterol. As a result, red seaweeds tend to offer the highest protein of all seaweeds. 

Seaweed’s Carbohydrates 

Seaweeds also contain exceptional saccharides in the form of glyconutrients ( for example, Agar & carrageenan) & complex sugars (like Mannitol). In addition, seaweed carbohydrates are slow releasing sugars in the form of fibers, supplying plenty of energy with few calories. The fibers in seaweed come insoluble & insoluble forms. 

Seaweed’s Fatty Acids 

Ocean vegetables contain fatty acids with a favorable ratio of Omega-3, antioxidants & phytonutrients. 


Other nutritional value of seaweeds- Balancing  

Seaweeds are generally low in sodium and therefore do not have an adverse effect on blood pressure. They are a very favorable alternative to those on a low sodium diet. They are naturally salty and have a far improved mineral content than pure table salt. The alginates they contain help balance salts in the body by eliminating excess sodium & environmental toxins. 

Seaweeds contain phytohormones & sterols, with almost no calories. 

Being one of the most alkaline foods one can eat, seaweeds support the neutralization of acidity in the body. 

Other nutritional value of seaweeds- Cleansing and Detox 

Seaweeds have unique compounds that attract toxins, and some of them, like Agar and Irish moss, also have a gentle laxative effect, helping the body eliminate waste more efficiently.  

In summary, the nutritional value of seaweed is unrivaled and holistic. One does not have to eat significant quantities of seaweed to enjoy the health benefits they offer. Rather than consume a handful of supplements daily, start to add a sprinkle of seaweed seasoning to your regular diet. 

Ensure you buy good quality seaweeds which are dried naturally (so they retain their vitamins and natural enzymes), tested for contaminants, and harvested ethically and sustainably.  

All The Ways Seaweed Can Nourish Our Bodies 

The definition of nourish is to provide food or other substances necessary for growth, health, and good condition, and seaweeds are the epitome of healthy plants. Sprinkle a small amount onto your meal. This will significantly nourish your body. 

Seaweeds (also known as sea vegetables) contain all the nutrients essential to health and emotional balance; historically, they have been a staple in the diet of the healthiest people in the world. Sea vegetables are among the most nutrient & mineral-rich foods on the planet. They concentrate on all the essential elements that are the building blocks of our planet and human bodies. As a result, seaweeds have been credited – in part – for the lowest incidence of cancer, heart disease, osteoporosis, and obesity in Japan, when compared to other industrial nations. 

Seaweeds provide: 

They provide a concentrated plant-based source of vitamins, minerals, and salts.  

More than any land vegetable, seaweeds are the most highly mineralized plants on earth. Their structure enables them to accumulate minerals directly from the ocean. These minerals are essential to the body and help the body use other nutrients and vitamins more effectively. The major mineral concentrations include calcium, magnesium, potassium iodine, phosphorus, sodium & iron. In addition, seaweeds are also an excellent source of micro-nutrients like manganese, selenium & zinc. 

Complex B vitamins, including B12 

Among the 13 vitamins present in seaweed are B vitamins, which are hard to find in a plant source. They are critical to bolstering metabolism, maintain healthy skin & muscle tone, and are essential to nervous solid & immune systems. Vegans and vegetarians can benefit significantly when consuming seaweed as their likelihood of getting B12 from other plant sources is low. 

The best natural source of iodine 

The entire body, not just the thyroid, requires iodine for metabolic health. The body can absorb iodine in three ways: by mouth (eating seaweed), via the skin (seaweed baths or sea soaks), or the lungs (inhale it at the seashore). 

The individual iodine requirement depends on many factors:

  • Individual chemistry
  • Goitrogen load (lifestyle factors suppressing the thyroid function)
  • Toxicity
  • The availability of essential micronutrients  

Unique compounds – predominantly brown seaweeds that play an important role in preventing and correcting degenerative diseases. Among them are Algin, Fucoidan, and Laminarin.  

Lots of fibers 

Seaweeds contain many ‘polysaccharides,’ most of which are not digested by humans; therefore, they are regarded as dietary fibers. Seaweeds have a relatively high fiber content (33-75%), particularly rich in the soluble ones (50-85% of total fibers), some of which have prebiotic benefits. 


According to ‘Plants as a Natural Source of Antioxidants’ by Nawal Kishore Dubey, algae represent the most untapped source of natural oxidants. This is mainly due to their enormous biodiversity, which exceeds that of higher plants (terrestrial). 

Essential amino acids 

Seaweed protein is a source of all amino acids, especially glycine, alanine, arginine, proline, glutamic, and aspartic acids. In algae, essential amino acids (EAAs) represent almost half of total amino acids, and their protein profile is close to the profile of egg protein.  

Fatty acids (3 & 6) at a favorable ratio 2/1 

 Low ratio of omega-6/omega-3 fatty acids is more desirable in reducing the risk of many chronic diseases of high prevalence in Western societies. 

An ideal ratio of potassium to sodium (2.4 to 1) 

Potassium is needed to offset the hypertensive effects of sodium & regulate blood pressure, and maintain proper pH levels in the body fluids. An imbalance between these minerals can lead to several diseases.  

A valuable non-dairy, bioavailable plant source of calcium 

Seaweeds contain a notable amount of calcium with low oxalic acid and phytates – unlike other plant sources of calcium – which makes the calcium in seaweed highly available. Seaweeds also contain many trace minerals, which are essential for bone health.  

Antibiotic, antibacterial, antiparasitic, antiviral & anti-inflammatory agents. 

 A rich source of lignans – a phytochemical found in high concentrations in sea vegetables may help prevent cancer cells from forming by preventing the process of angiogenesis or new cell formation. Research has shown that lignans may be useful in the treatment of lymphoma. Lignans may also antagonize oestrogen, which means implications in the prevention of oestrogen sensitive cancers, like breast cancer. Dr. Jane Teas of Harvard University published a paper saying that kelp consumption might be a factor in lower breast cancer rates in Japan. She is now researching the effects of seaweed as a natural replacement for HRT.  

Source of essential glyconutrients 

Several studies have reported that marine carbohydrates exhibit various biological activities, including antioxidant, anti-infection, anticoagulant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-diabetic effects.  

Much research is underway to deepen our understanding of the many ways seaweeds nourish us and support our health. Already, many of the bioactive compounds isolated from seaweeds are used in life-saving drugs worldwide. 

Too often, unfortunately, research leads to the extraction of ‘isolates’ (isolated compounds), also called micronutrients. Although they certainly offer benefits, we believe that consuming the whole seaweed plant as a food, rather than supplement, offers higher long-term benefits. Invariably in nature, the whole is more than the sum of its parts; more specifically, the therapeutic effectiveness comes from the cumulative & balancing effects of the sum-total of the combined nutrients in the original food, rather than the overloading in the body of the one compound found to resolve a singular issue. Moreover, there is growing evidence that micronutrients act in combination rather than in isolation.

Disclaimer: This material is provided for educational purposes only and IS NOT intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This information is generic and may not include the latest research. We encourage you to do your own research and discuss your findings with a qualified health practitioner who can help you validate the outcomes in the context of your specific & individual health situation.