Friday, March 29, 2013

Article # 434. Seaweed Super Foods




Seaweeds are one of nature's true wonder foods! They are one of the most nutritionally dense plants on the planet and also the most abundant source of minerals in the plant kingdom as they have access to all the nutrients in the ocean.

Being a superfood, a little goes a long way!

Benefits of Seaweeds
  • Blood Purifying: The chemical composition of seaweeds is so close to human blood plasma, that they are excellent at regulating and purifying our blood. 
  • High in Calcium: They can contain up to 10 times more calcium than milk and 8 times as much as beef.  
  • Alkalizing:They help to alkalize our blood, neutralizing the over-acidic effects of our modern diet.
  • Have Powerful Chelating Properties: They offer protection from a wide array of environmental toxins, including heavy metals, pollutants and radiation by-products, by converting them to harmless salts that the body can eliminate easily.
  • Contain Anti-oxidants: Seaweeds contain lignans (naturally occurring chemical compounds) which have anti cancer properties.
  • Detoxifying: They are rich in chlorophyll (the pigment that makes some seaweeds green) which is a powerful, natural detoxifier that helps to draw out waste products.
  • Boost Weight loss: Seaweeds play a role in boosting weight loss and deterring cellulite build-up. Their naturally high concentration of iodine, helps to stimulate the thyroid gland, which is responsible for maintaining a healthy metabolism. At the same time, its' minerals act like electrolytes to break the chemical bonds that seal the fat cells, allowing trapped wastes to escape. 
Different Types of Seaweeds That You Can Enjoy Everyday
Nori - Nori is best known as the seaweed used to make sushi rolls. You can make your own at home, but make sure you use the untoasted nori sheets for maximum nutrient content.

Kelp - Kelp, also known as brown algae, is the most common seaweed found along the ocean shores. Due to its thick leaves it is perfect for a hot seaweed bath. It is also available in supplement form.

Dulse - Dulse is a red seaweed and can be bought either whole or as flakes. Dulse sold as flakes does not need to be soaked and can be added straight to any meal.  Whole dulse is better soaked, drained of water, and sliced before adding to your dish. It is great to use as seasoning on salads, vegetables and soups.

Arame - Arame is a ‘black’ stringy looking seaweed. It needs to be soaked for a few minutes before it is added to cooking, where it will double in size.  It can be added to any grain dishes, stir fries, soups, salads and curries.

Wakame - A deep green seaweed, wakame is sold fresh or dehydrated. It tastes best when hydrated in water for a few minutes before being used. Sprinkle in soups, stocks, stews, stir fries or savory dishes.

Kombu - Used in Japan for centuries as a mineral rich flavour enhancer. Add a strip of kombu when cooking beans to make them more digestible and to reduce gas. Add a strip of kombu to your sprouts when soaking them to allow them to soak up the minerals.
When sourcing or buying seaweed, choose certified organic brands where possible. Seaweeds will absorb the properties of the water in which they are grown, so you want to ensure that they have been grown and harvested in unpolluted waters that are pure, and free from harmful chemicals. 

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