Got sea vegetables? 6 types you can easily add to your diet!
Do you eat sea vegetables?
If you answered no, you are not alone. Most Americans do not know about sea vegetables nor do we get them in our diets.
I remember the first time a nutritionist (an awesome, Weston A Price minded nutritionist) asked me ‘How often do you eat sea veggies?’ I looked at her like she was out of her mind.
Besides the sushi rolls on occasion, how else would I even begin to get them in my diet? Who eats seaweed in the US?
Over time, I have learned more about sea vegetables and how nutrient dense they are, I decided to make a more concerted effort to get them into my family’s diet.
Why? While there are many different types of sea vegetables, they are considered to be a superfood. They contain the broadest ranges of minerals of any food, containing almost every mineral found in the ocean.
They are one of the only non-animal sources of Vitamin B12 and can help your body normalize an underactive thyroid and out of balance adrenal glands. They are antiviral, antimicrobial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory.
They are also great sources of iodine, a variety of vitamins and minerals, calcium, trace minerals, amino acids, essential fatty acids, chromium and iron. Ounce for ounce, they have more vitamins and minerals than any land vegetable.
It can be a bit overwhelming starting to incorporate them into your diet. But it can be done, easily!
Are you nervous about incorporating them into your diet? Don’t be!
My favorite sea vegetables are fairly easy to eat…not too ‘seaweedy.’ And, while I don’t normally recommend ‘hiding’ foods, some of these are so easy to hide, your children/picky husband/fake food eating family members will never know they are there!
Sea Palm has a sweet, salty taste. It is highly concentrated in iron, calcium, potassium and iodine.
- How to Use: Usually sold in ‘crunchy’ form, they are great to eat as a snack or to crumble on top of salads or vegetables.
Wakame is very sweet and tender. It has many of the same nutritional benefits as kombu and is rich in calcium, Vitamins B and C.
- How to Use: Once rehydrated, wakame is very soft and tender. You can use wakame in a variety of salads (mix with cucumber, rice vinegar and a touch of sugar…delicious!). You can also add a ¼ cup of wakame to sauerkraut.
Kombu is high in protein and contains good amounts of iodine, Vitamins B, C, D and E and many minerals. Kombu is good at breaking down proteins to make them more digestible.
- How to Use: My favorite way to use kombu is to put it in soups, stews or sauces while they are cooking. Sometimes I will break a piece in half and toss it in. I remove it when the cooking is over and enjoy the benefits the kombu left behind. Because kombu is good at breaking down proteins, it is excellent to add when you are cooking beans. Helps break them down so you do not experience the intestinal discomfort that can come from beans.
Sea Lettuce is very mild in flavor. It is an excellent source of fiber and magnesium.
- How to Use: Dried sea lettuce is very crumbly and flaky. It is so mild in taste you could sprinkle it on almost anything, cooked or cold foods. I keep some on my kitchen table and sprinkle it on almost everything.
Kelp contains vitamins A, B, E, D and K and is rich in minerals and vitamin C. It is also high in natural iodine. Kelp can act as a blood purifier and remove heavy metals and radioactive particles from the body.
- How to Use: Kelp Granules are my favorite way to use kelp. You can sprinkle them like salt on a variety of foods. They are pretty rich in flavor. I think they taste like the salt on your body after a swim in the ocean. Add a tiny sprinkle to any warm food to enrich your diet!
Nori is one most people recognize as it is used to wrap sushi rolls. Nori has a sweet, meaty flavor. Nori is a good source of carotenes, calcium, iodine, iron and phosphorous.
- How to use: As a wrap, of course! And you can think outside the sushi box. Roll up rice with shredded vegetables (fermented vegetables would be even better). Or forget the rice and use quinoa or another cooked grain. Grilled shrimp is excellent in nori as is fruit. The sky is the limit for fillings!
I hope I have given you some ideas about what kinds of sea vegetables to try and how to try them! There are so many ways to easily add their nutritional benefits to your diet. You can find many on Amazon and at your local grocery stores.
Do you eat sea vegetables? What are your favorites and how do you use them?