Is Seaweed the Next Natural Weight Loss Superfood?


Wild Seaweed Salad. Image via: 101 Cookbooks

I've always been a fan of seaweed salad from sushi bars--a nice salty substitute for the sushi I love but can't eat with a clear conscience. I've also snacked on Nori strips on days I've felt low energy. The iodine is said to help uplift.

But could my seaweed snacks be aiding in weight loss, too?Quite possibly. According to the BBC, a recent study out of Newcastle University found that alginate, a fiber found in sea kelp, reduces the body's fat uptake by more than 75 percent. Meaning if you intake 100 grams of fat with this alginate, your body would only hold onto 25 grams. If the science rings true, that's a pretty huge deal!

Seaweed Splashed Food Products

With fad diet foods abound, it's no surprise that clinical trials are underway to see how this fiber might be added to commonly eaten foods like bread, biscuits, and yogurt. Why they can't advocate the consumption of the real deal or suggest a reduced intake of breads and biscuits (I'm no nutritionist but I do think this aids in weight loss) I'm not sure, but it makes me think dollar signs are in play. A big variable in the land of weight loss cures.

But I suppose, with finicky taste buds and the potential of cranky bread lovers, it's worth giving seaweed splashed food products a go if it means battling obesity without the usual added environmental expenses of surgeries and prescription pills.

Even so, I think I'd much rather see the rise of seaweed popularity thanks to surprisingly tasty dishes and recipes that leave folks eating it as a whole food, at its most nutrient-dense. Combined with exercise and other dietary modifications, of course.

::BBC News
More on Weight Loss:
Seven Ways to Eat Green (and Inadvertently Lose Weight)
'Eco-Atkins' Diet Lowers Weight, Cholesterol Level, (& Carbon Footprint)
Can Climate Change Affect Your Body Weight?

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