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A Quick Profile of Sea Plants

 

Sea plants are green, brown, red and blue-green:

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Kelp (laminaria) contains vitamins A, B, E, D and K, is a main source of vitamin C and is rich in minerals.  Kelp proteins are comparable to animal protein quality.  A brown marine plant, kelp contains sodium alginate (algin), an element that helps remove radioactive particles and heavy metals from the body.  Algin, carrageenan and ager are kelp gels that aid digestion and rejuvenate gastrointestinal health.  Kelp works as a blood purifier, relieves arthritis pain and promotes adrenal, pituitary and thyroid health.  Kelp is best know for its therapeutic iodine that can normalize thyroid-related disorders like overweight and lymph system congestion.  It is a demulcent that helps eliminated herpes outbreaks.  Kelp is reach - a little goes a long way; use it mostly as a seasoning.

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Kombu (laminaria digitata, setchelli, horsetail kelp) has a long tradition as a royal Japanese delicacy with great nutritional healing value.  It is a decongestant for excess mucous and helps lower blood pressure.  Kombu has abundant iodine, carotenes, B, C, D and E vitamins, important minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium, silica, iron and zinc and the powerful skin healing nutrient germanium.  Kombu is a meaty, high-protein seaweed, often used in soups and to flavor stocks for sauces.  It is higher in natural mineral salts than most other seaweeds.  Add a strip of kombu to your bean pot to reduce gas.

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Hijiki is a mineral-rich, high-fiber seaweed, with 20% protein, vitamin A, carotenes and calcium.  Its crisp black strands are delicious sautéed with seafood or veggies, in soup or on rice.  Hijiki has the most calcium of any sea green 1400mg/100g of dry weight.

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Nori (porphyra, laver) is a red sea plant with a sweet, meaty taste when dried.  It contains nearly 50% balanced, assimilable protein, higher than any other sea plant.  Nori's fiber makes it a perfect sushi wrapper. Nori is rich in all the carotenes, iodine, iron and phosphorus.  Nori's high calcium content makes it a good choice for weight loss and bone density for menopausal women.

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Arame (eisenia bycyclis), is one of the ocean's richest sources of iodine.  Herbalists use arame to help reduce breast and uterine fibroids, and through its fat soluble vitamins and phytohormones, to normalize menopausal symptoms.  Arame promotes soft, wrinkle-free skin, enhances the growth of glossy hair and prevents its loss.

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Sea Palm (postelsia palmaeformis) the American species of arame, grows only on the Pacific Coast of North America.  One of my favorites, it has a sweet, salty taste that goes especially well as a vegetable, rice or salad topping.

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Bladderwrack is packed with vitamin K - an excellent adrenal stimulant.  It is still used today by native Americans in steam baths for arthritis, gout and illness recovery.

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Wakame (alaria, undaria) is a high-protein, high calcium seaweed with carotenes, iron and vitamin C.  Widely used in the Orient for hair growth and luster, and for skin tone.

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Dulse (palmaria palmata) a red sea plant, is rich in iron, protein and vitamin A.  It is a supremely balanced nutrient, with 300x more iodine and 50x more iron than wheat.  New tests on Dulse show activity against the herpes virus.  It has purifying and tonic effects on the body, yet its "salt" nourishes as a mineral, without inducing thirst.

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Irish Moss (Chondrus Crispus, carrageen) is full of electrolyte minerals - calcium, magnesium sodium and potassium.  Its mucilaginous compounds help you detoxify, boost metabolism and strengthen hair, skin and nails.  Irish moss was traditionally used for a low sex drive.

 

Preventative measures may be taken against iodine deficiency problems or disease risk by adding just 2 Tbsp of chopped dried sea greens to your daily diet.

 

 

Sea greens are tasty.  Crush, chop, snip or crumble any mix of dry sea veggies you like into soups and sauces, pizzas or focaccias, casseroles and salads.  Roast them into anything you cook.  If you add sea vegetables, no other salt is needed, an advantage for a low salt diet.  Sundried, they are convenient to buy, store, and use as needed.  Store them in a moisture proof container and they keep indefinitely.  A wide variety of sea greens is available today.

 

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