Science believes life spawned from the Earth’s oceans with our planet’s first creatures crawling out of the sea. Now, a group of Danish scientists claim that looking back to the ocean might be the key to making modern life healthier, suggesting that simply adding a bit of seaweed to common foods could help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.
Ole G. Mouritsen, a professor of biophysics at the University of Southern Denmark, is somewhat of a seaweed expert. He’s written several books on the subject and recently co-authored an article for the journal Phycologia looking at the food’s health benefits. “Certain substances in seaweed may be important for reducing cardiovascular diseases. We think this knowledge should be available for society and also be put to use,” he said in a release.
Mouritsen claims that consuming as little as five to ten grams of dried seaweed per day would be enough for people to see these health benefits, leading the professor to advocate for essentially supplementing many of our foods with a bit of extra seaweed. He and his co-authors suggest everything from adding seaweed to fast food to replacing four to five percent of the flour in products like bread, pasta and pizza dough with granulated seaweed to even adding seaweed to meats.
According to their research, seaweed’s benefits stem from a laundry list of factors: It contains dietary fiber, protein, antioxidants, healthier potassium salts and satiating umami flavors, just to name a few of the things the scientists cite. “We know that many people have difficulty distinguishing between healthy and unhealthy food,” the authors wrote. “By adding seaweed to processed foods we can make food healthier. In many cases we also get tastier food.”
Not to mention that seaweed is easy to find. I see it just washing up on the shore all the time. Chow down, people!
Related: This New Seaweed Tastes Like Bacon