Why Everyone Is Obsessed with Sea Moss + 7 Unique Benefits

Words: Crush

If you’re into alternative wellness, you might have come across a peculiar name: sea moss. This unassuming seaweed has become a rising star in the health and wellness industry, captivating enthusiasts with its abundance of nutrients and potential health benefits. So, what exactly is sea moss, where does it come from and why is it causing such a buzz? Let’s dive in and explore this marine marvel once praised by Honduran herbalist, Dr. Sebi, and punted by American actor, Michael B. Jordan.

benefits of sea moss

What is sea moss?

Sea moss, scientifically known as Chondrus crispus, is a type of algae that grows abundantly along the rocky coasts of the Atlantic Ocean, particularly in Ireland and other parts of Europe. Various forms exist – it could be red/purple, pale golden or green. It has a rich history of being used in traditional Irish and Jamaican cuisine, and is now gaining worldwide recognition for its potential health benefits.

While scientific research is still limited, many individuals claim it’s had positive effects on their overall well-being.

One of the intriguing aspects of sea moss is its impressive nutritional profile. Packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, this oceanic wonder provides an array of essential nutrients for optimal well-being. Sea moss contains a significant amount of iodine, which is crucial for proper thyroid function and metabolism regulation. It also boasts a plethora of other vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C and K, magnesium, zinc and iron.

Interestingly, it has natural gelling properties. When soaked in water, it forms a gel-like substance that can be used as a thickening agent in various recipes, making it a valuable ingredient in the culinary world. This unique characteristic has led many to use sea moss as a vegan alternative to gelatine in desserts, smoothies, and even homemade beauty products.

7 Surprising Sea Moss Benefits

Apart from its culinary versatility, it’s also touted for its potential health benefits. While scientific research is still limited, many individuals claim it’s had positive effects on their overall well-being. Here are a few of the supposed benefits of sea moss:

benefits of sea moss

1. Enhanced digestion

Sea moss is believed to have prebiotic properties, which means it acts as a food source for beneficial gut bacteria, promoting a healthy digestive system.

2. Immune system support

With its high vitamin C content and immune-boosting antioxidants, it’s thought to strengthen the body’s natural defence mechanisms against certain illnesses and infections.

3. Thyroid function regulation

Due to its iodine content, sea moss may support thyroid health, potentially aiding in hormone regulation and metabolism.

4. Skin nourishment

The gel-like consistency of sea moss makes it a popular ingredient in skincare products. It is believed to hydrate the skin, promote a youthful complexion, and soothe dermatological conditions like eczema and psoriasis.

5. Improved libido

Sea moss could boost energy in more ways than one. This superfood is believed to be an aphrodisiac and may boost sex drive and hormone levels, both testosterone and oestrogen; some have even reported that it could help improve erectile dysfunction.

6. Boosting reproductive health

If you struggle with dysmenorrhea or menopause, ingesting sea moss could help reduce unpleasant symptoms like period cramps, and help regulate hormones. It’s even said to boost fertility, but more research is needed to substantiate these claims.

7. Heart health

Sea moss is known for maintaining heart health, diabetes, hypertension and cholesterol. Due to the high levels of potassium chloride, magnesium and calcium, it’s said to improve insulin sensitivity and reduce cholesterol and blood pressure levels, as potassium helps relax blood vessels. Some even use it as a salt substitute by sprinkling it over their food.

Why Is sea moss suddenly so popular?

The demand for sea moss has skyrocketed in recent years, fuelled by the growing interest in alternative wellness practices. Its popularity can be attributed to several factors… social media platforms have played a significant role in spreading awareness about its potential benefits. Influencers and wellness enthusiasts have shared their experiences and recipes, generating buzz and curiosity among their followers. The increasing preference for natural, plant-based ingredients has also created a ripe market for sea moss and other superfoods.

Real Sea Moss vs. Fake Sea Moss

Unlike many crops that require large amounts of water and land, sea moss is a renewable resource that grows naturally in the ocean. Harvesting practices have evolved to ensure the preservation of wild stocks, making sea moss a promising eco-friendly option for health-conscious consumers.

 Due to increasing popularity, some manufacturers extract sea moss from the ocean and cultivate it in aquatic tidal pools.

But with any high-demand commodity, like essential oils or other wellness products, manufacturers can sell inauthentic products promoted as being 100% organic. In the case of sea moss, the real McCoy is grown wild in the ocean; it clings to rocks and grows with the tide. Due to increasing popularity, some manufacturers extract sea moss from the ocean and cultivate it in aquatic tidal pools to replicate its natural environment, while being able to ramp up production for mass distribution. Companies likely profit from this practice, but it also serves as a sustainable cultivation method to ensure the preservation of wild stocks and protect marine ecosystems without depleting natural resources. Although ‘pool-grown’ sea moss still has benefits, it’s not nearly as potent as wild-grown, 100% organic sea moss.

fake vs. real sea moss

It’s always best to buy the dehydrated sea moss, as it’s easier to spot physical differences, which may not be as noticeable when bought in gel form. Wild sea moss should have a hardened texture when dehydrated in the sun; the strands are thin and only expand once placed in water, whereas the pool-cultivated sea moss is generally still moist, and has a certain odour (slightly chlorine-like). Another distinct difference between wild-grown and pool-cultivated kind is that latter usually has salt deposits attached to the strands, whereas wild sea moss doesn’t.

As with any health trend, it’s crucial to exercise caution and listen to your body’s needs. While many individuals report positive experiences with sea moss, it may not be suitable for everyone, especially those with dietary restrictions or medical conditions. It’s always best to consult a healthcare professional before exploring the supposed benefits of sea moss.

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