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Feb 132013
 

What are the benefits of kelp? Well before we answer this question, let’s find out what kelp is?

Kelp – or sea kelp – is a seaweed which has been used as a natural remedy for a number of ailments for many, many years. There is no arguing about the benefits of sea kelp, but some still question the extent of its effectiveness. Kelp is readily available in several forms and it is fairly safe for use in most people. It contains several nutrients and minerals that can supplement the diet and enhance your health.

The FDA has only granted GRAS – generally regarded as safe – to two types of kelp. The FDA seems to have a hard time considering an “algae” – even the two approved – to fit their definition of GRAS since according to the FDA “the uncertainty with respect to the source and the nature of these materials makes it imprecise to attempt to evaluate the health aspects of the use of substances that simply bear the designation brown algae, red algae, or algae.”

 

 Benefits of Kelp
Picture of Kelp

 

Some Fun Facts About Kelp

  • It is related to brown algae
  • It grows in nearly all the major oceans of the world
  • Several varieties of kelp exist, including rockweed, laminaria and bladderwrack, the three most common types of sea kelp used in supplements
  • Sea kelp comes in liquid and powder forms, but tablets and capsules remain the most popular supplement choice

 

Nutritional Value of Kelp

Among the valuable minerals sea kelp supplies, you will find:

  • Iodine
  • Salt
  • Iron
  • Potassium
  • Phosphorus
  • Calcium

The vitamins found in kelp include:

  • Vitamin A
  • Niacin

 

Kelp also provides healthy doses of protein and fiber – about 8% of each!!  As if that weren’t enough, kelp can also help restore the optimum pH levels in your body because it is a highly alkaline substance.

 

Benefits of Kelp

Sea kelp can:

  • Improve thyroid function
  • Potentially increase metabolism and energy
  • Decrease weight gain
  • Aid in digestion and correct mineral deficiencies since the minerals are so easily absorbed by your body
  • Increase immunity
  • Enhance brain development
  • Help prevent osteoporosis
  • Possibly alleviate impotence and anemia

 

Benefits of Kelp: Something to Consider

People with thyroid conditions – or a history of thyroid problems – should consult a physician before trying any kelp-based product. Also, sea kelp tablets and other kelp products can potentially interact with other natural supplements and prescription or over-the-counter medications, so consult a doctor, pharmacist or a natural health expert.

 

 

Sources for Benefits of Kelp:

  • http://www.ehow.com/about_5070351_benefits-taking-sea-kelp-tablets.html
  • http://www.fda.gov/Food/FoodIngredientsPackaging/GenerallyRecognizedasSafeGRAS/GRASListings/ucm153939.htm

 

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