Dr Zoe reveals which supplements to take
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What lurks beneath the sea could be the answer to a healthier life. One particular food type has been making waves in the health world, shown to help reduce the risk of Parkinson’s disease, boost weight loss and lower blood sugar.
Sea moss, or Irish moss, is a type of sea algae that people can add to food or take as a nutritional supplement.
Sea moss is naturally rich in minerals and vitamins to help with a number of health elements.
Supplements may contain sea moss on its own, or with a combination of other ingredients. The sea moss is usually in powdered or gel form.
Seaweed is a bit of a superfood and has a higher fibre content than most vegetables
Fibre has a range of positive effects on the body.
It can improve blood sugar control, help lower your cholesterol and reduce your risk of chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease.
“Studies show that sea moss may help lower bad cholesterol, which is one of the factors for heart disease,” said registered dietician Beth Czerwony says.
“It has also been shown to help lower blood pressure, another key factor in heart health.”
One study with the National Library of Health, looked at the health benefits of seaweed.
The study analysed rats who were fed a diet rich in prebiotic, fibre-rich foods such as sea moss to help promote a healthy immune system.
It found that higher levels of immune antibodies in rats who had eaten sea moss.
The study concluded: “The results suggest multiple prebiotic effects, such as influencing the composition of gut microbial communities, improvement of gut health and immune modulation in rats supplemented with seaweed.”
Antioxidant properties in algae may also help protect against neurodegenerative disease.
Research published with Marine Drugs found that an extract from sea moss protected against markers of Parkinson’s disease.
Researchers carried out the study on roundworms.
Further research in humans would help explore the potential neuroprotective effects of sea moss on humans.
Sea moss is mostly thought to be healthy, though it contains inconsistent amounts of both good nutrients and some less healthy stuff.
“Sea moss is a product of its environment, so its nutritional value depends largely on where it’s grown,” added Czerwony.
“Unfortunately, there’s no real way to know exactly what’s in it or how much, and one batch may have higher potency than the next one.”
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