Many people who would like to lose weight quickly and cannot stick to normal diets are turning to weight loss supplements to see results. Using this method of weight loss can show results in a matter of days and weeks rather than months. Most of these supplements come from totally natural sources, meaning they are not harmful to your body. They usually take the form of powders, tablets or drinks and contain these supplements.

The use of sea vegetables being rich sources of vital nutrients make them the healthier alternative and a natural power food. The ocean water has up to 92 minerals and can be absorbed by the plants growing in the sea. This makes sea vegetables as one of the most nutrient dense foods on the planet. Seaweed–compared to land vegetables–is one of the best vegetable sources of calcium, which is fantastic for muscle and bone development, strength and growth.

Don’t worry if the idea of eating seaweed grosses you out. Your health food store will have different seaweed granules that you can use as a salt substitute and you’ll never know the difference.

I’ve just come across this interesting article by Alice Miller where she is talking about how seaweed can help reduce absorption of body fat. Please share and comment and let me know what you think about this article. 

According to research conducted at Newcastle University UK, scientists have discovered that a fibre found in seaweed is more effective than most weight loss supplements in respect of preventing the body absorbing fat from food.

During their research, nutrition experts investigated 60 different types of seaweed fibre for how good they were in preventing the body from absorbing fat. Their lab tests reported that the alginate fibre won hands down.

According to researcher Dr Iain Brownlee, “Our initial findings are that alginate significantly reduces fat digestion. This suggests that if we can add the natural fibre to foods commonly eaten on a daily basis, such as bread and biscuits, up to 75% of the fat contained in that meal could simply pass through the body.”

In powder form, this alginate is colourless and flavourless. The biochemists at Newcastle University added this kelp fibre powder to bread to see if they can develop foods that aid weight loss as you consume them, and researches reported that it actually made the bread taste better.

However, this breakthrough is not exactly new. A Scottish chemist, E. Stanford discovered alginates from British kelp in the 1880s. The name is based on “algae”, which comes in many species. The most common being brown seaweed.

Early claims about seaweed and weight loss centred on its iodine content. Iodine was first isolated from brown seaweed in 1811.

World War II stimulated the alginate industry, when production units were set up in Scotland, Ireland and California, harvesting local seaweed resources of wrack and kelp. This sea kelp fibre is currently used by manufacturers in small quantities to thicken and stabilise food.

Alginates are gel-forming gums that provide a wide range of functional properties in foods and beverages-from providing gelling for desserts and dairy products to thickening sauces and serving as gelatine replacements.

This seaweed fibre also known as alginates, ammonium alginate, calcium alginate, potassium alginate and sodium alginate is a gelatinous substance obtained from certain seaweeds and used as stabilizers and water retainers in beverages, ice cream, ices, frozen custard, emulsions, desserts, baked goods, and confectionery ingredients.

It is also a clarifying agent for wine, chocolate milk, meat, toppings, cheeses, cheese spreads, cheese snacks, salad dressings, and artificially sweetened jelly and jam ingredients.

As reported in the Consumer’s Dictionary of Food Additives. Crown Publishers, Inc., New York. 1978, alginates are used also as stabilizers in gassed cream (pressure-dispensed whipped cream). The alginates give a creamy texture and prevent formation of ice crystals in ice creams.

The question is. If it works on bread and biscuits, would it also work on other treats? Could this open the possibility that all those forbidden foods that we love, but pay us back by piling on the pounds, could now actually help in our weight loss program? Imagine being able to tuck into the cookies, buns, and dare I say it….chocolates, and still lose weight?