Cutting to the chase: Sea moss is good for supporting healthy bodily functions as a result of the high mineral count. These healthy bodily functions include:
- Expelling excess mucous
- Improving skin health
- Reducing inflammation
- Balancing your hormones
- Building up stronger blood cells, and
- Enhancing libido, just to name a few
When I started to look at the question ‘What is sea moss good for?’ I found myself reflecting on the intention behind the question more than the answer I was seeking.
I am focused on living a healthy lifestyle and being mindful about what I eat. But I also believe that food needs to be nutritious, aesthetically pleasing, and taste good too.
So when I found out about sea moss I got pretty excited. In this article, I want to share with you a little about what this is, dive deeper on what it is good for, and look at some of the different ways to use this amazing marine vegetable.
What is Sea Moss
Sea moss is a species of red seaweed. It has become known by several botanical names which makes it a bit confusing if you’re wanting to identify an authentic product.
Eucheuma Cottonii and Chondrus Crispus are two of the more popular versions of sea moss available on the market today. They are both derived from the red seaweed but look very different. However, I understand that they have similar benefits.
Eucheuma Cottonii seaweed grows abundantly in warmer waters, typically the Java Sea, the Celebes Sea, the Solomon Sea, the Caribbean Sea, and the Atlantic and the Pacific Ocean. The waters that Eucheuma Cottonii prefers are by no means still, and they tend to be clearer.
While Chondrus Crispus is a species of seaweed which is rarer and grows more slowly in cooler waters of the Northern Atlantic. This type of seaweed is also known by many as Irish Sea Moss (Chondrus Crispus) or Irish Carraigín because the Irish consumed a lot of it in the 1840’s.
It became popular around the time of the Irish Potato Famine from 1845 to 1849 as it was looked to as a source of sustenance. People would wait until the tide went out and collect the red seaweed. Then they would lay the seaweed on the rocks to sun-dry with salt to preserve it until they were ready to use it.
In the 1940s the Irish made seaweed delicacies. They would add sea moss to stews, make desserts with it and also use it for medicinal purposes. Unfortunately, this red seaweed became associated with poverty due to the population at the time relying on it as a staple. And by the end of the famine it had fallen from grace and was not consumed as frequently.
Most people aren’t aware that sea moss is widely used around the world. Look on some of your processed food packages and you’ll find the word Carrageenan.
Do you know what Carrageenan is?
Carrageenan is an extract from sea moss and it’s used to make beauty products, toothpaste, beverages, confectionery and many different types of dairy products. Unfortunately, Carrageenan, being an extract of sea moss doesn’t contain all the amazing properties that whole raw sea moss has.
What is Sea Moss Good For?
Seeing as you’re reading this article, I presume that you’re already aware that sea moss is an amazing Superfood. Top of the charts if you ask me. But, if you’re still wondering what all the hype is about, let me explain.
As it turns out, sea moss has a heck of a lot of benefits. I’m so pleased that more and more people are coming to realize this.
Our bodies require an amazing 102 minerals for optimal health. Usually, people focus on the 16 essential minerals. If you’ve ever bought those multi-mineral tablets from the pharmacy, they will typically consist of:
- Sulfur, and
Personally, I prefer eating a diet full of variety so that I can consume all the minerals my body needs.
It turns out that sea moss contains a whopping 92 minerals which is why it is a Superfood. And that’s just the beginning. Because sea moss contains so many beneficial minerals, it is great for people who are malnourished.
In my experience, sea moss has improved my skins complexion, given me mental clarity and improved my physical health.
Sea Moss is a Great Source of Collagen
The human body is made up of different types of collagen proteins which are almost identical to the collagen proteins found in sea moss Seaweed. Sea moss has life-enhancing nutrients which help to strengthen the bones, improve brain function, and more.
The collagen is absorbed into the body where it is needed the most to combat ailments and improve general health. There are a number of ways that you can get sea moss into your day which we will look at a little more as we go on.
As a spoiler alert, sea moss can be soaked and turned into a gel or jelly and used for a range of purposes to promote better health and general wellbeing. Some people like to cook their sea moss, but I prefer to use raw sea moss gel. Sea moss gel helps the body with a range of health issues.
Sea Moss as Medicine
What is sea moss good for from a medicinal perspective? The research is ongoing and it looks like the list seems to be endless, but I’d like to cover a few that I found interesting in this article.
Expel excess mucus from the system
Sea moss contains antiviral properties which help the body recover from colds, flues and some more severe illnesses as well. It has been used to treat respiratory problems from coughs to phlegm, Bronchitis, Pneumonia, Tuberculosis, and more for generations.
Improves skin conditions
Sea Moss contains antibacterial properties. When Sea Moss is applied topically to the skin it relieves and treats a variety of conditions from minor burns (including sunburn), to acne, rashes, psoriasis, dermatitis, and eczema.
I have been applying raw (uncooked) sea moss gel topically to my skin for several months now. I have noticed a visible improvement in my skin.
My skin texture appears more smooth, I experience fewer pimples, and a reduction in the fine lines around my eyes. The type 1 and 3 Collagen from the seaweed gives me a youthful looking appearance. No need for expensive cosmetics, I just apply sea moss gel morning and evening.
Irish Sea Moss, when consumed, may help relieve muscle and joint pain. It possesses naturally occurring anti-inflammatory properties. Sea moss has been used to reduce the appearance of, and pain caused by the inflammation of varicose veins.
There are people who also consume sea moss for improved gut health. Sea moss is believed to reduce the inflammation of the stomach and intestines while increasing the presence of good bacteria. Eating sea moss on a regular basis has been shown to improve digestive health.
Our hormones are managed by the thyroid gland which is found at the base of the throat. The thyroid gland is responsible for balancing our hormones and managing the immune system.
If the thyroid is not functioning properly, people tend to experience either an over or underactive thyroid. Sea moss contains Iodine which helps to balance the thyroid function, and strengthens the immune system.
Be careful when taking pharmaceutical thyroid medication as this may conflict with the sea moss natural properties. Consuming too much, or not enough Iodine, may lead to more serious issues down the track.
Blood Builder and Cleanser
Consuming the sea moss gel is recommended by advocates of old for the natural treatment of high blood pressure. Sea moss contains natural blood thinners, so it is not recommended to consume sea moss when taking any type of blood thinning medication (anticoagulant) or blood pressure medication (antihypertensives).
Irish Sea Moss also helps to clean the blood through a process of detoxification. It has been identified that Sea Moss helps the blood regulate sugar levels. This makes this seaweed a good natural product for people with diabetes to help manage their blood sugar levels.
Some people believe that seamoss plays a key part in increasing their libido, and claim that it’s a great aphrodisiac. Being more than satisfied in this department, I can’t personally attest to this, but, there you go. I bet that wasn’t on the list when you were asking ‘what is sea moss good for?’
Dr. Sebi, the late Honduran Herbalist who promoted alkaline foods, explained in detail how a change in his diet, where he fasted and consumed alkaline foods, including seamoss, had cured himself of impotency. He later went on over the years to treat many patients for a variety of ailments.
What else is sea moss good for? Healthy eating of course! You can feel comfortable eating seamoss because when it has been prepared properly it has almost no scent or flavor. This means that it is very versatile in the kitchen.
I add sea moss to smoothies, iced coffee’s, raw cakes, soups, and stews. The possibilities are endless, and it seems that with each day I’m finding a new way to make seaweed a part of my diet.
Unless you have particular health issues, you can pretty much eat as much as you want. It is advisable to speak with your Dietitian before making changes.
Sea Moss for Weight Loss
I used to be a weight loss coach, and I must admit that the concept of eating healthy was a vague and sometimes poorly defined for my clients. When I spoke with people about choosing healthy options there was an assumption that ‘healthy’ must mean food that was boring like plain flavorless salads and nasty tasting health products.
In my experience, this does not need to be the case. There are lots of amazing healthy meal options available on the market. And adding these seaweeds to a variety of healthy meal options makes this a simple process. Check out our recipes for some ideas on how you can make seamoss a flavorsome part of your day.
Irish Sea Moss is low fat and low cholesterol. Actually, there is research to show that a balanced diet consuming a low-calorie diet and sea moss may help with weight loss. There are plenty of accounts of people on YouTube that have shared their weight loss successes when they’ve consumed sea moss as part of a healthy diet.
We are also frequently told about the benefits of consuming fiber in our diets. The great news is that sea moss contains Dietary Fiber which is essential for gut health and a good digestive system.
Making and Using Sea Moss Gel
Making Sea Moss Gel
Using about 0.5 ounces (15 grams) of dried sea moss will make about 17 fluid ounce (500 ml) of sea moss gel. This is a simple process which has a few basic steps that I’ll outline for you.
Rinse your seamoss thoroughly with cool, clean water. You need to make sure you remove any sand, salt, and foreign matter off the seaweed. Once you are happy with the cleanliness of the seaweed, soak the it in about 17 fluid ounce (500 ml) of clean, filtered water for 24 to 48 hours.
Some people suggest a shorter time frame and boiling the sea moss, but I think it’s better to soak the sea moss for a longer period of time. This will expand to about three times its original size. It will be quite soft and slimy to touch (depending upon the species).
Blend the sea moss with some, or all, of the water that it was soaking in until it is a smooth consistency. The more liquid you add the runnier the consistency. Decant the sea moss gel into a clean glass container and store in the fridge until ready for use. This will last for between two and three weeks before it will begin to smell funny.
Note: Good quality seaweed is harvested from the ocean by seaweed farmers. If the seaweed is not farmed but collected from rockpools and shallow waters, this is referred to as wildcrafting. If wildcrafting is not done properly, then it may damage the environment and the ecosystem they support.
Commercially wildcrafted seaweed has been known to damage the environment. When you consider the scale of an operation that is required to meet the demand of a commercial wildcrafting, this is not sustainable. This is why we recommend buying sea moss from suppliers that have harvested their seaweed from responsible, sustainable seaweed farms to protect the environment.
Sea Moss Bath
Clean and then soak your raw sea moss in fresh (preferably filtered) water for twelve (12) to twenty-four (24) hours. Add your sea moss, with the water it was soaking in, to a bath and allow to rest for a few minutes.
You may choose to leave the sea moss in the bath if you wish, or remove it before getting in, that’s up to you. The sea moss bath will hydrate and moisturize your skin. The collagen in the sea moss will also help to reduce the appearance of cellulite, firm the skin, and leave you feeling relaxed.
Irish Sea Moss Milk
Sea Moss Milk is otherwise known as Sea Moss Gold. To make this yourself, simply add milk to a pot and heat gently with sea moss. You can also flavor the milk with honey, black pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves.
You can drink the Sea Moss Gold with (or without) a nip of whiskey. When Sea Moss Gold cools, the Sea Moss Milk resembles a pudding-like texture similar to tapioca.
Caribbean Sea Moss Drink
In the Caribbean, they make a Sea Moss Drink by first cleaning the seaweed thoroughly. The next step is to soak the seaweed in lime juice overnight.
Add some water, cinnamon and the seaweed lime mixture to a pot and bring to the boil.
Allow to cool down and then add some sweeteners like sugar, vanilla, condensed milk, and some dried fruit to taste.
More Recipe Ideas
Irish Sea Moss is a natural thickening agent. It can be added to many different foods. By adding sea moss to hot meals broths, soups and stews, the mixture will thicken.
I love to add Sea Moss gel to my smoothies. It gives them a beautiful silken texture. We have made many vegan desserts with sea moss, from our Vegan Red Velvet Cake to Vegan Whipped Cream. You can add sea moss to ice-cream, fruit juices, iced-coffee, milk drinks.
I would love to hear from you about your experiences with sea moss. Let us know what you have found sea moss to be good for in the comments below.