A staple in many Asian cuisines, seaweed is a popular meal ingredient, dietary supplement, and a delicious snack. And if you’re concerned about your thyroid, seaweed snacks are a simple way to get the vitamins and minerals your body needs for optimal thyroid health.
If you’re looking for some inspiration, check out our list of 25 seaweed snack ideas.
7 Benefits of Seaweed
Seaweed is a species of algae and marine plants that comes in a variety of edible varieties, including nori, kelp, dulse, sea lettuce, kombu, and arame. You can eat them fresh, cooked, dried, or as a powdered supplement. Just one cup of seaweed contains:
Carbs: 8 grams
Fat: 1 gram
Protein: 5 grams
Fiber: 1 gram
Copper: 56% of the daily value (DV)
Magnesium: 17% of the DV
Iron: 21% of the DV
Folate: 13% of the DV
Riboflavin: 22% of the DV
Thiamin: 15% of the DV
In addition to being high in essential nutrients, seaweed has 7 important nutritional benefits:
- Heart health – Seaweed contains long-chain omega-3 fatty acids and soluble fiber, both of which are healthy for your heart. It can also help to reduce blood pressure and your chances of developing blood clots.
- Controlling blood sugar – Seaweed contains compounds that can reduce your blood sugar levels and help prevent type 2 diabetes. Plus, the fiber found in seaweed can slow down the rate at which carbohydrates are absorbed after a meal.
- Immune function – Eating seaweed can protect you against certain infections as well as disease-fighting properties. The marine plant compounds it contains as well as high levels of antioxidants are beneficial to immune function.
- Managing weight – If you’re focused on losing or maintaining your weight, seaweed is a great snack choice. It contains leptin, which is a weight-regulating hormone, and fiber that can help you feel fuller, longer. Low in calories, seaweed is a smart alternative to calorie-rich snacks.
- Digestive health – If you have concerns with your gut health, eating seaweed may help. Fiber helps to prevent constipation, prebiotics feed healthy gut bacteria, and prevent harmful gut bacteria from sticking to the walls of your digestive tract.
- Lowering cancer risk – Yet another health benefit of seaweed is that it can reduce your chances of developing certain types of cancer. For women, it helps lower estrogen levels, potentially helping to fight against breast cancer. And in high amounts, seaweed can reduce the risk of thyroid cancer.
- Thyroid health – For many women, their thyroid health is a top concern, and a healthy thyroid needs iodine to help it function properly. Seaweed is a great source of iodine, especially dulse, kombu, and kelp. Without enough iodine, your thyroid can’t function properly, and can lead to hypothyroidism. When your thyroid is underactive, you can experience dry skin, low energy, depression, weight gain, or tingling in your hands and feet.
How to Prepare Seaweed
Preparing seaweed doesn’t have to be tricky if you follow these tips:
Rehydrate it – If you have dried seaweed, you’ll need to rehydrate it before you use it. Fill a pot with hot water and submerge the seaweed, letting it sit for about 10 to 15 minutes.
Rinse it – If you’re using fresh seaweed, it’s important to rinse it first. This will help to remove any excess salt.
Boil it – Many recipes call for boiling your seaweed before eating it. This goes for both fresh and rehydrated seaweed. How long you boil it depends on how it’s cut, as well as its texture and thickness. Boil time can range anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes. Always keep an eye on the seaweed during boiling until it reaches your desired texture.
Change the taste – You can change the taste of seaweed by soaking it in flavored liquids. The seaweed will absorb the flavors of whatever you soak it in – the longer the better.
Store it properly – Dried seaweed can last for years if you store it properly because the high levels of salt it contains acts as a natural preservative. Even so, keep it in a dry, cool, dark place to maintain freshness and keep it from spoiling.
25 Seaweed Snack Recipe Ideas
We’ve gathered 25 seaweed snack recipe ideas that not only taste great but are also beneficial for your health. Be sure to eat no more than three seaweed snacks per week since the levels of iodine may interfere with certain thyroid medications.
- Roasted Seaweed Snack | Futuredish
- Nacho Style Nori Chips | Gathering Dreams
- Seaweed Salad | Yummly
- California Avocado Sushi Snacks | California Avocados
- Homemade Roasted & Dried Seaweed Snacks | Beyond Kimchee
- Thai Chili Tuna Seaweed Snacks | Starkist
- Seaweed Snack Roll Ups | Veggies Don’t Bite
- Crunchy Seaweed Wraps | Food Network
- Homemade Seaweed Snacks | Dora’s Dish
- Seaweed Tempura | Yummly
- Easy Korean Seaweed Chips | Christie at Home
- Seaweed Chips with Miso Mayo | Lazy Cat Kitchen
- Hurricane Popcorn | Chinese Grandma
- Seaweed Snacks | Eyes and Hour
- Truffle Seaweed Tater Tots with Truffle Mayonnaise | Yummly
- Spicy Salmon Rice Ball Seaweed Snacks | Annie Chun’s
- Avocado Wrapped with Seaweed | Sandra’s Easy Cooking
- Fried Seaweed Chips | Mikha Eats
- Toasted Seaweed Chips | Well Nourished
- Crispy Seaweed Chips | Jessica Seinfeld
- Seaweed Snack Deviled Eggs | Peter Som
- Mini Veggie Sushi Rolls | Beautiful Ingredient
- Korean Fried Seaweed Snack | Carving a Journey
- Spicy Sesame Nori | The Earthly Delights Recipe Blog
- Seaweed Snack Mix | Daybreak Seaweed Co
A super-healthy snack that’s also delicious, these 25 seaweed snack recipe ideas will give you smart choices for maintaining your thyroid health.
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