Seaweed is one of the biological resources found in coastal and marine areas. The term “seaweed” is botanically ambiguous because it is used for 2 different groups of “plants”.
This seafood ingredient is famous for its unique taste and texture. Seaweed is safe for consumption because of its nutritional content which is good for health.
Biologically, seaweed is a group of plants with chlorophyll consisting of one or many cells and in the form of colonies. Seaweed contains organic materials such as polysaccharides, hormones, vitamins, minerals, and also bioactive compounds. Various types of seaweed such as Griffithsia, Ulva, Enteromorphna, Gracilaria, Euchema and Kappaphycus have been widely known as food sources such as seaweed salad or a potential source of carrageenan needed for the gel industry. Likewise with Sargassum, Chlorela/Nannochloropsis which have been used as heavy metal adsorbents
Seaweed has the ability of chromatic adaptation, namely the adjustment of the proportion of pigments with various received lighting qualities so that they can produce various colors of the thallus/tree. There are several types of red seaweed that have economic value and have been cultivated in various countries
Red seaweed is famous as a producer of carrageenan. Carrageenan is a polysaccharide compound that has the ability to form gels with better strength. There are three types of carrageenan, namely kappa, iota, and lambda carrageenan. Currently, seaweed as raw material for making carrageenan is met from cultivation
Type of Seaweed
Types of seaweed that are widely cultivated as raw material for carrageenan are E. cottonii and E. spiosum. The two types of seaweed are most often cultivated because the demand is very large, both domestically and abroad. In addition, the types of carrageenan-producing grasses are E. edule and Hypnea. However, the demand for both types of grass is relatively low so it has not been cultivated.
This type of seaweed is the most widely cultivated carrageenan producer in Indonesia. E.cottonii has smooth thallus cylindrical, cartilaginous, green, yellow, gray, or red in color. In the thallus there are spines that are not arranged in a circle.
Branches of E. cottonii spread in various directions with the main stems coming out close to each other at the base.
E. spinosum in some areas known as agar-agar fractures. The thallus of this seaweed is smooth, cylindrical, cartilaginous, dark brown, yellow green, or red purple. In the thallus there are thorns that grow in circles at varying intervals to form thallus segments between the thorn circles.
This species of seaweed can grow up to 12 meters. The main characteristics of Sargassum sp. is a cylindrical or flattened thallus shape. If held, this seaweed feels slippery. There is a main stem with a slightly rough round shape.
Sargassum has thick branches like trees on land. The shape of the leaves is wide, oval, and looks like a sword. The color of the Sargassum thallus is brown. Sargassum can be found on rocks in choppy areas.
This seaweed belongs to the red seaweed or Rhodophyta. Characteristics that can be recognized from Hypnea sp. is the straight thallus. Hypnea has weak branches and is brown or green in color. Along the talus can be seen there are fine hairs. This type of seaweed is commonly used for its carrageenan part as industrial raw material.
Just like Hypnea, Eucheuma cottonii is also a group of red seaweed aka Rhodophyta. E. cottonii has a branched thallus with a cylindrical or flattened shape. These ramifications when viewed more closely are irregular and rough.
This seaweed habitat is in tidal areas, coral reef flats, or attached to hard substrates. In Indonesia, the cultivation of E. cottonii is found in South Sulawesi, Central Sulawesi, Southeast Sulawesi, East Nusa Tenggara, West Nusa Tenggara, Bali, and East Java.
This type of seaweed can be recognized by its cylindrical thallus. The branches are pointed and full of protrusions in the form of soft spines. The surface of E. spinosum is smooth, the color is dark brown, dark green, yellow green, to purplish red.
Benefit of Seaweed For Health
Seaweed Content Nutrient content in seaweed is quite diverse. Based on Indonesian Food Composition Data, it is known that in 100 g of raw seaweed there are several nutrients, such as the following:
87 g air
41 kal energi
1,4 g protein
0,3 g lemak
8,1 g karbohidrat
2,2 g serat
3,2 g abu
80 mg kalsium
20 mg fosfor
1,6 mg besi
250 mg natrium
380 mg kalium
0,20 mg tembaga
0,4 mg seng
1,958 mcg beta-karoten
0,20 mg vitamin B
2 0,00 mg vitamin B
2 0,1 mg niasin
7 mg vitamin C
According to a study, seaweed has various health benefits. Launching from hellosehat.com, here are the benefits of seaweed for health.
1. Lose weight
The first benefit of seaweed is that it can help lose weight. For example, brown seaweed which contains the pigment fucoxanthin is known to launch metabolism. The content in these plants can also convert fat into energy. The natural fiber in seaweed is also believed to block the absorption of fat in the intestines and can provide a longer full effect. So when consuming seaweed, you can delay hunger and maintain an ideal body weight.
2. Can heal wounds
Another benefit of seaweed is that it can help heal wounds quickly. The content of vitamin K contained in seaweed is known to work together with platelets. This can speed up the process of blood clotting when the wound. 3. Strengthens bones and teeth Seaweed is known to contain calcium which can strengthen bones and teeth. In addition, calcium is also good for maintaining healthy heart, muscle, and nervous system functions.
3. Strengthens bones and teeth
Seaweed is known to contain calcium which can strengthen bones and teeth. In addition, calcium is also good for maintaining healthy heart, muscle, and nervous system functions.
4. Increase energy
The benefits of dried seaweed can also increase energy. This is because seaweed contains iron which can help the body produce more energy. that way, you can stay fit and active. The iron content in seaweed also plays an important role in the formation of hemoglobin which carries oxygen throughout the body. So the body can avoid the risk of anemia.
5. Preventing the risk of diabetes
Another benefit of seaweed is that it can help prevent the risk of diabetes. The content of fucoxanthin can improve blood sugar balance. In addition, other content, namely alginate can also help prevent an increase in blood sugar.
6. Prevents swelling of the thyroid gland
Iodine content in this algae can maintain thyroid health. A healthy thyroid condition can prevent the body from various health problems such as weakened muscles to high cholesterol. In addition, in severe conditions, a problematic thyroid can cause goiter, palpitations, and impaired memory recall.
7. Fighting free radicals
The content in seaweed is quite complete, starting from vitamins, minerals, and various important nutrients that the body needs. This content acts as an antioxidant that can protect the body from cell damage. These anti-oxidant compounds can help prevent the body from various health problems. such as heart disease and diabetes.
8. Maintain heart health
Seaweed also plays a role in maintaining heart health. The content of antioxidants plays an important role in preventing damage to body cells that trigger heart disease. In addition, potassium and fucan in seaweed can also reduce the risk of heart disease.
Benefit of Seaweed For Beauty
Besides being beneficial for health, seaweed is also efficacious for facial beauty. Launching from klikdokter.com, here are some of the benefits of seaweed for beauty.
1. Reduces hyperpigmentation
Hyperpigmentation is a condition when there are brownish black patches on the skin. This condition can cause skin tone to become uneven. A study published in Marine Drugs states that skin care containing seaweed extract can reduce hyperpigmentation.
2. Reduce wrinkles
A study that was conducted in South Korea in 2018 stated that seaweed can reduce wrinkles. This algae extract has anti-aging properties that can disguise wrinkles.
3. Make the skin more moist.
Another beauty benefit of seaweed is that it can moisturize the skin. Extracts of this plant can hydrate the skin and increase moisture levels on facial skin.
4. Relieve inflammation
This benefit is very useful for those of you who have sensitive skin. Seaweed extract is anti-inflammatory which is useful for treating skin inflammation.