Get all the facts about sea moss and why it's a great addition to your daily routine in less than eight minutes.
Sea moss is not just a common seafood for Caribbeans. It's a precious commodity!
You may have heard from a certain singing, Jamaican-accented crab that “The seaweed is always greener in somebody else's lake.” But you don’t need a musical crustacean to tell you that sea vegetables have many benefits and a long history in Caribbean cuisine. One of the popular ones is sea moss - yes, the same one Kim K. “discovered” a few years ago.
Sea moss is not just a common seafood for Caribbeans. It's a precious commodity, and we’re diving deep into the sea of information available about it to give you the 4-1-1.
Also known as Irish Moss, this spiny seaweed is a species of algae that grows abundantly along the rocky parts of the North American coasts, including the Caribbean. When fresh, sea moss is soft and cartilaginous, showing off an array of colors and tints from chartreuse through crimson, dubonnet, and mahogany.
But its colorful variations aren’t what makes it a coveted Caribbean commodity. It’s an acclaimed superfood.
Caribbean people have used sea moss for decades as a food thickener in stews, smoothies, and punches, as it becomes a soft gel when soaked and blended. But what nutritional value does sea moss have?
While many believe in the superfood powers of sea moss, researchers and scientists have yet to find a solid list of benefits. True, there’s lots of research on the perks of consuming seaweed, but Caribbean sea moss has not yet had its day in “Dieticians Digest.”
So, why do so many people consider sea moss so precious? Because it does have a few benefits that scientists can point to, based on its location, texture, and botanical properties.
What are the benefits of sea moss?
Like other red seaweeds, Irish Moss has many vitamins and minerals, including fiber, zinc, magnesium, phosphorous, and iron. It’s a vegan, gluten-free source of many other nutrients, including vitamin B2, vitamin B12, and calcium. Sea moss is also full of antioxidants, which help protect your cells from disease-causing oxidative damage. Plus, just as other sea vegetables are a naturally good source of iodine, sea moss also contains this micronutrient that can help support good thyroid health.
Some studies have shown that sea moss can also improve immunity and gut health and can potentially improve heart health as it contains nutrients that can help reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol and acts as a blood thinner, which may help reduce the risk of heart disease. But, of course, we couldn’t share a list of potential benefits of sea moss without mentioning the one thing Caribbean people believe it’s perfect for - stamina. When mixed with other ingredients like flaxseeds, oats, and milk, the Irish Moss drink is often said to be an aphrodisiac for men.
Some people even claim it increases fertility in women. While it would be great to have a superfood that gives you super fertility, many studies show that the nutrients found in sea moss as similar to those found in other seaweeds that support overall health, which can facilitate better conditions for conception. So, sea moss on its own does not directly impact fertility. But feel free to keep the traditions alive!
Why add sea moss to your diet?
Like anything else, when used in moderation, sea moss has several excellent uses. As it is a good source of vitamins and minerals for overall health, sea moss gummies or capsules are considered good daily supplements.
You can also use sea moss to thicken foods as it contains carrageenan, a thickening agent that manufacturers use in foods like ice cream, cottage cheese, nondairy milk, and even baby formula.
When prepared as a gel, you can add it to sauces, fruit purees, and smoothies for an additional nutrient boost without changing the flavor of your favorite foods.
Where can you get real sea moss?
Many stores across North America offer sea moss in its natural form or as its by-products, but to get real Caribbean sea moss, it’s best to turn to the islands. In Jamaica and Trinidad alone, several brands are harvesting sea moss and creating gels, supplements, and skincare products.
Some of these include Natural Pearls of Jamaica, which packages purple and gold sea moss and creates gels perfect for adding to your favorite foods. Or Rheborn Holistic’s Vegan Sea Moss Gummies are excellent for immunity, energy, better digestion, and thyroid support. Another innovative brand making waves with its creations is SeamossByJC, which produces sorrel-infused sea moss gel and a sea moss face mask that helps plump up the skin and reduces the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, blemishes, and pigmentation.
Otherwise, to get your hands on other flavored sea moss gels like those infused with guava, mango, pineapple, passion fruit, or elderberry, check with Powerhouse Sea Moss. Even Boss Pepper Sauce from Trinidad is riding the sea moss wave by blending it into their classic pepper sauces, including the Ichor and Original recipes. Also from the Twin Isle is Ai Naturals, which has a Sea Moss Salts Soap that helps with psoriasis, eczema, and acne.
It’s safe to say that Caribbean people are actively adding sea moss to a whole slew of food and skincare products. Are you looking for an easy and fast way to get authentic sea moss straight from the islands? No need to get your snorkeling gear. Look no further than caribshopper.com. We have the perfect collection of Caribbean sea moss makers who harvest, package, and ship seas moss or its by-products directly to your home anywhere in the USA or Canada.