| lifestyle

Be sure to check out the benefits of our sea moss!

The Benefits

When made into a gelatin-like consistency and added to foods like your morning smoothie, sea moss can soothe the respiratory tract and digestive tract, says Foroutan. (It doesn’t have much flavor, so it should just contribute to creating a thick texture.) This might be due in part to the fact that, like aloe and okra, Irish moss is a mucilaginous food, which mucus-like texture (sticky, thick) can double as a remedy for irritation. This snotty-substance also dissolves in water, so sea moss can tend to act like a soluble fiber. Remember: soluble fibers dissolve in water and become a soft-gel that keeps you full and helps stool move through the GI tract.

Sea moss is also a prebiotic, which is a type of dietary fiber that’s essentially fertilizer for probiotics (healthy bacteria in your gut) and, thus, helps further support digestion.

Although low in calories—49 per 100g, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)—sea moss is loaded with key minerals such as folate, which is essential for prenatal health and development. It’s also high in iodine, which is “is important for promoting the development of normal breast tissue,” says Foroutan. “Iodine is [also] super fuel for the thyroid.” Iodine helps the thyroid run properly and make thyroid hormones, which regulate metabolism, encourage bone and brain development during pregnancy and infancy, among many other important functions, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). (Related: The Best Prenatal Vitamins, According to Ob-Gyns—Plus, Why You Need Them In the First Place)

Also, because sea moss is high in immune-boosting nutrients like iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc, it may also support the immune system and help you fight off cold and flu symptoms, adds Foroutan. One 2015 study on rats found that sea moss’ prebiotic effects improved their gut microbiome, which led to heightened immunity. (Speaking of which, did you know that your gut microbiome can also impact your happiness?)