What is Sargassum?
Sargassum is a known as brown macroalgae which are found in the tropical oceans of the world. They are also called planktonic (free-floating species) which inhabits coral reefs and shallow water and are the genus of brown algae of sargassaceae family. These are small in size and have leaf-like toothed edges. Some of its species are reproduced sexually and pelagic species are reproducing by fragmentation. The term Sargassum was initiated by Portuguese sailors who found it in the Sargasso Sea. They are brown genus which may grow to a length of meters.
Sargassum has several uses which are very helpful in our routine life. So, following are the uses of sargassum which are as follows:-
- Source of agar: Sargassum is used for making agar which is obtained from several species. They are used in several ways for example, in preparation of jellies, ice cream, and other desserts. It can be also used for purifying liquids and in textile sizing. We can also use agar in preparing cosmetics, shoe polishes, shaving creams. It is also used by science students for media preparations.
- Medical use: Most of the seaweeds are salty in taste. The presence of iodine in sargassum is used for maintaining thyroid gland in our body. It helps in preventing goiter testicular pain and swelling. It helps in maintaining healthy blood sugar and blood pressure.
- Fertilizers: Various species of sargassum have potassium chloride; they are used for making fertilizers in different countries like US, Japan, South India, France, and England. In South India, these are used as manures for plantations of coconut. They are also used for producing various crops.
- Source of food: Sargassum is also used as a source of food such as food supplements, pills, seafood, rice, sauce, curries, vegetables, soups, and seasonings.
Sargassum nutritional value
Sargassum also has its own nutritional value. It has different nutrients like essential amino acids, minerals, carbohydrates, protein, cellulose, vitamins, carotenoids, and fatty acids. This nutrient supports antioxidant and antibacterial properties.
- Minerals: Different minerals like calcium, zinc, phosphorus, sodium, copper, etc are the main nutritive constituents of the body. The daily intake of iron, zinc helps in controlling anemia, high menstrual loss, and pregnancy.
- Fatty Acids: Sargassum also contains high concentrated saturated fatty acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids; even it has a low level of lipid.
- Amino acids: Sargassum also contains amino acids which have a high range of proteins. All essential amino acids like arginine, leucine, valine, tryptophan, lysine, etc.
- Vitamins: Sargassum is enriched with vitamins. Different vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K help in different ways. It may help in maintaining healthy bones, tissues, eye health, and healthy skin.
- Fertilizers: Organic fertilizers are produced for the cultivation of horticulture crops like kharif, rabi, zaid, food crops, and plantation.
- Food Products: Sargassum also helps in making food products which has their own nutritive value and composition. These products are prepared under hygienic conditions; it can be served as soups, salads, veggies, curries and many more.
- Gel form: Sargassum is also used as a gel form. This gel is used for the manufacturing of agricultural products.
- Snacks form: Sargassum is also available in snacks form. Different flavors of seaweed snacks are available online. It could be either in chips, nuggets, and sushi or in rice form.
- Plantation: You can use sargassum products as manures for plantation. It may help you in better yielding of plants and kitchen gardens. It provides you organic veggies and fruits.
Sargassum Health Benefits
Sargassum also helps in maintaining our health.
- Supports in blood pressure: Some species of sargassum helps in maintaining the blood pressure of the body. It keeps you healthy and active throughout the day.
- Supports thyroid health: Sargassum is rich in iodine, thus it helps in maintaining thyroid gland of the body. It also helps in preventing hypothyroidism.
- Anti-cancer health: Sargassum also helps in controlling cancer. It helps in the proliferation of anaplastic cells in the body.
- Acts as anti-coagulant property: It also helps in preventing coagulation as it helps in stopping blood from clotting.
- Maintains sugar levels in the body: Sargassum also helps in maintaining sugar levels in the body. When we add seaweed to our diet, it helps in improving blood sugar levels in our body.
- Helps in losing weight: Sargassum helps in reducing excessive fat from the body. It may help in delaying hunger and you can lose weight.