18 Sea Moss Benefits for Your Health & Wellness
Last updated on January 12th, 2023
Following the recent TikTok trend and the endorsements from numerous celebrities, sea moss is having a moment in the spotlight. Whether in gel, capsules, gummies, powder, or dried, the red seaweed, scientifically known as Chondrus crispus, is on the top shelf of every organic food and health supplement store.
But this rising popularity also comes with its own share of myths and hoaxes. Sea moss is now claimed to be a natural remedy for anything, including obesity, diabetes, cancer, infertility, anxiety, depression, skin aging, and hair loss, to name but a few.
Before choosing to add a new ingredient to your healthy lifestyle, it’s essential to understand its benefits and potential side effects. It’s the only way to weigh the pros and cons and decide for yourself if this alga deserves a place in your diet.
So, what is sea moss exactly? Why has it become so popular lately? Most importantly, what are its actual benefits for health?
What is Sea Moss?
Scientifically known as Chondrus Crispus, sea moss is a type of red seaweed that naturally grows along the rocky Atlantic Coasts. Primarily harvested in Ireland, the Caribbeans, Jamaica, and Northern America, it's been used in traditional medicine for centuries.
Depending on where it grows, its color may vary from light golden yellow to dark brown, passing by shades of purple, pink, or green.
Related article: The differences between gold, purple, and green sea moss.
But what’s most important about sea moss and the reasons behind its health benefits are the incredible nutrient variety and density it contains.
Nutrition facts, minerals, and vitamins
Sea moss is believed to potentially contain 92 of the 102 nutrients the human body needs to function. Because of its exceptionally high concentration of minerals and vitamins, nutritionists consider this alga one of the best superfoods to supplement our bodies.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture FoodData Central released the final nutritional data for Irish sea moss in 2018. According to its findings, one serving of sea moss (10 grams, about two tablespoons) contains a significant amount of the following 12 essential minerals:
- Calcium: 7.2 mg
- Copper: 0.02 mg
- Iodine: 47 µg
- Iron: 0.89 mg
- Manganese: 0.037 mg
- Magnesium: 14.4 mg
- Phosphorus: 15.7 mg
- Potassium: 6.3 mg
- Selenium: 0.07 µg
- Sodium: 6.7 mg
- Sulfur: data not found
- Zinc: 0.195 mg
Additionally, one serving of sea moss is a great source of vitamins and provides your body with (on average):
- Vitamin C: 0.3 mg
- Vitamin A: 11.8 IU
- Vitamin E: 0.087 mg
- Vitamin K: 0.5 µg
- Vitamin B6: 0.007 mg
- Thiamin (Vitamin B1): 0.002 mg
- Niacin (Vitamin B3): 0.059 mg
- Riboflavin (Vitamin B2): 0.047 mg
- Vitamin B9 (folate): 18.2 µg
- Pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5): 0.018 mg
- Choline (similar to vitamin B complex): 1.29 mg
- Beta Carotene (converted into vitamin A by the body): 7.1 µg
Related article: The complete list of minerals and vitamins in sea moss.
Another interesting nutrition fact about sea moss is that while it contains so many nutrients, the alga is very low in calories, sugars, and fats, as well as high in dietary fibers, making it a super healthy food to incorporate into a nutritionally balanced diet. One serving of sea moss (2 tablespoons) contains approximately:
- Calories: 4.9
- Fat: 0.016 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
- Sodium: 6.7 mg
- Carbohydrates: 1.23 g
- Fiber: 0.25 g
- Sugar: 0.061 g
- Protein: 0.25 g
Related article: Zoom in on sea moss actual nutrition facts.
Warning about fake sea moss
The presence and quantity of each nutrient found in sea moss depend on each plant and the environment in which it has grown. Unfortunately, the U.S. market is flooded with fake sea moss grown in industrial pools instead of harvested in its natural habitat.
Pool-grown sea moss contains much fewer minerals and vitamins than wildcrafted ones. As a result, it has very low nutritional value and limited, if not inexistent, health benefits. So make sure you only purchase wildcrafted sea moss from trusted companies.
Related article: What’s the difference between real and fake sea moss?
18 Benefits of Sea Moss
The list of sea moss benefits for health and wellness is quite extensive. The alga contains such a high density and diversity of nutrients that it can positively impact many different parts of our body and mind.
While only some of its claimed benefits are scientifically backed up, we've put together this non-exhaustive list of 18 sea moss's most valuable benefits for your health.
Among its numerous benefits for health, consuming sea moss regularly strengthens the immune system. It’s been used by the Irish and British as a preventive natural remedy for flu-like viruses for centuries.
One study was conducted on Atlantic salmons and found that fish that eat sea moss have a stronger immune system than those that don't. Another one led by Tamama K. from the International Life Sciences Institute about the potential benefits of dietary seaweeds as protection against the COVID-19 virus in 2021, clearly showed that the seaweed-rich diet in Japan helps prevent Covid viral infections by reinforcing the immune system.
Seaweeds, in general, and sea moss, particularly, are packed with nutrients, vitamins,antioxidants, and minerals such as zinc and iron, with powerful immunity-boosting properties.
Taking two tablespoons of sea moss gel daily during autumn and winter is of great help to reinforce your immune system and go through these seasons virus-free!
Related article: Is sea moss effective against Covid-19 and viral infections?
2. Weight loss
Supporting weight loss is another great benefit of sea moss and one of the many reasons behind its popularity. Numerous studies have already linked edible seaweed consumption to weight management, so there are no surprises here. But looking deeper at sea moss’s compounds, it’s like a super potent version of seaweed for weight loss.
First, it’s very rich in dietary fibers, which helps regulate the appetite and stay full to preventovereating. Additionally, sea moss is a natural fat burner that helps break down and metabolize fat. It's also proven excellent for gut health and acts like a prebiotic to rebalance the gut microbiome and accelerate weight loss.
Last but not least, it’s a zero-calorie ingredient with very little fat and no sugar, so you can safely take it daily or add it to any of your favorite weight-loss smoothie recipes.
Related article: The right way to use sea moss for weight loss.
3. Thyroid support
Thyroid support is an important benefit of sea moss. Like most kinds of seafood and sea vegetables, Chondrus crispus is rich in iodine.
Iodine is an essential mineral for thyroid support, but the body can’t make it on its own, so its needs to be brought by foods and supplements.
Iodine is used to produce thyroid hormones and regulate metabolism (the conversion of food into energy for cell growth and function). Therefore, iodine deficiency can have severe consequences on one's health and affect the muscles, heart, liver, kidney, and other organs. That's why table salts sold in the U.S.A. are supplemented with iodine.
Sea moss is one of the natural ingredients with the highest iodine content. As a result, it greatly supports thyroid function and improves overall health.
Warning: Always stick to the recommended dosage of sea moss. Too much iodine could have opposite effects and be dangerous for your health.
4. Heart health
You've probably heard before that seaweeds are heart-healthy foods. Well, sea moss is an excellent superfood in that sense, and promoting heart health is perhaps one of its most valuable benefits.
Heart diseases are most commonly caused by high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high cholesterol, and being overweight. By acting on all these four factors simultaneously, sea moss considerably helps reduce the risks of heart attacks and diseases. We’ll detail a bit more below.
5. Blood pressure
How sea moss lowers blood pressure ultimately comes down to substituting your table salt and increasing your heart-healthy minerals intake.
High blood pressure or hypertension is related to two main nutritional issues: too much sodium and not enough potassium.
Sea moss is a crucial ingredient here. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, one serving of sea moss (2 tbsp / 10g) contains, on average, 6.7 mg of sodium and 6.3 mg of potassium. In contrast, the same serving of table salt contains more than 8,000 mg of sodium and close to 0 mg of potassium.
Substituting sea moss for table salt within a healthy diet rebalances the sodium/potassium ratio, which considerably helps lower blood pressure.
We recently received a promising testimony from one of our customers, Nathaniel O., who has been taking our organic sea moss for three months. He stated that his blood pressure has “lowered tremendously.”
Related article: Why is sea moss good for blood pressure and heart health?
6. Blood sugar and diabetes
While studies are still lacking on the exact effects of sea moss on diabetes, preventing type 2 diabetes, lowering blood sugar levels, and decreasing insulin resistance are some of the most promising benefits of sea moss currently under investigation.
Studies have already found that including seaweed as part of a nutritionally balanced diet helps support blood sugar management, lowers blood sugar levels, and reduces the risks of type 2 diabetes. This is partly thanks to natural compounds like carotenoid and fucoxanthin that are found in significant quantities in sea moss.
Besides, sea moss’s high fiber content also plays an important part in lowering blood sugar because it slows down digestion and helps prevent overeating.
Last, sea moss contains no sugar, so it can safely be incorporated into your favorite diabetes-friendly food or drink recipes!
Related article: Is sea moss good for diabetes and blood sugar?
7. Gut health
Gut health is another great benefit of taking sea moss regularly. Sea moss is considered a prebiotic. While probiotics are live bacteria found in foods, prebiotics are mostly fibers that feed your good gut bacteria.
By providing prebiotic fibers to your gut microbiota, sea moss helps crowd out the undesired ones and ultimately promotes superior gut health.
A well-balanced gut microbiome has numerous positive impacts on your overall health and wellness, including reducing chronic pain and inflammation, improving mental health and sleep quality, supporting weight loss, decreasing fatigue, and even preventing cancers, diabetes, and heart diseases.
Related article: Does sea moss make you poop more?
Simply add two tablespoons of sea moss gel to your daily routine!
8. Energy boost
Because sea moss is so rich in vitamins and minerals, it’s an excellent source of energy, and energy-boosting counts as one of its many health benefits.
There are about 20.5 kJ (kilojoule) of energy in 10 grams of sea moss. As a comparison, asingle espresso shot contains about 16 kJ. But unlike with coffee, the energy in sea moss is natural and does not cause any drowsy effect afterward.
Our energy level is directly linked to our food, especially energy-boosting nutrients such as vitamin B, vitamin D, magnesium, iron, potassium, and omega-3.
One serving of sea moss contains more magnesium than a banana! It’s also packed with iron, potassium, omega 3, and 13 essential vitamins, including the ones from the B complex.
Taking sea moss is like taking multivitamins and supplements for energy but more naturally and less expensively.
Related article: How does sea moss give you more energy?
9. Skin benefits
A well-known benefit of sea moss is skin health and appearance. When you consume sea moss orally or apply its gel topically, skin benefits start appearing.
Sea moss is a great skin moisturizer that deeply nourishes the skin with essential nutrients. As a result, your skin quickly becomes clearer and healthier. It's also known as a potent anti-aging ingredient for the skin. It acts as a tightening agent and prevents the signs of aging like wrinkles and loss of elasticity, sometimes even being referred to as the best plant-based source of collagen.
Related article: What are sea moss benefits for your skin?
10. Hair growth
You can also use sea moss for your hair, especially if you suffer from hair loss. You may have already noticed that some hair growth products contain seaweed extracts! That’s because research has found that seaweeds promote hair growth.
Sea moss's high Vitamin E content also helps combat oxidative stress, the primary underlying cause of hair loss.
Additionally, sea moss gel can be used as a natural conditioner that leaves your hair smooth, shiny, revived, and healthy! Sea moss consumers usually report noticeable changes within a few weeks only.
Related article: 6 benefits of sea moss for your hair.
In the Caribbean region, sea moss has been used to treat fertility issues in men and women for centuries. Besides cultural beliefs and consumers’ testimonials, the claims about Irish moss being a female fertility booster primarily rest upon four nutrients that are scientifically proven to improve women's fertility: folate, iodine, zinc, and iron.
Regarding male fertility, sea moss is believed to increase libido, enhance sexual desire, improve erectile function, and increase sperm count and quality.
Related article: How does sea moss help with fertility in men and women?
12. Sex benefits
Staying on a similar topic, one surprising sea moss benefit is its capacity to improve your sexual life! In the Caribbean region, especially Jamaica, sea moss is a potent sex elixir.
It increases testosterone levels in men, reduces erectile dysfunction, boosts sex drive, gives more energy for sex, and reduces stress and anxiety in bed.
While these benefits aren't all backed up by science, consumers' testimonials are numerous. And like with most natural aphrodisiacs, if you believe sea moss has sexual benefits, it will probably work for you. But, on the other hand, if you don't believe in it, you may not want to bother trying…
Related article: How can sea moss improve your sexual life?
13. Women’s health
When it comes to women, the list of sea moss benefits is long. It covers fields as diverse as menstrual cycle, period cramps, hormonal balance, fertility, mental health, skin and hair beauty, weight loss, or even libido! That’s why Chondrus Crispus is often referred to as a “women’s superfood”!
Besides the benefits we’ve already detailed above, sea moss is a great supplement to help regulate women’s menstrual cycles. Its nutrients help with hormonal balance and participate in period cramp relief by supplementing the body during menstruation.
Another great benefit of sea moss for women is its incredible number of pregnancy-supporting micro and macronutrients. It’s similar to prenatal vitamins in many ways.
Related article: Top 10 Benefits of Sea Moss for Women
14. Mental health
Not only is sea moss good for your body, but it’s also good for your mind and considered a brain superfood!
Again, it all comes down to the nutrients it contains. This seaweed is packed with potassium, antioxidants, flavonoids, and omega-3, making it one of the best mood-uplifting foods you can have, like chocolate, bananas, berries, and others.
Consuming sea moss regularly may also help reduce stress, anxiety, and depression naturally. While the impacts of sea moss on mental health still need to be researched, two promising studies about similar seaweeds have already shown impressive results.
The first one found that Chlorella seaweed helped improve physical and cognitive symptoms of depression and anxiety. The second one, a major study about seaweeds and depression, was published in 2019 and revealed “a clear relationship between a higher seaweed intake and a lower incidence of depressive symptoms in Japanese adults.”
Related article: Does sea moss help with anxiety and depression?
15. Sleep quality
Sea moss naturally contains sleep-aiding and relaxing minerals like Omega-3, magnesium, potassium, and calcium that can help fight sleep disorders and their resulting chronic fatigue. It can be a gentle and natural alternative to sleeping pills that often cause strong side effects.
Try taking two tablespoons of sea moss gel in the evening before bedtime. You can mix them in a calming and relaxing infusion, for example. Then, see if you sleep better and feel more recharged the next day.
Related article: Should you take sea moss in the morning or evening?
16. Respiratory health and lung function
Sea moss also has numerous benefits for respiratory health and lung function. The Irish and British have used it for centuries to prevent and treat respiratory conditions, colds, and mucus problems.
Its high content of omega-3, chlorophyll, and potassium makes it acts like a decongestant to soothe the bronchial system. Irish moss cough syrup is a popular flu-season remedy in Northern Europe to relieve pain, inflammation, and irritation of the airways. But thanks to its immune-boosting and antiviral properties, it does not only combat mucus and clear the airways but also helps treat the root causes.
Chondrus crispus strengthens lung function and significantly improves breathing capacities. Its high iodine content may even be recommended for certain forms of COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and certain chronic respiratory conditions in children..
Related article: How does sea moss help with mucus and phlegm?
17. Muscle building and recovery
Bodybuilders and athletes also commonly use sea moss for muscle-building and workout recovery benefits. Its high content of vitamins B2, B9, and B12 boost red blood cell reproduction, increasing oxygen and nutrient delivery to the muscles that can build and repair faster and more efficiently.
In addition, sea moss has high taurine levels, the second most abundant amino acid in the muscles after glutamine. Taurine increases men’s muscle mass, strength, and power. It also reduces muscle damage and micro tears caused by exercising and accelerates the recovery process between workout sessions.
Simply try adding two tablespoons of sea moss gel to your post-workout protein smoothies and shakes!
Related article: 6 benefits of sea moss for men!
Claims about sea moss being able to help prevent all kinds of cancer are numerous, but science is still lacking on this topic, and there's no sufficient evidence to support these.
One study conducted in Japan found that the regular consumption of bladderwrack, a type of brown seaweed similar to sea moss, may have anti-estrogenic effects that reduce the risks of estrogen-related cancers..
But more human studies are needed to confirm the potential role of sea moss in cancer prevention and treatment. We'll make sure to keep this article updated with the newest information available.
Sea Moss Side Effects
Like with any other foods or supplements, side effects also need to be considered. Fortunately, sea moss is generally considered a safe ingredient with few side effects.
Still, we believe you should be aware of them before introducing sea moss into your new healthy diet and lifestyle. Common and mild side effects include:
- Feeling gassy or bloated
- Feeling full or loss of appetite
- Mild laxative effect
- Skin reactions when applied topically
Related article: The truth about sea moss side effects.
Although rarely, sea moss may also cause the following mild or severe side effects: headaches, vomiting, low blood pressure, high blood pressure, low blood sugar, fatigue, hyperthyroidism, iodine poisoning, heavy metal intoxication, allergic reactions, etc.
Last, the most dangerous side effect of taking sea moss is iodine poisoning. However, it can only occur if you ingest excessive amounts of sea moss (more than 20 times the daily recommended dosage).
Related article: How much sea moss should you take daily?
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