There are numerous articles, radio segments and studies that boast the many health benefits of seaweed and why taking a seaweed supplement is a great way to get seaweed in your diet. For anyone who picks up a seaweed supplement, many of the ingredients will make sense: Nori, Irish Moss, Omega 3 and 6, fucoidan. What may come as a surprise (or sound completely unfamiliar) is maerl. Here’s why maerl is found in high quality seaweed supplements.
What is Maerl?
Maerl is lime-producing red seaweeds. Also known as rhodolith, maerl is a collective name for non-geniculate coralline red algae. Living maerl is a purple-pink hard seaweed that forms spiky underwater ‘carpets’ on the seabed, known as ‘maerl beds’. On open coasts exposed to some waves, maerl grows as flattened discs. Where there’s less wave action, it often forms dense, branched, spiny nodules. Scotland is home to many of the most extensive maerl beds in Europe. It is promoted as a natural source of calcium for human consumption, in a form of supplements and food additives; it is used in cosmetics as well.
Why is maerl found in supplements?
As mentioned above, Maerl is a natural calcium source. Of all sources of calcium, it has one of the lowest levels of undesirable contaminants, and one of the highest levels of absorption. Maerl-based sea calcium is composed of a variety of important nutrients including calcium, magnesium, boron and zinc. It is the only natural source of calcium with a broad enough buffering range to insure an impressive rate of bioavailability and utilization.
Do I need calcium in a supplement?
Calcium absorption is highest during periods of high growth, such as childhood and during pregnancy, as growing bones increase demand for the mineral. Calcium absorption starts decreasing during adulthood and continues to decrease as we get older. Women, as they approach menopause, can begin to experience increased calcium loss from their bones because estrogen production is decreasing, which causes more bone breakdown. Having a natural calcium source such as maerl makes perfect sense in a seaweed supplement.
Not all seaweed supplements contain maerl, so be sure to read the label when shopping for a seaweed supplement to add to your health routine. Also look for other whole food ingredients to get the most nutrition possible. Farmasea’s Sea Veg is one such supplement. If you’re ready to try Sea Veg, take advantage of the new client offer. You’ll soon see the benefits of the product and will appreciate the importance of maerl in the product. Here’s to good health!