Kombu is a kelp, a brown seaweed used in Japanese diets. It may be purchased from supermarkets in the Asian food aisles or on the Internet. Kombu and other seaweed products are being currently being researched for their cancer-fighting agent called Lignans.
Choose your product. Kombu seaweed is rich in protein, calcium, iodine, magnesium, iron and folate. Kombu may be purchased in pre-packaged dried strips. Nori seaweed may be purchased in pre-toasted sheets and is most commonly used in sushi products. Both seaweed choices offer flavorful and healthy benefits. Wakame is another seaweed currently being examined for healthy benefits. The seaweeds have been noted for possibly reducing the risk of breast cancer and providing a boost to those suffering from an underactive thyroid.
Add seaweed to your diet. Kombu and Wakame seaweeds are easy to use. They are most commonly sold as dried strips. Boil a few strips in water to make a seaweed tea or broth. Another way to add seaweed to your diet is to add chopped strips into a pot of legumes, such as pinto beans, and simmer. The nori toasted sheets may be used to wrap around cooked shrimp, fish or chicken as well as in sushi recipes.
Use caution. As with any natural product, moderation is the key. Consult your doctor if you are pregnant or nursing or if you have a thyroid condition. Japanese nutrition is based on a balance of key diet choices, including soy. Just a little can go a long way.