Sea Snack Statistics
The meat snacks industry is booming, according to statistics and experts. And with the growth in demand for healthier foods, the market for plant-based meat snacks is growing just as fast. For context, the plant-based meat market is expected to be worth $5 billion by 2020, according to Fast Company.
Even the Whole Foods Food Trends Report for 2019 expects plant-based meat snacks to take over. Companies are adding more plant variety to their meat snacks as replacements and alternatives, includes mushrooms, soy, chia, flax, beans and more.
One major unique addition is sea snacks, better known as seaweed, which is slowly growing in popularity as consumers learn of its well of nutri-benefits. Fast Company already estimates that sea snacks will make up 15% of that $5 billion meat snacks market value (or $750 million) by 2020.
The Health Benefits
In the past few years, seaweed has more than captivated the hearts of food and nutrition enthusiasts. Its nutri-benefits have been explored and found to be immense, hence the title of super food. It might not be the tastiest snack ever, but it sure is very nutritious and beneficial to the body.
Seaweed boosts immunity
It’s no surprise that communities that rely on seaweed as staple food have very strong immunities against common illnesses. Seaweed contains a number of antioxidants, including alginate and fucoxanthin, whose antioxidant abilities make them helpful for bodily protection against illnesses like cancer. There is also ongoing research on seaweed’s potential anti-inflammatory abilities, which if positive in the end, would render it beneficial for healing inflammations, wounds and muscle development.
Seaweed also has beneficial abilities for the thyroid gland, thanks to its iodine and amino acid compositions. The thyroid gland is essential in the production of numerous essential growth hormones. Consuming the sea snack also affords you more protection against cancer, thanks to its polyphenol composition.
Seaweed works wonders for skin protection and anti-aging
Seaweed has been found to have great benefits for the skin, whether ingested or topically applied. Its pool of mineral nutrients, including zinc, magnesium, potassium, sodium and calcium makes this possible through their healing, anti-inflammatory and skin protection abilities.
The latter includes protection from the sun’s excessive rays, which have been found to directly cause faster aging and wrinkling. Adding seaweed to your diet is therefore is a smart way to keep the sun’s UV rays out, along with sunscreen and big hats. Seaweed’s antioxidant abilities also facilitate the removal of toxins, radiation and heavy metals, from the body, all of which have been known to speed up aging.
Vitamin C in particular is helpful in the creation of collagen, which is the compound that keeps the skin taut and elastic. Niacin, another naturally-occurring nutrient in seaweed helps in the healing of blemishes and hyperpigmentation.
It helps with eyesight and stronger vision
Much like the way carrots work with vision, so does seaweed. Thanks to its high nutrient concentration, including Vitamin E but with a special nod to omega 3 fatty acids, seaweed is actually helpful in improving eyesight and vision when consumed regularly. Seaweed also contains the compound astaxanthin, known for its benefits to eye health.
Seaweed supports metabolism
Your body needs proper metabolism for regular function, energy provision and growth, and seaweed has the vast nutrient backing to help you with that. Soluble seaweed contains good amounts of fiber, which is known for its positive effects on bloating, easing digestion and preventing quick hunger.
It also facilitates the growth of good gut bacteria through the sulfated polysaccharides it releases into the gut. Good gut bacteria is important for better digestion and prevention of gut illnesses. The body’s GI tract cell lining also benefits from regular consumption of seaweed, thanks to the sea snack’s stimulation of the short chain fatty acids that nourish it.
It’s great for cognitive function
Because of its many nutrients and antioxidant concentrations, it’s no surprise that seaweed has actual benefits for your brain. Research shows that seaweed may have immense benefits for memory and brain performance when consumed on a regular basis.
Omega 3 fatty acids are regularly singled out for their positive effect on cognitive abilities, and seaweed is known to contain omega 3 fatty acids in beneficial amounts. In other words, get seaweed into your diet if you want to think faster, work smarter and boost your memory.
It strengthens the body’s bones and joints
The seaweed agar is already popular among food enthusiasts for being a good alternative in bone broth for vegetarian diets, but that’s not the only positive attribute.
Much like agar, many other varieties of seaweed contain both iron and calcium, which are essential to bones, nails and teeth formation, growth and development. The sea snack also contains a limited amount of omega-3 fatty acids, but they are still super beneficial for bone joints in the body.
It improves cardiovascular health
Seaweed may also have benefits for your heart. Thanks to rich fiber content, regular consumption can actually have good results for your body’s blood sugar levels. Fiber is known for its controlling abilities on bodily blood lipids, which indirectly controls blood sugar levels.
Types of Sea Snacks
With growing demand and increasing creativity among chefs, sea snacks are growing ever more innovative and unique. Some of the most popular sea snacks include kelp noodles, kelp jerkies made from ocean-farmed lattissima, algae tuna, water lily seed snacks, seaweed butter and more.
If you haven’t considered adding sea snacks to your diet, it’s not too late. With hundreds of nutrients and a variety of benefits, your body gets more than any fast food will give it.
Meat snacks may be taking over the snacks industry, but plant-based meat snacks, especially sea snacks, are already standing out for their unique taste and their nutria-benefits. Consider adding sea snacks to your diet today.