Now more than ever, we’re welcoming ways to support our health and wellbeing
In the last decade or so, looking after our health and wellbeing has become increasingly important. Exercise levels have increased, interest in veganism jumped seven fold in the years between 2014 and 2019, and terms like ‘self-care’ are more widely used than ever before.
But then 2020 happened, and our awareness of our own health reached new and unprecedented levels.
The COVID-19 pandemic has turned every aspect of society on its head, and it’s still ongoing. The threat the virus poses to our health has led to an even greater push to stay fit and healthy, as we wait for the vaccine to be rolled out across the country.
Particular focus has been placed on our immune systems, with researchers exploring various options in search of lifestyle changes that can give our immunity the boost it needs during this time. And because of this, a spotlight has been shone on seaweed.
One year of COVID-19
It’s no wonder that we are all more conscious of our health and immunity, as we approach the anniversary of COVID-19 in the UK. Between multiple lockdowns, business closures, NHS strain and forced isolation, the last 11 months or so have been extremely difficult for all of us.
In the UK alone, there have been more than 3.6 million COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic, with almost 100,000 lives lost as a result. Those who are most at risk of the virus are people with existing medical conditions and complications, and older adults over the age of 70; i.e. those with weaker or compromised immune systems.
Much of the research into the virus has focused on exploring the relationship it has with our immune systems. A stronger immune system will not prevent you from contracting COVID-19, but taking steps to boost your immune health can help to sustain your body and support your overall wellbeing.
This is where seaweed comes in. Research has been taking place to investigate the potential relationship between seaweed and our immunity.
Seaweed is not a new phenomenon
We talk about the benefits of seaweed a lot on our blog. In fact, we’re proud to say it’s our area of expertise. Regular readers will be familiar with our seaweed’s natural iodine levels, which contribute to healthy metabolism, thyroid function, cognitive function, skin health, nervous system function and more.
Although seaweed has been used for millennia as a nutrient-rich source of food, its status as a ‘superfood’ has been firmly established in recent year, causing a growing number of health-conscious people to show an interest in adding it to their nutrition plan. And with the ongoing pandemic, the value of a broad, balanced diet and sufficient vitamins and minerals is more relevant than ever.
Seaweed and your immunity
Several studies have been undertaken to explore whether there is any link between seaweed and supporting your health against COVID-19. Swansea University recently undertook research into a cost-effective nasal product from Boots: the Dual Defence Nasal Spray, to see if it could help protect against COVID-19 infection. Although the results aren’t scheduled to be published until March, the reason this spray was chosen for the study was because it contains seaweed as a key ingredient.
Another study, titled ‘The COVID-19 novel coronavirus pandemic 2020: seaweeds to the rescue?’ was also carried out last year and published in the Journal of Applied Phycology. As the title suggests, the study explored the connection between seaweed and immunity support in the wake of the pandemic. It concluded that many species of seaweed “contain significant quantities of complex structural sulphated polysaccharides” which have been shown to “inhibit the replication of enveloped viruses.”
What’s more, a study by the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute found that seaweed extracts were more effective in blocking the COVID-19 virus than remdesivir: the standard antiviral used to combat the disease at the time.
Along with seaweed, key vitamins like vitamin D and vitamin B12 have been under the spotlight in recent months for their potential role in boosting our immune systems. In fact, last year it was reported that more than 2.5 million vulnerable people in England would be receiving a free supply of vitamin D in order to boost their immune system against the virus.
Doctor Seaweed’s Weed & Wonderful Immunity+ supplements bring all the benefits of seaweed, vitamin D3 and vitamin B12 together in a single capsule, creating a simple way for you to support your immunity and overall wellness on a daily basis.