Photo: Alison Marras on Unsplash
Your thyroid gland is associated with the truth and the color aquamarine. The truth system represents your throat and the anatomy around it and is where your thyroid gland is found. Your thyroid gland releases hormones that affect most organs in your body. They also impact your metabolism, breathing, heart rate, nervous system, weight, body temperature, energy levels, and more. When levels of these hormones are low, your body’s processes can slow down, and weight gain, depression, constipation, fatigue, and other symptoms can occur. When levels are high, your body’s processes speed up, leading to anxiety, excess sweating, weight loss, insomnia, and other symptoms.
Sea vegetables (plants derived from the sea) can provide nourishment for the thyroid gland. They are rich in minerals like iodine. Iodine is necessary for your thyroid gland to function properly and, therefore, can help support the regulation of your metabolism. When you do not have adequate iodine in your diet, goiter, which is an enlargement of your thyroid gland, can occur.
Did you know?
- Iodine is a trace element found mostly in soil and water of coastal areas.
- Main dietary sources of iodine are seaweed and seafood.
- In most countries, salt fortification programs are needed to make sure iodine intake is sufficient, and this strategy is effective for preventing health problems related to iodine deficiency.
- Primary concerns of iodine deficiency include goiter, neurocognitive impairment, and hypothyroidism leading to cretinism (which can result in severely stunted physical and mental growth) in severe cases of maternal deficiency.
- Sea vegetables, like seaweed or edible algae, are a unique and rich source of iodine, and dried iodine contents range from around 16 ug/g in nori to more than 8,000 ug/g in kelp flakes. Japanese kombu contains about 2,353 ug/g, and wakame about 42 ug/g.
- Seaweed is not a typical component of the Western diet, unlike on the coast of many countries. It has been a staple in the Japanese diet for centuries where it has been linked to a reduced risk of hyperlipidemia, coronary heart disease, and metabolic syndrome, among other health benefits.
Sea vegetables that are most commonly eaten include nori, hijiki, wakame, arame, and kombu, all of which are Japanese. Dulse is of Gaelic origin.
Sea vegetables are foods that represent the truth, the color aquamarine, and support your thyroid gland. Examples include:
- Nori—famous for its role in making sushi rolls.
- Agar—a red algae.
- Dulse—soft and chewy texture and reddish-brown in color.
- Hijiki—which resembles small strands of black wiry pasta and has a strong flavor.
- Arame—a wiry, lacy sea vegetable that has a sweet, mild taste.
- Kelp—light brown to dark green and is often available in the form of flakes.
- Select sea vegetables sold in tightly sealed packages, and avoid those that appear to have excessive moisture. They are sold in a variety of forms, including sheets, flakes, or powders. Many varieties need to be soaked for 5 – 10 minutes before adding them to your meal, so make sure to follow the directions on the package. No cooking is required.
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