What is seaweed?

When you hear the term ‘seaweed’, it can be hard to work out what they actually are. For years we have seen seaweed as an extremely useful substance in various forms. Seaweed is the name that is used to cover all number of marine plant life and algae species. 

Seaweed, then, is a form of macro algae that is vital for safe living quality in the sea. It’s been a major part of human diets for a long time now, due to its incredible nutritional profile. Seaweed has been used for many years, with writing going back as far as the 5th Century for people using this kind of product. 

Seaweed comes in many forms, too, not least green, red, and brown seaweeds. Green seaweed is the most common that we know about, and has become a major part of plant-based life. In fact, some scientific studies reckon that green seaweed is the beginning of all land-based plant life.

The fact that the word ‘weed’ is in the name makes people think it’s dangerous or damaging in some way. However, that could not be further from the case. This is a major group of important plant species, all of which do a huge amount to help make life healthier and easier for everyone. If you eat enough seaweed, then you can enjoy a gluttony of health benefits due to their varied yet dense nutritional profile.

So, what is seaweed? It’s a vital building block of all aquatic life. If you believe some science, then it’s hard to imagine life itself without seaweed. It might not look great, but it’s a fantastic substance for long-term health care and management of your condition. 


Written by Jordan Prichard. Medically reviewed by Dr. Shane Jackson, MBBS. Last modified on 20/05/2020. 


Dr. Shane Jackson a UK based doctor, working within the NHS for 9 years. With experience in both Medicine and Surgery, his time is now spent mainly in Elderly care and Rehabilitation. Outside of his clinical work he has a strong educational presence, teaching undergraduates and foreign doctors wishing to work in the UK. He is passionate about the dissemination of healthcare for all, providing consultancy for health, well-being and biotech startups worldwide. Dr. Jackson is the founder of Acrosophy, which helps school leavers applying to medical, dental and associated courses at the top universities in the country. 

Feel free to connect with him on LinkedIn.

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