The origin and much of Wakame seaweed’s history is found in Asia, particularly in Japan. Native to cold temperate seaside areas of Japan, Korea, and China, in recent years wakame has actually ended up being developed in temperate regions worldwide, consisting of New Zealand, the United States, Belgium, France, Great Britain, Spain, Italy, Argentina, Australia and Mexico.

How is Wakame Farmed?

Wakame cultivation was first studied at Dalian, northeast China, by Japanese scholar Youshiro Ohtsuki who patented cultivation methods in 1943. Since the mid-1960s wakame seaweed has been extensively farmed there at an industrial level, but it can likewise be collected from the wild. In the Republic of Korea, growing of wakame began in 1964, and was mostly developed, promoted and industrialised throughout the 1970s, at that stage accounting for 30% of seaweed farming production in 2013.

In China, extensive production started in the mid-1980s, predominantly in 2 northern provinces which have actually because become the main wakame producers worldwide. Consumption of this macroalgae as a seafood is divided in two categories; the processed midribs are taken in inside China, while the sporophylls and blades are mainly exported to Japan and other Asian countries.

In 1983, wakame farming was intentionally presented into the North Atlantic in the coastal locations of Brittany and initially cultivated at three sites. Wakame growing is also being developed in Northwest Spain.

Coming closer to house, in 2010, the New Zealand federal government authorized commercial harvest and farming of wakame under specific conditions– simply put, that it be harvested from a manufactured structure. There is still much work to be performed in this area as a few of the New Zealand policies are obsoleted and complicated. The more we discover wakame, the easier this should become.

Wakame as an ‚Intrusive Types‘– aka a ‚weed‘!

Remarkably, wakame has been considered a poisonous intrusive seaweed in countries besides those where it is thought about to be native. It is thought that wakame was first introduced to foreign waters through the ballast water of freight ships from Asia, as the spores (gametophytes) contained in the water can endure long-distance journeys.

In New Zealand, wakame was in fact declared an unwanted organism in 2000 under the Biosecurity Act 1993. It was first discovered in Wellington Harbour in 1987 and it is thought it likely gotten here in our water as hull fouling on shipping or fishing vessels from Asia. Wakame is now found throughout our marine environment in New Zealand, from Stewart Island to as far north as Karikari Peninsula. Although it is an invasive seaweed, in 2012 the federal government allowed for the farming of wakame in Wellington, Marlborough and Banks Peninsula.

Wakame spreads in 2 methods: naturally, through the countless microscopic spores released by each fertile organism, and through human activities, a lot of frequently through the hull of shipping vessels or marine farming equipment. It is a highly successful and fertile types, that makes it a major invader. Nevertheless, its impacts are not well understood and can vary depending on the location.

Is Wakame a Pal or Enemy?

So as we find out about wakame, do we see it as a friend or enemy? The disadvantage of wakame is that it is intrusive and can change the structure of environments, specifically in locations where native seaweeds are missing. By forming a thick canopy, it shades the sub-canopy, and can affect the development of slower-growing native seaweed types. For example, in New Zealand the native coralline algae which are essential for paua (edible marine snail) settlement were partially displaced by wakame, resulting in reduced paua quantities.

Moreover, this intrusive seaweed can impact not only the biodiversity of plants, however likewise the fauna neighborhoods which are based on these phytogroups. Wakame can grow on reefs which use havens for fish, and gradually lead to habitat loss of fishes that harp on the reefs. Studies performed in the Nuevo Gulf showed that the removal of wakame from invaded websites led to an increase in the biodiversity at those places.

Research study shows that the wakame seaweed or sea vegetable has the possible to end up being a problem for marine farms because it increases labour and harvesting costs, due to fish cages, oyster racks, scallop bags and mussel ropes ending up being covered. This development can likewise restrict water circulation through cages.

On the other hand, Pacific Harvest is proud to use a tidy, fairly harvested wild wakame, which is largely healthy and advantageous for health. The accountable harvesting and suitable drying of wakame, and subsequent use of it as an exceptionally advantageous kitchen pantry staple, implies we rid our oceans of a ‚bug‘, lower expenses of obliteration, and add to a circular economy. [2]

Wakame Nutrition Facts

One serving of wakame (2 tablespoons or 10g) offers 4.5 calories, 0.3 g of protein, 0.9 g of carbohydrates, and 0.1 g of fat. Wakame is an outstanding source of iodine, manganese, magnesium, and calcium. This nutrition details is supplied by the USDA.

  • Calories: 4.5
  • Fat: 0.1 g
  • Sodium: 87mg
  • Carbohydrates: 0.9 g
  • Fiber: 0.1 g
  • Sugars: 0.1 g
  • Protein: 0.3 g
  • Manganese: 0.14 mg
  • Magnesium: 10.7 mg
  • Calcium: 15mg
  • Folate: 19.6 mcg


Wakame, like all seaweed, is really low in carbs. A typical serving measuring 2 tablespoons offers less than 1 gram of carbohydrates. However even a more significant 1/2 cup (100-gram) serving supplies only about 9 grams of carbs. Most of the carbohydrate is starch. There is less than 1 gram of fiber and less than 1 gram of sugar in a serving of wakame.

The estimated glycemic load of wakame is no if your serving size is 2 tablespoons. The 100-gram serving has a glycemic load of 4, making it a low glycemic food.


There is practically no fat in wakame seaweed. Even the bigger serving has less than 1 gram of fat, and the majority of that is healthy polyunsaturated fat.


Wakame can increase the protein material of your favorite soup, salad or entree, depending upon just how much you use. A little serving has less than 1 gram of protein, but the larger 100-gram serving offers 3 grams of protein.

Vitamins and Minerals

Wakame is a good source of iodine, offering about 42 micrograms per gram of seaweed. A 2-tablespoon serving would offer 420 micrograms of iodine, or nearly three times the suggested day-to-day consumption for grownups.2 Other minerals in wakame consist of manganese, magnesium, and calcium.

Wakame also offers vitamins. Each 2-tablespoon serving of wakame provides 5% of your recommended day-to-day intake of folate. It likewise provides smaller amounts of vitamin C, vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin E, and pantothenic acid.


One 10-gram serving of wakame offers 4.5 calories, making wakame a low-calorie food.


Wakame is a low-calorie and mineral-rich food that provides manganese, magnesium, and calcium. It supplies minimal carbohydrates, protein, and fat, however boasts healthy levels of fucoxanthin and iodine. [3]

What research study says?

Wakame is high in vitamins, minerals and other important nutrients. It is a low-calorie, low-cholesterol, low-fat food containing a sensible quantity of fucoxanthin, a marine carotenoid with anti-inflammatory and anti-proliferative residential or commercial properties. The majority of its health benefits come from the rich supply of minerals and vitamins in its delicate green leaves, which benefit one’s health.

Similar to other seaweeds, wakame is low in carbs. In 100 grams of raw wakame seaweed, 9.14 grams of carbs are present, mainly from starch and fibre. Furthermore, wakame is a non-starchy veggie that can also suit the ketogenic diet. As per research study, Wakame’s glycemic index (GI) is low at simply 4 in 100 grams serving, making it ideal for people with diabetes.

There is a trace of fat in 100 grams of Wakame seaweed, and the fat material of Wakame is 0.64 grams per 100 grams. And the fat is mainly healthy poly-unsaturated fat (0.218 grams).

Research shows that the protein content of wakame is fairly high compared to other seaweeds (3.03 grams per 100 grams). For that reason, wakame can improve the protein material of your favourite soup, salad or entree, depending upon just how much you use.

Data reveals that wakame is high in a number of micronutrients, with niacin (1.6 mg), potassium (314 mg), magnesium (107 mg), sodium (872 mg), beta-carotene (216 µg), and folate (196 µg) topping the list.

Besides the nutrients pointed out above, it includes a small quantity of pantothenic acid, magnesium and potassium. Both potassium and magnesium contribute to lowering your blood pressure. In addition, potassium counters the impacts of high sodium in the blood with urination and assists release tension in the blood vessels.

Due to the high amount of sodium, wakame is a great source of iodine, providing more than the advised daily consumption for grownups.


Health Advantages of Wakame Seaweed

Rich in Antioxidant

Research study suggests that antioxidants boost the immune system, preserve nerve cells and keep the blood vessels healthy. In addition, they neutralise complimentary radicals that cause oxidative cell damage and protect the body versus macular degeneration and illness like heart problem and cancer.

Wakame seaweed is high in antioxidants such as fucoxanthin, the main carotenoid in brown algae. Studies show that it has 13.5 times the antioxidant potential of vitamin E. In terms of cellular membrane protection, fucoxanthin exceeds vitamin A. While the body doesn’t constantly take in fucoxanthin well, consuming it along with fat can assist.

Wakame consists of a range of important phytochemicals, including flavonoids, folate and beta-carotene, along with antioxidant vitamins A, C, and K. According to studies, they likewise safeguard the cells in your body from totally free radical damage. Nevertheless, these advantages still require more research study due to the fact that there is not enough human study to support these assertions. But, at the same time, specialists think that consuming wakame has no adverse effects and you can draw out fucoxanthin quickly from wakame.

Skin and Hair Care

Wakame offers numerous essential elements, including vitamin C, needed for the function of many body functions. Wakame supplies 3 mg of vitamin C in 100 g. In addition, studies show that wakame seaweeds help produce collagen, a component of skin tissue made use of for making and fixing harmed skin and organ tissues. The antioxidants in wakame help revitalize, moisturise, and smoothen the skin. In addition, it assists thicken hair and nails by contributing to keratin synthesis.

Routine intake of wakame prevents early signs of ageing, such as scars, blemishes, wrinkles, and age spots, due to adequate quantities of minerals, antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, protein, vitamins, and dietary fibre.


Wakame’s anti-oxidants defend the body from oxidative tension and unsteady particles known as free radicals. Wakame is also abundant in omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce general inflammation. These inflammations can cause persistent illnesses like heart problem, diabetes, and digestive concerns. Additionally, wakame includes polyphenols, which act as anti-inflammatory and antioxidant representatives that lower the danger of diseases like cancer, cardiovascular disease, and swelling.

Assists in Weight Reduction

According to the study, fucoxanthin, a carotenoid discovered in wakame, assist in controlling fat deposition and triglycerides. The compound also assists individuals slim down. Fucoxanthin likewise helps in reducing white adipose (fatty) tissue efficiently. However, most of research study on wakame and weight-loss is animal-based. But, research studies reveal that fucoxanthin increases fat oxidation in overweight mice, especially damaging stubborn belly fat. Fucoxanthin is identified for its fat-burning capabilities because it prevents fat formation in cells and accelerates fat oxidation.

Controls Thyroid Hormones

Thyroid hormonal agents aid in growth, metabolic process, protein synthesis, and cell repair, control metabolism and are necessary for brain advancement during pregnancy and infancy.

Iodine is necessary for thyroid gland function. Wakame is an excellent source of iodine, with an average of about 42 micrograms per gram. Research suggests that iodine intake for adults must be 150 micrograms each day. In addition, a number of research studies prove that regular intake of wakame seaweeds favorably associates with healthy thyroid function. Nevertheless, research studies also reveal that extreme usage may have hazardous impacts.

Keep in mind that inadequate iodine can elevate TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormonal agent), causing goitre or an enlarged thyroid gland. It’s usually the preliminary sign of hypothyroidism. Based on research study, a deficiency in this important micronutrient can cause hypothyroidism, a disorder in which your thyroid can not produce enough thyroid hormone to support regular function. In addition, iodine shortage shows symptoms like weight gain, tiredness, loss of hair, and dry, cracked skin. However, people with hypo or hyperthyroidism need to seek advice from a physician before consuming wakame or seaweed.

Decreases the Danger of Diabetes

Fucoxanthin exerts an anti-diabetic result in overweight people. An animal research study discovered that wakame lipids reduce hyperglycemia, hyperinsulinemia, or hyperleptinemia. Even in humans, wakame’s fucoxanthin has shown an anti-diabetic effect. However, it requires more human research.

A research study discovered that consuming wakame can assist stabilize blood sugar and insulin levels given that it contains 107 mg of magnesium. Research study also shows that regular intake of wakame may assist prevent prediabetes. In addition, research recommends that the dietary lipids in wakame help address insulin resistance triggered by a high-fat diet plan. So if you’re trying to find a diabetic-friendly food, wakame is an exceptional alternative to consist of.

Anti-Cancer Residences

Wakame has abundant fucoidan, a bioactive sulfated polysaccharide. As per research, fucoidan offers numerous helpful homes, including antioxidant and antiviral homes. Wakame’s most well-known health advantages are suppressing cancer cell development and expansion. In addition, researchers found that fucoidan from wakame had anti-cancer properties. Fucoidan’s sulphate content is accountable for its anti-cancer properties.

Iodine in wakame seaweeds also help in cancer cell death or apoptosis. However, excessive iodine intake might have adverse results such as thyrotoxicosis.

Wakame can likewise assist control the inflammatory response in cancer clients. Hence, it is a component in some anti-inflammatory medications. Nevertheless, some studies show contradictory outcomes. For instance, as per a study, increased seaweed usage results in a greater risk of thyroid cancer, potentially due to too much iodine. However, it needs more research study to see how wakame impacts human cancer cell production.

Minimize Cholesterol Levels

Cholesterol contributes in multiple aspects of health, from hormone generation to fat absorption. In contrast, excess cholesterol levels can obstruct arteries and lower blood flow, increasing cardiac arrest and stroke chances. Nevertheless, wakame can assist lower cholesterol and increase heart health.

According to a study, the fucoxanthin in wakame induces the liver to produce more DHA, a kind of fat that decreases LDL (bad) cholesterol. Despite these promising outcomes, limited to animal studies, extra research study requires discovering how wakame can affect human cholesterol levels.

Enhances the Bones

Calcium maintains the strength and integrity of our bones. The high calcium material (150 mg) in 100g of wakame aids bone growth and repair.

Wakame likewise consists of a considerable quantity of vitamin K, which benefits bone health, bone metabolism, and general wellness. It also helps maintain calcium in the bone matrix by raising protein levels. According to research study, increased vitamin K consumption assists reduce fractures and bone loss.

Wakame likewise functions as an anti-inflammatory due to omega-3 and polyphenols, avoiding joint inflammation and keeping you healthy and active far into old age.

Boosts Energy

Wakame includes an affordable amount of carbs (9.14 g), proteins (3.03 g), and iron (2.18 mg), which helps enhance energy. In addition, the high magnesium content (107 mg) of wakame aids in transforming dietary carbs into energy. As a result, magnesium can assist effectively transfer energy and produce and utilise protein, which is necessary for every physical function connected with advancement and repair. For that reason, getting appropriate magnesium through wakame can help in keeping energy levels and prevent fatigue.

Reduce High Blood Pressure Levels

High blood pressure impacts the heart and blood arteries, weakening heart muscle and increasing the danger of heart problem. According to specific studies, including wakame in your diet can assist lower high blood pressure and enhance heart health.

According to animal research studies, wakame extracts can substantially decrease angiotensin I-converting enzyme activity (ACE), linked to hypertension advancement. Additionally, wakame also reduces systolic blood pressure when given in single or numerous doses. However, further human research study is required to figure out how wakame impacts high blood pressure in the more comprehensive population.


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