I want to show you two easy ways to add incredibly nutrient-rich food products to your diet.
The first one is Nutritional Yeast flakes, which are really rich in fibre, different B-vitamins and several essential minerals.
It might not look that appetising but it has a very pleasant cheesy and nutty taste (many vegans use it in place of cheese).
I also sprinkle it on top of bread with hummus and avocado.
If you don’t eat much fibre-rich food yet, then start using nutritional yeast in small amounts. It can cause some unpleasant digestive side effects (cramp/diarrhoea) otherwise.
You are doing your body a huge favour though by eating fibre-rich food (see A Healthy Gut).
Another way to add nutrient-rich food products, as well as a salty taste, to your diet is to use dried edible seaweed (sea vegetables). The most common ones are nori, wakame and kombu.
Edible seaweeds are also really healthy and again an excellent source of fibre, different vitamins and minerals – including iodine which is lacking in some people’s diet.
Vegans needs to be extra aware of getting enough iodine as the most common food sources for iodine is dairy products and fish like cod and tuna.
Your body needs iodine to make thyroid hormones. These hormones control the body’s metabolism and other important functions, such as growth and development.
It’s important to know though that too much iodine can cause thyroid problems, and have a negative effect on people with underlying thyroid problems.
There’s a huge variation of the amount of iodine in different types of edible seaweed. Kombu, which is an edible kelp, contains a huge amount of iodine and is best used in small amounts and only occasionally.
Nori and wakame contains much less iodine and is better to use on a more frequent basis.
I buy dried nori flakes and use it much the same way that I use nutritional yeast – sprinkled over a wide variety of food.
The salty taste means that I can reduce the salt in my food and combined with nutritional yeast, I get a kick of cheese flavour as well. Two truly healthy and tasty food products!
This is a link about Japanese iodine intake from edible seaweed (this will open a new window): https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3204293/