The average omega-3 intake in Japan is better than 7 times the amount of Americans, and it's not entirely from fish consumption. Japanese sea vegetables are a low calorie source of EPA and DHA, most B vitamins, calcium, copper, iodine, magneseium, manganese, potassium, zinc, vitamins A, C, and K. Most varieties also provide compounds found in flax seed that are linked to decreased cancer risk and lower LDL levels. These underwater vegetables contain their own unique phytonutrients and antioxidants that help lower the risk of heart disease and many different cancers. Some varieties are used in Sushi rolls, but most can be used in a variety of other ways. Here are some examples:
Nori is a thin, crunchy variety that be sliced into strips and added to salads or used to wrap vegetables or avocado for a quick snack.
Kombu is a type of seaweed mainly used for stocks to add a fish flavor in vegan items that aim to mimic seafood.
Arame is used in savory dishes such as stews, or steamed and served with rice, chick peas, or stir-fried tofu.
Dulse is available dried and provides a cheesy flavor that can be used as a salad topper or eaten straight from the bag as a snack.
Beware of seaweed salads served in some Japanese restaurants - they have been found to be very high in added fats and sugars.