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Seaweed Extract May Decrease Fat Intake By 75%

A study presented the week of March 22nd, 2010 at the American Chemical Society spring meeting in San Francisco may have found a new way to combat obesity.

Using an artificial gut, researchers found that fiber rich extracts from seaweed called alginates may reduce the uptake of fat by an amazing 75%.

Alginate is found in a variety of brown seaweeds and is similar to the cellulose found in plants.

According to the lead researcher of the study, Dr. Brownlee from Newcastle University, if alginate can be added to commonly eaten foods such as bread, yogurt and biscuits, it could result in nearly three quarters of the fat contained in meals to simply pass through the body.

This study is part of a three year project funded by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council. The overall goal of the project is to shed further light on the link between alginate and fat intake.

Seaweed is surprisingly good for a wide range of health benefits beyond weight management. Previous studies have linked seaweed extracts to improving blood sugar, lowering cholesterol, boosting immune system, alleviating joint pain, colon and liver health, and boosting the immune system.

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