What Are the Benefits of Bladderwrack?

The herb bladderwrack may have an unusual name, but provides numerous benefits to those who utilize this natural seaweed that grows along the northern coastlines of the United States, according to eVitmains. Bladderwrack contains a variety of properties that benefit health and wellness, including fucoidan, alginic acid and iodine. Iodine is especially important for thyroid function, which controls growth and development in infants and children. Understanding several benefits of taking bladderwrack may offer choices in natural, long-term health.

Skin Care

Bladderwrack powder is filled with minerals that help nourish and cleanse the skin of toxins that cause dryness, wrinkles and excess fluid retention, states From Nature With Love. The powder, which may be purchased from most natural food or health stores, may be added to bath water, soaps, wraps and to facial scrubs and salts for detoxification of the skin.

Thyroid Stimulation

Because bladderwrack contains iodine, it provides a variety of benefits for thyroid health. As a thyroid stimulating property, bladderwrack may also regulate thyroid function and metabolism, according to Herb Wisdom. Some individuals take bladderwrack to help treat cellulite as well as obesity, as the herb is known to increase metabolism.

Joint Pain Relief

Bladderwrack may also be used to help reduce inflammation and pain in joints caused by rheumatoid arthritis, in both internal and external forms of application and ingestion. Bladderwrack capsules or tablets may be purchased at most natural vitamin or health stores. The herb may also be purchased in raw form to create an infusion by brewing or steeping the herb in a quart of hot water, states Nutri-Herb. Components of bladderwrack such as carotene, fucoidan, mannitol and bromine offer vital nutrients to bone and joint health.

Digestion

Bladderwrack contains a fiber known as alginic acid, which aids digestion. Individuals may take bladderwrack to help relieve constipation or diarrhea. Some even take the herbal supplement for treatment of heartburn, states Nutri-Herb.

Lower Cancer Risk

Bladderwrack is filled with fucoidan, a type of fiber that may help lower cholesterol and glucose levels in some, states Nutri-Herb. Fucoidan is found in brown seaweed and is known to offer a variety of antitumor and antiangiogenic benefits, according to Sloan-Kettering. Fucoidan regulates the production of AP-I, which is necessary for cell growth and multiplication. Slowing down this function reduces cancer tumor growth and development.

Lower Bad Cholesterol

Fucoidan, found in bladderwrack is also believed to help reduce cholesterol levels, benefiting heart health, states Wellness 101. Bladderwrack can help maintain adequate levels of high density lipoproteins, or HDL for optimal vessel and heart health, function and wellness.