You might still be wondering: why is there purple sea moss out there? How about gold sea moss? What are the differences, and does color affect the nutritional value or benefits from sea moss? Let’s get right down to these frequently asked questions on this superfood and its varying colors.
How Colors Generally Affect Plant Benefits
You might already be familiar with how orange and yellow produce like carrots, sweet potatoes, yellow peppers, bananas, oranges, and pineapples have their own unique benefits based on the tinge they have. They provide beta cryptothanxin, which supports intracellular communication and may even support heart health.
Blue and purple vegetables and fruits, on the other hand, are also plentiful, from purple cabbage and eggplant to blueberries and blackberries. They contain powerful antioxidants known as anthocyanins, which are thought to delay cellular aging and assist the heart through blocking blood clot formation.
What this means is differences in color can set fruits and vegetables apart. Case in point: sea moss.
The main answer to the question of why sea moss comes in different colors is simply this: Things in nature vary in size, color, and overall appearance, and often this is a good indicator of its pure, raw, unadulterated state. This is not to discount the existence of dyed items, though, including sea moss products, so it always boils down to doing your due diligence and knowing the quality and nature of the things you’re buying – or who you’re buying it from.
Purple and Gold Sea Moss
While there are thousands of species of this wonder marine organism today, there are two main types of sea moss that are commercially popular today: Genus gracilaria and Chondrus crispus.
While this is rather a minor technical error and a mistake surrounding the species’ botanical name, Genus gracilaria is often called “Irish moss” even if it doesn’t grow near Ireland. This might not be a deliberate error or something used for deception, but needs to be pointed out to set the difference between the two species.
- Genus gracilaria – This species typically exhibits a yellow golden color, although this can vary. You’ll find that this sea moss has a fingered, quite thin string look to it. A mix of darker colors might also be there, so it’s not a consistently golden color all around.
The main advantage of this species is its ability to grow year round, meaning it might be more readily available than the other. This information might help you in determining the price for the sea moss of this species that you’re getting.
- Chondrus crispus – This is the Irish moss that’s often promoted commercially, as well as Jamaican purple sea moss. This mainly comes with a purple color.
Irish moss banks on its rarity compared with Genus gracilaria. Since it’s harvested during the summer and grows only on rocks, it is difficult to duplicate, so there are less worries of getting fake or pool-grown Irish moss.
HOWEVER: It’s important to note that the color will not exactly determine the species of sea moss. Genus gracilaria can also come in purple, and it doesn’t make it Chondrus crispus or Irish moss. Both species can come in a wealth of colors, from yellow to blue to purple.
There’s even multicolored or full-spectrum sea moss available out there today, claimed to be harvested from the pristine Caribbean islands. It’s a combination of different colors, namely gold, purple, yellow, and green sea moss.
The color is typically “bleached” during the drying process from the sun, and harvesting and drying should be done carefully to retain the color. Due to this process, colorful sea moss is said to have a more prominent ocean smell.
Which Sea Moss to Buy?
The answer relates less to color than it does to quality. Whether you get either of the two species, you will be able to access the nutritional benefits. It’s just really a matter of availability in the highest quality possible or bioavailability, if you’re going for organic sea moss capsules.
As it contains 92 out of the 102 minerals that the human body needs, sea moss is perhaps as near to a miracle food as we can possibly have. A crucial consideration is it makes you feel when taken or used. Listen to your body and how the sea moss works for you.
Keep posted for more sea moss news, updates, and expert advice that can help you make informed choices around this superfood.