One of the revolutions in today’s cuisine, along with the introduction of insects, is the consumption of plankton. This represents a set of microorganisms found in water, about 200 meters deep.
Normally, it serves as food for some types of fish such as whales. However, it has begun to be introduced in the kitchen because it has nutrients that can benefit human health.
Plankton, a source of vitamins
Plankton is characterized by vitamin C and contain the E group. The former are closely related to immune function, according to a study published in 2016. In addition, they participate in iron metabolism, improving iron absorption. As if this were not enough, they have antioxidant capacity and stimulate collagen synthesis.
Vitamin E acts as a powerful antioxidant. Its consumption can help prevent and treat neurodegenerative processes such as Alzheimer’s, as stated in an article published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences . In addition, it can act as a cardioprotector against cardiovascular system pathologies due to its ability to reduce the oxidation rate of LDL lipoprotein.
Excellent organoleptic characteristics
On the other hand, plankton has organoleptic characteristics that make it a very useful ally in the kitchen. It is capable of providing a strong sea flavor, which makes it a sought-after product when it comes to enhancing the aromas of many preparations.
This is one of the reasons for its high price, which can be around 2,000 euros per kilogram. Fortunately, a few grams are enough to enrich the flavor of almost any preparation.
Source of protein and fatty acids
Plankton has a protein rich in essential amino acids, which conflicts with the traditional concept of vegetable protein. However, most of the composition of the product is water, so the protein intake is not comparable to that of an animal product.
On the other hand, it is rich in omega 3 fatty acids. Thanks to this nutrient, together with the contribution of vitamin E, plankton becomes a heart-healthy food.
However, the amounts of plankton used in culinary preparations are not high enough to benefit us from a large amount of these nutrients. So the power that this marine plant offers on health is quite limited.
Superfoods don’t exist
Although there are those who classify plankton as a superfood, the most current scientific currents deny the existence of this category.
No product is capable of preventing or curing disease by itself. Its performance depends on the rest of the foods that make up the diet. Thus, in order to experience the positive effects of any product, it is necessary to frame it within a varied and balanced diet.
Plankton, a rare food
Despite its organoleptic characteristics and its antioxidants and vitamins, plankton is a rare product in gastronomy today.
It is used in haute cuisine to add flavor and even color to certain culinary preparations. However, its high price makes it a food not very accessible for the vast majority of the population.
Despite everything, it is a product rich in nutrients and with a good antioxidant capacity. Its content in vitamin E and omega 3 fatty acids make it an ally of the cardiovascular system. However, these nutrients can be found in nature in a multitude of products, without the need to resort to plankton to guarantee their intake.
Remember that superfoods do not exist and that, to enjoy a good state of health, it is necessary to carry out healthy lifestyle habits. Among them, the varied and balanced diet stands out from the energy point of view.
Prioritizing fresh foods over processed foods will help reduce the risk of developing complex diseases. All this must be combined with the practice of physical exercise on a regular basis.