Nori Nutrition and Comparison with Other Food Articles

Per serving 100g (Full size Nori 33 sheets)

Food name energy (kcal) Vegetable fiber  (g) mineral vitamin
Nori 188 36 280 2,400 11.4 2,300 0.69 2.33 210
Fresh Milk 67 0 110 150 Tr  38 0.04 0.15 1
Egg 151 0 51 130 1.8 150 0.06 0.43 0
Boiled spinach 25 3.6 69 490 0.9 450 0.05 0.11 19
Lemon fruit 26 Tr 7 100 0.1 1 0.04 0.02 50
Boiled soybeans 180 7 70 570 2 Tr 0.22 0.09 Tr
pork 263 0 4 310 0.3 6 0.69 0.15 1
Cow lever 132 0 5 300 4 1,100 0.22 3 30

Source: Japan Food Standard Ingredient Table 2010
Tr: stands for “Trifle”
Pork: loin, with lean and fat, raw

Nori contains various important nutrients to keep us healthy. 2 sheets of Nori nutrition provide daily values of fiber, mineral and vitamin (few types) for an adult. We present below 10 reasons to eat Nori.

10 Reasons to Add Nori to Your Daily Diet

1. Vitamin C for beautiful skin

About 10 sheets of toasted Nori contain 1.5 times more vitamin C than 1 mandarin orange. Vitamin C reduces melanin production, prevents skin spots and help fading spots. Another beneficiary is smoker who loses vitamin C continuously by nicotine. In general, vitamin C is not heat resistance and it is destroyed by heat cooking. However, vitamin C contained in Nori is heat resistant and help efficient vitamin C intake.

2. Dietary fiber cleans you out!

About 1/3 of Nori consists of dietary fiber (double of spinach). Fiber is known to help normalizing bowel movement, which leads; relieving constipation that many women often suffered, lowering blood cholesterol, preventing arteriosclerosis, diabetes, colon cancer and other geriatric diseases. Compared with the fiber contained in vegetables, Nori fiber is said to be softer (more flexible).  That aspect mitigates the fiber disadvantage to damage the stomach or intestinal wall. It is also said that softer fiber helps synthesizing vitamins by gut flora and removing harmful amines and metals in the intestine.

3. Nori for children

Nori contains 12 kinds of vitamins. A Child necessary daily intake of vitamin A is 500ug which 2 sheets of Nori can provide. Nori is recommended for your child who hesitates to eat sufficient vegetables.

4. Vitamin B1 and B2 recover fatigue

About 3 sheets of Nori contain vitamin B1 and B2 equivalent to pork shoulder loin (about 1 sliced meat / 30 g), which is an adult women’s recommended daily intake. Vitamin B1 and B2 can turn carbohydrates into energy efficiently, so taking those 3 together should help quick recovery from fatigue. We assume “Onigiri” (rice ball, carbohydrate with Nori, vitamin B1/B2 around) is a quite rationale and unique invention for Japanese. 

5. Iron for anemia

It is common to sat, iron for anemia, liver and spinach for iron. We would like to present new idea. 5 sheets of Nori contain equivalent amount of iron to; a slice of beef liver (about 40g), a bunch of boiled spinach, 8 bottles of milk (1 200cc), 1.7 eggs. Liver, spinach and Nori for iron.

6. Calcium reduces irritation

Nori is rich in minerals (especially calcium and iodine) which people today tend to lack. 2 sheets of Nori contain equivalent amount of calcium to 15cc milk, and 1/2 egg. Calcium not only builds strong bones but also prevents osteoporosis and relieves irritation. Sufficient calcium intake is highly recommended for a growing child and also during pregnancy.

7. Rich in EPA

Nori contains plentiful beta-carotene and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid). Beta-carotene is well known nutrient for cancer prevention. EPA is a fatty acid also contained in blue fish such as sardines and saury. It is one of the nutrient receives high attention recently as it reduces bad cholesterol and triglycerides (cause obesity) and help preventing lifestyle diseases.

8. Taurine prevents lifestyle diseases

Nori is also rich in taurine. Taurine reduces bad cholesterol. Less bad cholesterol should lead less possibility of hypertension, vascular disorders, cerebral thrombosis, myocardial infarction and heart failure. In addition, may work for hangover, chronic hepatitis, endometriosis, and diabetes.

9. Nori (Protein) and Wine/Beer

Do you know your liver consumes protein to process and breakdown alcohol to eliminate from your body? Taking protein with drink helps and enhances your liver function. Nori is rich in protein. Soy beans are well known but 2 sheets of Nori contain equivalent protein to 15g of boiled soybeans. Also above mentioned taurine supports your liver. Nori snack recipes are highly recommended with your wine/ beer.

10. Umami is origin of Japanese cuisine

Nori contains 3 Umami, glutamic acid (“Umami” flavor mainly contained in kelp), inosine acid (also “Umami” flavor contained in dried bonito flakes), and guanylic acid (another “Umami” flavor contained in shiitake mushroom broth). It is said that there is no other natural food contains all these 3 Umami but Nori. Nori is the product of natural resources of Japanese sea and sun, and composes core of Japanese cuisine. It explains why “Onigiri”, as simple as rice with Nori is delicious.

References: “The history of Nori“, “Nori unique trivial dictionary”