Rich in vitamins and minerals, seaweeds contain elements such as iodine and selenium that are not found in adequate amounts in land plants, according to Dr. Ryan Drum, a retired botany professor who lives on Waldron Island. Drum recommends incorporating small amounts of seaweed into diets. He leads classes and “seaweed safaris” in the San Juan Islands and sells kelp at ryandrum.com.
Of the 50 or 60 varieties of kelp, Drum prefers bullwhip kelp. “It’s easy to harvest, tastes the best, and it’s locally abundant,” he says. He sprinkles powdered kelp on oatmeal, pancakes and sandwiches — and raised three healthy children on it.