Fucoidan is a marine algal polysaccharide found in the cell walls of many brown seaweeds (kelps). It is mainly found in various species of brown algae and brown seaweed such as mozuku, kombu, limu moui, bladderwrack, wakame, and hijiki. Variant forms of fucoidan have also been found in animal species, including the sea cucumber. There are at least two distinct forms of fucoidan: F-fucoidan, which is 95% composed of sulfated esters of fucose, and U-fucoidan, which is approximately 20% glucuronic acid.
In recent years, scientific interest has intensified around fucoidan. Some studies have suggested that fucoidan may help promote healthy immune function. particularly the radioprotective effects of fucoidan may have on bone marrow cells (BMCs), which are the main cellular reservoir for the hematopoietic and immune system.
Many experts now believe fucoidan is one of the key nutrients responsible for the exceptionally long, healthy lives enjoyed in Okinawa, Japan, where fucoida is part of the daily diet and where there is the world's highest concentration of centenarians.
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