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If you’ve never heard of wolffia globosa before, you definitely aren’t alone. It’s a supplement with a somewhat strange name, and it isn’t found in most supermarkets or local grocery stores. Wolffia globosa is a new, up-and-coming ingredient that works in meals or as a supplement. Found in some Southeastern Asia dishes, this green plant isn’t very well-known worldwide just yet, but it’s beginning to catch on.
Wolffia globosa is gaining attention thanks to the green Mediterranean diet, the plant-focused twist on the traditional Mediterranean diet. Following the green Mediterranean diet includes drinking a smoothie made with wolffia globosa mixed in daily. Packed with nutrients and easy to mix with other foods, it makes for a highly healthy addition to any diet.
So, what is wolffia globosa exactly? It’s a plant that may be small yet holds a ton of possibility for your health and your nutrition.
A tiny edible plant with superfood potential
Wolffia globosa doesn’t look like much at first glance. As a variety of duckweed – which itself is a little green plant that floats on pond surfaces – it’s a tiny edible fruit. This bright green fruit is actually so small in size that it’s considered the world’s smallest flowering plant. It rarely grows any bigger than 0.2 millimeters in diameter, but it grows rapidly wherever it appears.
Also called Asian watermeal in some regions, wolffia globosa may be tiny, but it has some seriously impressive nutritional value. Research published in the journal Food Chemistry found that the little fruit is packed full of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. Wolffia globosa consists of more than 45 percent protein, and it offers a whopping 15 essential amino acids of different kinds. A typical 2/3 cup serving of this super fruit offers 5 grams of protein, 4 grams of fiber and just 45 calories. It almost defies its size with its plentiful nutrients.
Additional research found even more to love about this little plant: wolffia globosa is also high in calcium, magnesium, iron, selenium and manganese. Phytosterols, a nutrient that’s connected to cholesterol, are also present. And you can’t ignore how vitamin-rich wolffia globosa is. It contains vitamins A, E, B12 and B complex.
This fruit contains many of the vitamins and minerals you need on a daily basis, giving you a whole lot of nutritional value in a single serving. As a result, wolffia globosa could ultimately become a new superfood once it’s readily available.
Wolffia globosa could have big benefits for your health
Because wolffia globosa is such a nutrient-rich fruit, this little green plant can have a surprisingly significant impact on your health. Research is already showing that giving it a try can help you combat common ailments and health concerns.
Diabetes Care, the official journal of the American Diabetes Association, published research results that showed wolffia globosa can help glycemic control after eating carbohydrates. Those who consumed the duckweed plant for two weeks saw lower blood sugar peaks. When those peaks did occur, blood sugar managed to return to a normal level faster. This means wolffia globosa could benefit those who are at-risk for or already living with diabetes, as better glycemic control can help lessen potential health complications.
There’s also good news for liver health. Wolffia globosa can lower your risk for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, a condition in which fat starts increasing within the liver that can lead to dangerous complications like liver failure and liver inflammation. Researchers found that adding the plant into your diet in the form of a smoothie can reduce the amount of fat in the liver significantly. Some participants saw as much as a 96 percent reduction in their liver fat.
When incorporated into an overall healthy diet, wolffia globosa can help you potentially prevent future complications and problems. As a relatively newly-studied supplement, it’s a food that could prove even more beneficial as researchers learn more.
How to find and eat this tiny superfood
Wolffia globosa holds a lot of potential, both for your health and your diet. But what does it taste like? When it’s eaten alone, some say it tastes kind of like watercress.
Right now, the most common way to consume wolffia globosa is by adding it into a blended smoothie. Some companies have turned the tiny fruit into frozen cubes, which you can toss into your blender. Harvard University even recently started offering wolffia globosa smoothies at its School of Public Health cafeteria.
Yet wolffia globosa is also an ingredient you can also mix into other foods and recipes. In Southeast Asia, it’s an omelette ingredient. Companies and researchers are currently working on new ways to deliver this plant to homes everywhere. Modern Farmer reports that a startup named Green Onyx is turning duckweed into easy-to-make beverages and creating a machine that can grow the plant right on your kitchen counter. Mankai offers frozen cubes of the plant that are ready to blend into smoothies. Others are trying to find a way to mass produce wolffia globosa for all so it becomes more accessible.
If you’re ready to try wolffia globosa, finding a smoothie-ready supplement option online is your best bet for now. Over time, as this potential future superfood becomes increasingly well-known, it may be available in even easier-to-try forms.