For centuries, people have used sea plants in their foods. Everyone has believed in their goodness. Kelp and Seaweed are the terms to describe sea plants. The two are often confused with one another but they have a vast difference among them.
Kelp vs Seaweed
The difference between kelp and seaweed is that the seaweed is a type of primitive sea plant belonging to the family of algae, there are around ten thousand species of seaweed, they are classified as paraphyletic, on the other hand, kelp is a type of seaweed, belonging to the family of brown algae, there are around 300 known species of kelp, they are classified as Laminaria.
Kelp is a type of seaweed or sea plant which belongs to the family of brown algae and is classified as Laminaria. Seaweed is a primitive type of sea plant that belongs to the family of algae and is classified as the paraphyletic.
Comparison Table Between Kelp and Seaweed
|Parameter of Comparison||Kelp||Seaweed|
|What it means||Kelp is a kind of large seaweed that belongs to the family of brown algae where they are classified as Laminaria.||Seaweed is a type of sea plant belonging to the family of algae, they are categorized as paraphyletic.|
|Known species||There are around three hundred known species from thirty genera of kelp.||There are around ten thousand known species of seaweed.|
|Classification||Kelp is itself a classification of seaweed but there are no sub-classifications of kelp.||Seaweeds are generally classified into three main subcategories, namely, red algae, brown algae and green algae.|
|Use as foods||Kelp is one of the most famous edible seaweed, it is also termed as Kombu. Kelp is used in making sushi, soups, salads, stews.||Seaweed due to its nutritional values became a popular food or supplement. They have a varying range of culinary uses. They make some popular snacks such as chips. They are used in the garnishing of salads, stir-fry dishes, rice dishes, etc.|
|Nutritional value||Kelp is rich in nutrients such as vitamins A, B-12, B-6, iron, copper, magnesium, niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, zinc, calcium, etc. Because of being nutrient-rich, they are often called a superfood.||Seaweeds are also nutrient-rich. Red seaweed like nori is the greatest source of protein among all the seaweeds. Another red seaweed Dulse, contains protein, vitamins A, B6, C and D. Seaweeds are also a rich source of fiber, antioxidants, omega 3.|
What is Kelp?
Kelp is the large seaweeds having the order of Laminaria. Kelp belongs to the family of brown algae. There are around three hundred known species of kelp that belong to the thirty genera.
Kelp grows in underwater kelp forests found in shallow oceans. They require a temperature in the range of 6 to 14 degrees Celsius and water rich in nutrients to grow and evolve. These types of seaweed are known for their high growth rates, some species of seaweed can grow up to half a meter a day. Most of the varieties of kelp are either flat or have a leaf-like structure which is named blades. They form elongated stems known as stipes.
Kelp is one of the most famous edible seaweed. This is also named as kombu. These are a rich source of vitamin A, B-12, B-6, iron, magnesium, zinc, calcium, etc. These are called a superfood because of their nutritional value. Kelp is used to make sushi, soups, salad, stews, etc.
What is Seaweed?
Seaweed is a type of sea plant of the order paraphyletic. Seaweed belongs to the family of algae. There are around ten thousand species of seaweed known to us. Seaweeds are classified into three categories namely, red algae, brown algae and green algae.
Seaweed requires seawater and sufficient sunlight to grow and carry out photosynthesis. They grow mostly in nearshore water and rocky shores. Seaweed body consists of an algal body, stipe which is sometimes absent, holdfast that provides attachment.
Seaweed is a complete food, however, they are sometimes taken as supplements and snacks. Seaweed is rich in vitamins, fiber, proteins, antioxidants, omega-3, etc. They are used in making chips, garnishing salads, rice dishes and stir fry dishes.
Main Differences Between Kelp and Seaweed
- Seaweed is a primitive type of sea plant which belongs to the family of algae whereas kelp is a kind of large seaweed that belongs to the family of brown algae.
- Kelp is categorized as Laminaria while seaweed is categorized as paraphyletic.
- There are around three hundred species of kelp known which belongs to the thirty genera, on the other hand, there are around ten thousand species of seaweed which are known.
- Seaweed is generally classified into three categories which are named as red algae, brown algae and green algae, on the other hand, Kelp is one of the subdivisions of the seaweed.
- Kelp grows mainly in underwater forests or kelp forests in shallow oceans forming ecological systems of its own, on the other hand, seaweed grows in seawater where they receive sufficient sunlight for photosynthesis.
- Seaweed is a popular superfood, however, kelp is the most edible seaweed which is also named as kombu.
- Kelp is used in making sushi, salad, soups, stews, etc whereas other seaweed is mostly used in the making of chips, rice dishes, etc.
- Kelp or brown algae is rich in vitamins A, B12, B6, iron, copper, magnesium, riboflavin, thiamine, zinc, calcium, etc, on the other hand, other seaweeds are rich in proteins, antioxidants, omega-3, etc.
It is important to understand the difference between the two terms because people often get confused between the two. The two may be the sea plants but they have many differences. One is from the family of algae and the other from the family of brown algae. One is classified as laminaria while the other is classified as paraphyletic.