First Do No Harm

Editor's note: This is an article written by a "user" of ECE. He did not put his name on it, nor did he copyright the article. We liked his objectivity and thoroughness, so we are republishing it here with only minor changes since the company he recommends no longer makes the product he mentions. He still recommends the older form, Algoran, so we had to do a tny edit.  

Anti-aging super supplement from seaweed

I believe this may be the most important supplement I have ever written about.  Its potential is that extreme.

There are a ton of nutritional supplements and I'm fond of saying that' I've never met one I didn't like.  I try lots of them.  I actually have to force myself to limit my intake.

Overall I look for supplements having proof they can improve

  • joint health

  • connective tissue and skin health

  • circulation

  • cellular health.

The above are important because they can affect our overall health, our sense of well-being, and how we look and feel compared to others our age.

The above, in my opinion, is the essence of anti-aging.  I have to do my part by taking care of myself, but supplements can be a big help, a real shortcut.



A person who feels really badly because they are sick or desperately out-of-shape usually isn't interested in anti-aging for the cosmetic stuff, they just want to feel better.

Anti-aging cosmetic stuff is okay, but the only things or changes that can make you genuinely look and feel better are lifestyle changes that affect us from the inside out.

Lifestyle changes include things most people don't want to do such as eating sensibly, exercising, and nowadays you can add spending money on worthwhile nutritional supplements to the list.

Supplements have grown in popularity because

  • They don't take any effort

  • There is a lot of research behind some of them.

  • The costs have gone down.

I don't believe in taking supplements unless you do the diet and exercise things because supplements are mainly a booster-shot to a healthy and fit lifestyle.

Anti-aging in a capsule

I'm a proponent of the anti-aging lifestyle that includes sensible nutrition, exercise, and supplements if you can afford them.

Antioxidants are a big part of an anti-aging strategy because they are good for us at the cellular level, and we can easily get them from eating fresh and natural food.  And we can get them from supplements.

Today I'm going to tell you about an antioxidant that comes from a particular species of seaweed. This stuff has the potential to:

  • keep us healthy

  • alleviate or fix some health problems

  • make us look younger

  • make us feel younger.

  • improve brain function and health.

Some folks have said this supplement has cured some rather significant problems.  Some say it worked so fast it was like magic.  That's anecdotal evidence rather something proven in a clinical setting, but people who get over health issues generally don't care how the solution came about. 

A very good thing about nutritional supplements in general is they don't have adverse side effects the way drugs do.

Unique about this supplement is that it can get to cells all over the body including the brain.

Cellular health is everything.  We are made of cells, and the more cells that are healthy the better we look and feel, and the longer we stay alive.

If you read the two articles preceding this one you have an idea about the role antioxidants have in health.  You may also recall that I said some antioxidants are much better than others.

This is one that I believe is in that "much better" category.

For more than five years I've performed two online brain tests nearly every night.  It only takes three or four minutes.  I had taken this supplement about two months when one of my test scores jumped to and has remained consistently higher than ever before.  In the other test my focus and reaction time have improved noticeably.  For what it's worth the test says my brain age is 21 (I'm 67).


Ecklonia Cava

Ecklonia Cava is a seaweed.  Its extract (ECE) contains fat-soluble polyphenols and phlorotannins.  What is important about those exotic sounding molecules is that they are shown in much research to deliver

  • antioxidant

  • curative

  • anti-aging, and

  • health benefits.

Fat-soluble antioxidants and other molecules are significant in that their half-lives are 12 hours.  That's meaningful if they are capable of doing the body good, because it means they can continue working for 24 hours.  Water-soluble antioxidants are good for about one hour.  That's a huge difference.

But even more valuable is that fat-soluble antioxidants can cross the blood-brain-barrier, which means they can enter the brain and affect the eyes and central nervous system.

The ability to cross the blood-brain barrier is the reason some drugs and supplements are able to claim they might improve conditions like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's, and perhaps even brain lesions.

Ecklonia Cava seaweed (also called algae) grows off the coasts of Japan, Korea, and China where people have eaten it for centuries.  So it begins life as an edible plant.

In the past decade or so much interest has focused on plants for their health promoting potential.  It is the polyphenols (remember that word from above?) that are said to contain the potent curative and health-promoting properties in plants.  Though most often you hear references to antioxidants rather than polyphenols.


Antioxidant refresher

  • Raw fruits and vegetables are better antioxidant sources than cooked and processed food, or supplements.

  • Food is always better than supplements.

  • Health-wise the research points to foods closer to fresh are eons ahead of processed, packaged, and fast food.

  • Packaged foods can be almost devoid of nutritional benefit, and their additives can be sources of free-radicals.

  • Antioxidant-rich fresh foods are just as available as processed food, just not quite as easy.


A word about getting fat

Poor nutrition is one theory behind chronic overeating.

A diet of processed, packaged, and fast foods can be desperately short on nutritional value.

Fat people obviously overeat, and generally they eat packaged, processed, junk-type food that has lots of calories but not much nutritional value.

In theory your body will keep telling you it is hungry if it is not getting the nutrition it needs.  That could be the reason that fat people on bad food say they are always hungry.

Makes sense. 


There are a few antioxidants that could be called super for their extreme antioxidant, curative, anti-aging, and health benefits.

Ecklonia Cava Extract (ECE) is relatively new to the US, but nearly $40 Million has been spent researching its potential.

Many health, longevity, anti-aging, and energy benefits are attributed to plants and extracts from plants. 

Getting those plant benefits by eating them is better than getting them from supplements.  But if you have to eat a massive quantity of the plant to get the benefits, supplements begin to make sense.

Here's the value of extracts:

Say that science discovered that a particular plant contains a component that has curative powers.  But there's just a tiny bit of the good stuff in a pound of plant. The solution is extracting the good stuff, but it might take a ton of plant material to extract one pound of the super-stuff.  You can imagine how potent the extract would be, and how expensive, too.

Extracts are great because it's easier to swallow a capsule than eat a pound of plant material. Even if a person is sick and doesn't have an appetite they can usually choke down a capsule.

So that's why supplements usually contain plant extracts rather than whole plants ground into powder.


Ecklonia Cava Extract

Ecklonia Cava Extract (ECE) has been sold in the U.S. for several years, but demand has begun taking off just recently.

I consider myself pretty much up on supplements but it was just a few months ago that I stumbled across ECE.  I added it to my regimen almost immediately.

The growing interest in ECE has spawned additional sellers and pushed down the price.  Not long ago the price was about three times what it is today.

ECE may become the super-supplement of this decade.  It is an impressive antioxidant, and its curative and anti-aging potential might prove to be even more spectacular.

  • (ECE) is extracted from seaweed (a water-based plant)

  • Polyphenols are the wonder properties of plants.

  • The polyphenols in Ecklonia Cava are phlorotannins whose unique structures give them biological abilities not found in land-based plants.

  • The ORAC value of ECE is several times that of other antioxidants.

  • ORAC means Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity and it puts a number on an antioxidant's ability to neutralize free radicals. More about ORAC.


Evaluating antioxidants

An antioxidant's chemical structure contains polyphenols that contain phenol structures (also called rings). These look more like stop signs that rings, but rings are what they are called and the more rings the more capacity the antioxidant is believed to have to absorb free radicals.

Powerful antioxidants can have four or six rings. Ecklonia Cava Extract has eight.  I've been told that ECE has more rings than any land-based plant extract.

Comparatively speaking, Resveratrol from red grapes, an extremely popular antioxidant said to have anti-aging powers, has a two-ring structure.

Unique to ECE is it contains phlorotannins (also see tannin). It is thought that phlorotannins protect plants against ultraviolet light, toxins, etc. that are also threats to people.

One medical practitioner that believes in the potential of ECE is Robert J. Rowen, MD, whose article you should read if ECE is making you curious about what it can do for you.


Buyer beware

While researching this article I uncovered a number of things that were disturbing.  I spent my past life writing marketing presentations and ad copy, and so I'm pretty good at spotting marketing babble and half-truths whose purpose is to dazzle the consumer.

But I found one product involved in hijacking another product's webpage so a consumer clicking on a buy link ended up buying the hijacker's product.  Good grief.

If you buy supplements, performing due-diligence is important to make sure you are buying the right stuff from a reputable source.  A major part of that is being able to interpret what is said on a product label.

This article will give you enough info to choose an Ecklonia Cava Extract on your own, but most of what we'll talk about applies to any supplement so it's good stuff to know.

Product potential

There's a ton of information and research about ECE, but rather than bombard you with every little detail I'm summarizing and if something piques your interest you can follow the links or do an online search.

For starters these are some research results from ECE:

  • Reduced the oxidants peroxynitrite and DPPH

  • Raised HDL (the good cholesterol)

  • Stopped oxidation of LDL (bad cholesterol)

  • Improved anti-inflammatory properties

  • Inhibited angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) which raises blood pressure.

  • Improved damaged arteries

  • Increased blood flow

  • Lowered triglycerides

  • Reduced vascular inflammation

  • Kept blood from clotting (clots cause strokes and heart attacks)

  • Prevented drowsiness while increasing alertness

  • Sharpened memory and focus

  • Improved Post Traumatic Stress symptoms

  • Reversed fat deposits in the liver and pancreas.

  • Inhibited beta-amyloid (plaque) deposits in the brain

  • In a human study average weight dropped approximately two and a half pounds in two weeks.

  • Performed equal to or better than Viagra

  • Can cause blood sugar to quickly normalize following a glucose-spiking meal

  • Ten to 100 times stronger than antioxidant vitamins C and E, the supplement Resveratrol, and natural foods like blueberries, pomegranates and green tea.

ECE has been shown to benefit these conditions

It is easy to doubt that one supplement can do so much. At this point some of the research has been with humans and much has been with animals, which is a normal testing scenario, but I should say that results on animals aren't guaranteed to cross over to humans.

However, Doctor Haengwoo Lee has been involved with more ECE research than anybody, and he is convinced it will have the same effects on humans as in animal studies.


Ecklonia Cava Extract sniff test

I could tell you which ECE product I think you should buy, but showing you the particulars of the products lets you control the decision making.

But I will say this: I almost believe that ECE is a supplement that almost everybody should take.  It looks that promising.

So what makes an ECE product worthwhile?  First of all you want  Ecklonia Cava Extract -- not the entire plant ground into powder.

ECE grows off the coasts of Japan, Korea and China.  An extraction process gets rid of the sea water, chemicals, plant materials and other gunk that has no value. The process yields pure Ecklonia Cava Extract -- it's not 100 percent pure, but the best products are more than 98 percent pure.

  • The extract must pass tests proving it is clean and safe for human consumption, and a legitimate brand name sold in the US is pretty much guaranteed safe because of restrictions placed on imports and processing facilities.   

  • Asian cultures have eaten ecklonia seaweed for centuries, and it's probably safe to say that a family chef's food preparation does not yield as "clean" a product as does the ECE extraction and processing.  So it's pretty safe right out of the water.

  • The Korean Food and Drug authorized Ecklonia Cava as a food product in 1971. Great piece of reading.  So if you think that eating seaweed is not something you could do, think again.


What's in a label

The extracted ECE raw material is sold in bulk to companies that can put it into their own branded bottles or in some cases sell it to other supplement makers.

Extraction companies and authorized resellers have various patents and trademarks. and so you will often see differently branded products showing the same trademarked name in the ingredients.  This happens when a company licenses its formula and name to a reseller. 

There are laws to ensure that products meet the specs stated on their labels. So if it says "98 percent pure" that's what it has to be. But there are some loopholes and tricks of the trade, some of which you'll see.


The Big Two

Right now there are two major players in the Ecklonia Cava product world.  You'll see one or both of the following names as the main ingredient in any product containing ECE:

  • Seanol

  • Ecklonia Cava Extract

Seanol is a registered trademark for an ECE that's used in many products regardless of the brand name on the front of the bottle. Seanol is just a trademarked name for an ECE product.. 

Ecklonia Cava Extract is the name.  Products containing this can also say anything on the front of the bottle.  Nobody has a trademark or exclusive use of the name Ecklonia Cava Extract.  It simply is what's in the bottle. 

The remainder of this article compares the above mentioned main ingredients and demonstrates important differences in products containing them.



I'm pretty sure that Seanol is the most widely-distributed ECE product in the US today.

When you see Seanol in the ingredients of a product it means that they get their ECE from Simply Healthy, which owns the Seanol name and imports the extract from a Korean extraction company (LiveChem) shipping documents.

Any US product using Seanol has to show the Seanol name and is not permitted to alter the Seanol itself, but they can add other ingredients to the capsule so that it might contain half Seanol and half whatever.

Seanol is a formula that I'll show you in a minute.


Ecklonia Cava Extract

There are two companies I know of that get their ECE from a source other than the Korean extractor just noted; they are Ford-Speranza Nutraceuticals (Canada) and Yafari (Indiana)

You will see "Ecklonia Cava Extract" as the ingredient of both companies' products. 

Yafari  owns the brand name Yafa Cava.  I don't know a whole bunch about the Yafari company other than what they say in their marketing, which is not very specific. Theirs was the first product I tried and I have spoken to the owner while researching this article. They say their product is 98 percent pure Ecklonia Cava Extract, with absolutely no fillers.  Their capsules contain 250mg ECE.

Ford-Speranza just one ECE product presently (05/01/12) containng a mega dose of ECE compared to all the other ECE products.  Ford-Speranza sent me its product assay and purity documents.

I don't know if Ford-Speranza and Yafari get their Ecklonia Cava Extract from the same source.  And I have not seen assays of any products other than Ford-Speranza's ECE.


The thing I look for in ECE products is how much Pure Ecklonia Cava Extract is in one capsule.

When a bottle gives a percentage and / or says Pure Ecklonia Cava Extract it should mean the extract has not been cut with anything so it retains the composition as in the lab assay.

Be advised that a product saying 100 percent Ecklonia Cava could mean the capsule contains all the parts of the plant ground together -- NOT the extract. This type of product should be labeled "complete plant."

If you see low-priced Ecklonia Cava make sure to read the label to see what it contains.  Make sure it is pure extract.

Pure extract versus added fillers

The Seanol name on a label is supposed to be followed by the designation P or F. 

The US distributor of Seanol says the extraction process used for its product yields a unique polyphenol complex and a specified molecular profile validated by HPLC (High Performance Liquid Chromatography) analysis.  It calls this extract Seanol-P; the P designates it as >95 percent pure phlorotannin (marine polyphenols) extract from Ecklonia Cava algae.  

They also say the Seanol-P molecular profile is the only form of extract from Ecklonia Cava that has been approved by the FDA as a New Dietary Ingredient.

The above are not my words.  In my opinion it is marketing gobbledygook.

Unless it has changed since I collected the information, Seanol-P is not available as the sole ingredient in a capsule.

Instead Seanol-F is in all the products showing Seanol in the ingredients -- even if the F is missing.

This is odd, but follow along.

Seanol-F is a blend of two ingredients

  • 13 percent Seanol-P

  • 87 percent dextrin.

Notice that Seanol-P (straight Seanol) is the source of Ecklonia Cava Extract in Seanol-F, but it's only 13 percent of the contents and the rest is Dextrin. 

So that means if you wanted to get 100mg of Seanol-P (their pure extract) it would require about 800mg of Seanol-F of which the majority would be dextrin.

It seemed odd that so little Seanol-P was going into a Seanol-F product, and so I asked why not just sell the more potent P version.

The answer came back that the more concentrated Seanol-P is often combined with other active ingredients to create new formulations, and it has been added to existing formulations to offer “new and improved” versions of those products.

I didn't quite get that so I asked why not just sell the P version by itself since that's the purest version.

I was told that Seanol-P should be mixed with other ingredients to enhance absorption.

So then I asked if there is an issue with Seanol-P's ability to be absorbed.

I was told there is not an absorption problem.

I'll get back to this in a little while.  But it was starting to seem to me they were skimping on the more expensive Seanol-P by adding the filler dextrin to create the Seanol-F product, which maybe they could get away with when there were no other ECE products being sold. 

The Plot Thickens

Comparing Seanol-containing products is easy because according to the literature they all contain Seanol-F whose main ingredient is Seanol-P that claims at least 95 percent pure polyphenol content containing a complex profile of 14 distinct polyphenol molecules.  What?

Tell me if I'm wrong, but isn't the above a mouthful? It's like impossible for the layperson to interpret. Though it might dazzle some people into thinking it must be very important since they can't understand it.

Here's what I find confusing.  Most Seanol products have around 53mg of ECE in one capsule while other ECE products contain 200mg and more pure Ecklonia Cava Extract in a single capsule.

I can't say for sure that Seanol is presented in that confusing context to dazzle consumers, but unless I really messed up the product is not much of a value.

One last thing.

To be fair a number of ECE products contain added ingredients  These can start out with Seanol-F or Ecklonia Cava Extract as the main ingredient.  Added ingredients can be good when they are known to help a particular condition.  I don't believe dextrin helps any condition.

Honest, I don't care which product you choose, but here is an overview of what is available.


Ecklonia Cava Extract products

All of these products, I believe, are worry-free as far as being clean and safe for human consumption, and not black-market or counterfeit.

ECE capsules in these products contain between 225mg and 400mg material depending on the brand.  Notice I just said they contain material not Ecklonia Cava Extract.

All these products contain some pure Ecklonia Cava Extract though it might be known by another name on the front of the label or in the ingredients -- Seanol, Yafa Cava, FibroBoost, etc. 

And note that the quantity of pure ECE in a capsule does not necessarily equate with the quantity of material in the capsule. 

Some products actually have very little pure ECE per capsule so do your due-diligence and don't just look at the price versus the mg and number capsules in a bottle.



From Advanced Bionutritionals
60 Capsules
400mg Seanol-F per capsule (53mg ECE)
Free shipping
Money back guarantee
Much information available on this site.  A disclaimer at the bottom of the linked page says: "Dr. Robert Rowen is compensated by Advanced Bionutritionals for his work in formulating and endorsing this product."  Some might view that as a negative, but I'd say are being honest.

Genuine Ecklonia Cava Extract

From Ford-Speranza Nutraceuticals
60 Capsules
300mg >98 percent pure Ecklonia Cava Extract per capsule
$39.95 plus shipping (discounts on quantities)

The company currently sells just this one product, but are working on additional products for specific uses, along with a version of the seaweed called Ecklonia Bicyclis which, according to research, is naturally targeted to go where it is needed in the body.

There is more information on the company website than all the other Ecklonia Cava sellers put together.

The American distributor is Simply the Best (the site/page will present the newer products as they arrive).



From Doctor's Best
90 Capsules
400mg Seanol=F per capsule  (53mg ECE)
$33.95 plus shipping

FibroBoost® is a licensed name / product.  FibroBoost contains  Seanol-F and no other ingredients. is a site I have used and recommended for many years. I-herb sells everything you can imagine. Not always the lowest price, but always close on price and their service is exceptional and it's easy to get free shipping that usually gets from California to Ohio in two to three days.  I trust them and sometimes paying a little more is worthwhile. This is the I-herb link to the FibroBoost product. You can get $5.00 off your first order by using this code HAY816

The FibroBoost name is owned by Fibronol, LLC and is a licensed product that can be sold by any company, but the FibroBoost name must appear. Check next entry.



From Nutricology
75 Capsules
400 mg Seanol-F (53mg ECE)
plus shipping from Nutricology

$26.08 plus shipping from -- Vitacost
You can get a $10 coupon for any purchase on this site, but you will need to send me your email address

Note:  This product contains same ingredients as preceding Doctor's Best product, but not the same number of capsules.



150 capsules
200mg Seanol plus added ingredients specific to Fibromyalgia.
$59.95 plus shipping

Lots of information on the Fibronol site  that is aimed at people having fibromyalgia, but the products (they have several) are applicable to nearly everybody.

Same bottle is $35.18 at this site.
You can get a $10 coupon for anything on this site, but you have to send me your email address


Yafa Cava

From Yafari
Ecklonia Cava Extract
30 capsules
250mg ECE per capsule
$26 plus shipping

There is not much detailed information on this site, but the owner of the company claimed in a conversation that his product had the most rings (9) of any he had ever seen.  I can't vouch for that, but I have no reason to think it's not accurate.  Their delivery time is very prompt and I believe they give free shipping to first-time customers.  We sent a test question to customer service and had a response in a few hours; that's nearly unheard of when contacting a brand these days.  Unfortunately they weren't so good after that. Yafari has several items containing ECE. Link to Yafa Cava product.

Note:  Amazon has some good deals, but I find it a difficult site to use because it is so vague on product descriptions (everything, not just supplements) and they are really just taking orders for other sellers.  That said, ten days ago it was possible to get three bottles of Doctor's Best FibroBoost for $89.85 delivered. So I guess that means Amazon is okay if you know what you want.


And the winner is

Ecklonia Cava Extract from Ford-Speranza Neutraceuticals is made using a cold water extraction process which preserves all the natural occurring components of the raw material, and it is 98.8% pure.  I know that for a fact.

The company's Algoran (Algoran is no longer produced, but they produce a pure ECE instead) products also contain more pure ECE than any other product I have seen.

For my part, until another company proves it has something better, I will use only Algoran (ECE) from Ford-Speranza at

For what it's worth, this nonprofit group in Minnesota has a site that is worth a look for the great health info / newsletter they provide.  The sole distributor in the US is Simply the Best (a non profit online store).

Finally, I pay for my Algoran (ECE), and I get zero from any Algoran (ECE) purchases you might make.  I recommend Algoran (ECE) even though I have affiliate agreements with other websites that give me a commission if you were to buy the other ECE brands  through links from my website.  I have never told anyone to buy anything because it will benefit me.  This is no different.

I believe Algoran (ECE) is the best product all around.  And I trust the company, which to me is huge.

Ecklonia Cava Extract just might be the super-supplement everybody hopes for, and you really ought to try it and see what happens.  It works fast for some, but I'd say give it at least two months.

+ + +

One thing to watch for. There are two species of Ecklonia algae or seaweed:

  • Ecklonia Cava -- This has the most wide-ranging potential for the healing of degenerative diseases along with antioxidants.

  • Ecklonia Bicyclis -- contains a greater variety of polyphenols making it even more desirable for its antioxidant abilities and is naturally targeted to locations needing it.

Both species in one supplement should make for a double whammy product unlike anything yet on the market.  It is not yet available, but Ford-Speranza is close to introducing such a supplement.


Additional Ecklonia Cava reading and resources


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