Food Engineer


Unsurprisingly, we are increasingly thinking about countless issues involving each of the products we consume. Is the product organic and not genetically modified? Is it vegan? Does it have high bioavailability of its nutrients? Does its extraction/manufacturing process respects the environment?

With the increasing replacement of calcium from animal and mineral origin by vegetable sources, Lithothamnion seaweed has proven to be an innovative ingredient, with numerous benefits, being a natural source of minerals, especially calcium.

This product, derived from seaweed, is mainly used in supplements, whether for the treatment and prevention of osteoporosis, or for increasing immunity; for muscle health; for joint pain and general well-being. It is also widely used in cosmetics, food and beverage enrichment, among many other applications.

Lithothamnion sp. is a calcareous algae of the Corallinacea family, belonging to the group of red algae. Calcareous algae are the organisms that most accumulate calcium carbonate in their interior, being composed, in addition to calcium and magnesium carbonate, by more than 70 other minerals that the human body needs, such as iron (Fe), boron (B), potassium (K), manganese (Mn), zinc (Zn), molybdenum (Mo), silicon (Si), phosphorus (P) and strontium (Sr).

The extraction of Lithothamnion is done in a sustainable way, and only non-living algae are collected, contributing to the maintenance of live marine algae and the ecosystem where they are inserted. Lithothamnion is also characterized by being a 100% natural, vegan, organic and non-genetically modified product.

The consumption of only 3g of Lithothamnion guarantees approximately 95% of the daily intake of calcium recommended and 33% of daily magnesium requirements. These two elements, so necessary for the proper functioning of the human body, are the basis of this food complex.



3g of Lithothamnion

DV *

Calcium (Ca)

946,5 mg

94,65 %

Magnesium (Mg)

86,85 mg

33,40 %

* Daily reference values based on RDC No. 269, of September 22, 2005 (BRASIL).

The nutrients present in Lithothamnion have high bioavailability, highlighting the high absorption of calcium by our body. The bioavailability of calcium present in Lithothamnion is greater than 86%, while calcium from oysters and calcium carbonate from mineral sources, for example, have approximately 27 and 70%, respectively.




Lithothamnion (vegetable source)

86,70 %

Dolomite (mineral source)

69,70 %

Oyster shell (animal source)

27,40 %

Source: Soriani MF, Teixeira MM. Avaliação in vitro da biodisponibilidade de íons de cálcio em preparação comercial do Concentrado Mineral marinho - CMM produzido a partir de algas calcárias. 2012. Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais. Instituto de Ciências Biológicas. Belo Horizonte - Minas Gerais.

The consumption of food supplements with Lithothamnion in the form of powder, capsules or tablets, is an alternative that brings comfort and practicality in the consumption of different nutrients and guarantees the ingestion in adequate dosages. Researches indicates that the general population cannot meet daily calcium recommendations, regardless of age group, and this type of product can help fight these deficiencies.

Lithothamnion is an excellent choice for enriching foods and beverages as it does not add any flavor or odor; it does not contain anti-nutritional factors and has irrelevant fat and calorie content.

Due to its neutrality, it allows the application in many different segments of the food industry, such as:

- Dairy-free products: powdered and liquid vegetable drinks, vegetable ice creams and yogurts, vegan chocolates;
- Confectionery and bakery products, cereals and snacks;
- Gluten-free products, such as pasta, bread and snacks;
- Processed meats;
- Meat analogue;
- Products for specific diets: pregnant women, children and the elderly;
- Functional drinks.

Lithothamnion still has several important technological benefits: improved texture, color, flavor and shelf life of baked goods; reduction of breakage and adhesion in cereals and pasta; in addition to contributing to the stability of emulsions.

On the rise in the market, with the astronomical growth in recent years in the food segment, vegetable milks are an example of the application of Lithothamnion that provides several advantages over its “traditional” competitor, cow's milk. Used for many years in vegetable drinks produced in Europe, Lithothamnion enrichment of these herbal drinks produces a much more complete, nutritious and sustainable food, as well as 100% vegetable. Only 0.35% of Lithothamnion in the product formulation makes vegetable milk equal to cow's milk in the amount of calcium, for example, in addition to being a plant-derived calcium, which has greater bioavailability than that of animal origin. It also provides other minerals such as magnesium, selenium, zinc and iron, all naturally present in Lithothamnion seaweed.

Due to its abrasive property, Lithothamnion is also widely used in gels and creams, often applied in anti-cellulite treatment and for exfoliation. Other applications observed are in bath salts and face masks.
Litholife offers the product in natura and in powder form in different particle sizes (mainly 325, 400 and 550 mesh). It does not have genetically modified organisms; it has Halal, Kosher and organic certification; it is extracted in a sustainable way and is a vegan and allergen-free product. Litholife is USDA organic certified and FDA registered.

Litholife, a Brazilian company located in Joinville, SC, benefits and commercializes the natural mineral complex Lithothamnion as the company seeks to provide natural ingredients in a simple way, based on what the sea offers us, providing health and well-being.


References: ASLAM MN, BHAGAVATHULA N, PARUCHURI T, HU X, CHAKRABARTY S, VARANI J. Growth-inhibitory effects of a mineralized extract from the red marine algae, Lithothamnion calcareum, on Ca(2+)-sensitive and Ca(2+)-resistant human colon carcinoma cells. Cancer Lett. 2009 Oct 8;283(2):186-92. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2009.03.037. Epub 2009 Apr 24. PMID: 19394137; PMCID: PMC2770718. ASLAM MN, BERGIN I, JEPSEN K, KREIDER JM, GRAF KH, NAIK M, GOLDSTEIN SA, VARANI J. Preservation of bone structure and function by Lithothamnion sp. derived minerals. Biol Trace Elem Res. 2013 Dec;156(1-3):210-20. doi: 10.1007/s12011-013-9820-7. Epub 2013 Oct 6. PMID: 24096551; PMCID: PMC3905747. BRASIL. Resolução RDC nº 269, de 22 de setembro de 2005. Aprova o “Regulamento Técnico sobre a Ingestão Diária Recomendada (IDR) de Proteína, Vitaminas e Minerais”. Órgão emissor: ANVISA - Agência Nacional de Vigilância Sanitária. Disponível em: . Food Business News, 6 de abril de 2021, Sosland Publishing Company, acessado em 19 de julho de 2021, disponível em: . Food Dive, 24 de novembro de 2020, Industry Dive, acessado em 19 de julho de 2021, disponível em: . GONÇALVES ALMEIDA, SIMONE, MEIRELES MELO, LANUZZA, POPOV CUSTÓDIO GARCIA, PALOMA. Biodisponibilidade de Cálcio Numa Dieta Isenta de Leite de Vaca e Derivados. Ensaios e Ciência: Ciências Biológicas, Agrárias e da Saúde [online]. 2011, 15(3), 147-158. Consultado em: 19 de Julho de 2021]. ISSN: 1415-6938. Disponível em: . HEANEY RP. Calcium intake and disease prevention. Arq Bras Endocrinol Metab, v. 50, n. 4, pp. 685-693, 2006. MELO, T.V.; MENDONÇA, P.P.; MOURA, A.M.A. et al. Solubilidad in vitro de algunas fuentes de calcio utilizadas en alimentación animal. Arch. Zootec., v.55, p.297-300, 2006. MORAIS GQ & BURGOS MGPA. Impacto dos nutrientes na saúde óssea: novas tendências. Rev. bras. ortop., jul., vol.42, no.7, p.189-194, 2007. REID IR, BOLLAND MJ, GREY A. Effect of calcium supplementation on hip fractures. Osteoporos Int. 2008 Aug;19(8):1119-23. doi: 10.1007/s00198-008-0563-9. Epub 2008 Feb 20. PMID: 18286218. SORIANI MF, TEIXEIRA MM. Avaliação in vitro da biodisponibilidade de íons de cálcio em preparaçãocomercial do Concentrado Mineral marinho - CMM produzido a partir de algas calcárias. 2012. Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais. Instituto de Ciências Biológicas. Belo Horizonte - Minas Gerais. PINTO NETO AM, SOARES A, URBANETZ AA, SOUZA ACA, FERRARI AEM, AMARAL B, et al. Consenso brasileiro de osteoporose 2002. Rev Bras Reumatol. 42:343-54, 2002. VELUCHAMY, CHANDRA & PALANISWAMY, RADHA. (2020). A REVIEW ON MARINE ALGAE AND ITS APPLICATIONS. Asian Journal of Pharmaceutical and Clinical Research. 21-27. 10.22159/ajpcr.2020.v13i3.36130.

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