My obsession with sprouts of late has been strong! So in an effort to learn not only why I find them so delicious, but also why they seem to make me feel perkier and alike to a health maven, I’ve conducted some overhead research on these nutrient powerhouses.
Sprouts are cute! They are tiny shoots stemming (HA!) from seeds, grains, nuts, or legumes. You can easily find them in most grocery stores or specialty stores. I’ve rediscovered these sprouts at my local farmers market. Starting with the alfalfa sprouts and growing my obsession by adding in bean sprouts (far more water dense) to fill my salads to the brim with sprout nutrition.
Why should we eat them?
They are rich in amino acids and plant proteins (excellent for plant based individuals). Vitamin rich including A, B, C, and E among others. Minerals abound such as; calcium, zinc, iron, magnesium, and potassium. Even more profound and what gives them an edge over full-grown plants is their surplus of enzymes which make them easier to digest. This in turn helps you to preserve your own enzymes for other important bodily function. Perhaps this is what has caused me to perk up after a salad full of sprouts! They are also a great source of phytochemicals. Phytochemicals can help support overall health, but are well known to prevent many types of cancer by keeping our body’s inflammation levels down. Additionally, they can help alkalize your digestive pH- the buzz word in health culture ALKALIZE. And check!
Some holistic believers (and me) claim that sprouts hold the energy and vitality of youthfulness because they are the source from which plant life is created. Just a thought!
Interestingly, plant-based foods including seeds, grains, and legumes is that they contain rich sources of nutrients that become activated during their growth process. They also create “anti-nutrients” to protect themselves, nutrients that block our absorption of the good nutrients. We cannot digest the helpful nutrients without neutralizing the harmful ones first; this is achieved through soaking and sprouting.
How can we grow them?
To further my obsession I am intent on trying my luck (safely of course) at sprouting my own seeds, legumes, and perhaps grains. So what is the proper course of action to sprout your own nutrient gems? Read on.
Firstly, purchasing organic seeds, legumes or grains to start (alfalfa is a good start according to many online sources).
Next, measure out roughly half a cup of the seeds and wash thoroughly and place into a glass jar.
Add 2 cups of water, mix well, cover and let sit for 8 hours. Drain the water and rinse seeds thoroughly.
Next, place in a paper towel at the bottom of a jar and place the soaked and rinsed seeds on top.
Set aside, away from direct sunlight.
Rinse the seeds every 12 hours for 3-4 days (as long as 6) returning to the jar after each rinse.
Place into the fridge once sprouting has begun, they will continue to sprout there (albeit at a slower rate) and consume within a week.
I am excited to try this and even more excited if A. I do not accrue and food poisoning and B. actually succeed with in creating some life.
Where can we use these sprouts aside from salads?
They easily can be incorporated into sandwiches, wraps, over tacos, a bed for sushi, blended into smoothies, or use as a side dish with some coconut oil and salt.
They are a truly easy way to incorporate a wonderful super food into your diet and with a green-thumb a fun way to learn and know exactly where your food is coming from.