Why You Should Soak Nuts, Seeds And GrainsLuke Coutinho
A nut and a seed in nature, that’s supposed to germinate and grow into a plant. But basically when a nut and seed and it are in its raw form and it’s not mixing with water it’s meant to be dry. This means only when a nut and seed mixes with water that’s when the whole germination process starts and the growth of a nut or a seed into a plant or into a tree. Nature’s natural defence mechanism is to protect the nut and seed in its dry form which means it cannot spoil. It holds possible and potential life for a new plant or a new tree.
Nuts and seeds are great for our health as they contain essential fatty acids, protein and amino acids and minerals. It’s one of the best raw foods that you could ever have in your plan. But we should be soaking these nuts and seeds.
Nature needs to protect the raw form of a nut or a seed. So it covers the nut or seed with phytic acid or it covers it with certain enzyme inhibitors or covers it with certain amount of tannins and that’s great for protecting the seed and when the seed falls into the ground or you put water onto it that’s when the water and the seed starts off the process of germination or growth. So until water hits a seed or a nut it’s basically protected.
When we consume dry seeds and dry nuts the problem that happens is enzyme inhibitors that are protecting the nuts and seeds may not be too good for our system. There are two kinds of enzymes; a digestive enzyme which has the role of breaking down food in the human body and metabolic enzymes which basically work with the biology of the human body. When enzyme inhibitors get into our system it binds on to certain minerals and vitamins that we have. So these enzyme inhibitors basically interfere with our enzymatic reactions in the body impairing digestion in the human body. It can be very heavy on our digestive systems. So that’s one reason why we soak our nuts and seeds so that we break away those enzyme inhibitors and it’s easier for our bodies and our stomach to digest and break down the nuts and seeds.
Nuts and seeds are naturally covered with tannins. Tannins are not a bad thing because we find tannins even in black tea in green tea. But tannins sometimes block the absorption of iron into our body. So if we have just had a meal or we are eating nuts for their protein or we are eating seeds for a variety of minerals, basically the tannins that we also ingest blocks the absorption of iron into our system. So that becomes a problem.
Nature covers most seeds, nuts and grains with phytates. Phytates are anti-nutrients. This means they bind on to iron, magnesium, copper and zinc in our colon. So we are consuming good food but we are not absorbing it. So we should wash away this phytic acid by soaking nuts, seeds and grains in water so that the phytic acid, enzyme inhibitors and tannins get washed away. Also by soaking nuts, and seeds you make the protein in a form which can be better assimilated by the human body. By soaking certain grains we also help them break down that very tough gluten which causes a problem in most people.
I recommend six to eight hours of soaking for grains and legumes. It could also be twelve hours in warm water with a little bit of salt or a little bit of apple cider vinegar or plain vinegar to break down all these chemicals so that when we ingest it we’re getting the best out of seeds and nuts.
Soaking certain seeds like pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds is very good because you’ll see that they even start sprouting post a night of soaking and that has so much of nutrition and better health benefits.
Dried fruits, dried nuts and seeds are stored in large warehouses all over and in India usually we have a lot of unhygienic conditions. We have rats and rodents all around roaming on these places and if they are taking like a pee on all of these things which are lying on factory and warehouse floors we are putting a lot of toxins and dirt into our system. So I definitely suggest washing and soaking your nuts. They taste better and it has a better nutritional impact in your body.
So make sure that you have nuts and seeds in your daily diet because that’s how you get raw into your diet. Cooked food is dead food. You are cooking food and killing all of the enzymes and most of the nutrition. So we should have a proportion of raw food that we get from fruits vegetables nuts and seeds. Fermenting your grains also increases the B vitamin absorption into your body.
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