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Taking note from our ancestors, let’s bring back some traditions that should never have been done away with in the first place.

Because we have fallen into the trap of convenience and “ instant” when it comes to food, our health has suffered.

Properly preparing our food is key to allowing our bodies to get the most out of it.

Sprouting, soaking, fermenting, rinsing, and slow-cooking foods have so many benefits and before the recent age, it was the norm.

This is because so many foods have anti-nutrients and are harder to digest, thus properly preparing them is key to digestibility and absorbability.

Fermentation, for instance, is a universal part of human culture. This dates back to at least 6,000 BC if not further.

Fermentation makes foods last longer, gives them a better flavor, is safer to consume, & easier to digest.

 

The Benefits of soaking

  • Anti-nutritional enzyme inhibitors are reduced.
  • The chance for a side effect of excess gas is lessened.
  • Reduces phytic acids and improves the absorption of important nutrients and minerals, such as protein, iron, zinc, and calcium.
  • Decreased cooking time and improved texture

 

Simple steps to proper preparation:

Veggies that contain anti-nutrients and therefore are best consumed cooked

 Above-ground veggies that include broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, kale, collards, mustard greens, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts. Cooking these veggies will improve their digestibility, however, if you have a severely compromised gut, I would avoid them for a time period to improve digestion. 

Soaking Nuts and Seeds:
All nuts: Place 4 cups of raw, shelled nuts into a large mixing bowl. Cover with water and stir in 1 tablespoon of Celtic sea salt. Soak (see chart below for specific soaking times). Drain and then place in a dehydrator, or spread the nuts on a large baking sheet lined with unbleached parchment paper and dehydrate them in a warm oven (under 150ºF) for 12 to 24 hours. I usually let the nuts dehydrate in my oven overnight.

Almonds: 7-8 hours
Brazil Nuts: 4-6 hours
Cashews: 3-6 hours
Flaxseeds: 7-8 hours
Hazelnuts: 7-8 hours
Macadamia Nuts: 6-7 hours
Pecans: 7 hours
Pine Nuts: 7 hours
Pistachios: 4 hours
Pumpkin Seeds: 7-8 hours
Sesame Seeds: 7-8 hours
Sunflower Seeds: 4 hours
Walnuts: 6 hours

Soaking Grains:
Rice and Millet: Place 2 cups of grain into a large mixing bowl and cover with 2 cups of warm water. Stir in 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice or apple cider vinegar. Leave the bowl at room temperature for 7 hours. Drain, rinse, and then cook as usual.

Quinoa: Place 2 cups of quinoa into a large mixing bowl and cover it with 6 cups of water. Stir in 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice or apple cider vinegar. Leave at room temperature for 24 hours. Drain, rinse, and then cook as usual.

All other grains: Place 2 cups of grain into a large mixing bowl and cover with 2 cups of warm water. Stir in 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice or apple cider vinegar. Leave the bowl at room temperature for 12-24 hours. Drain, rinse, and then cook as usual, or dry in a dehydrator.

Soaking Legumes:
For Kidney, Pinto, Navy, White, and Black Beans: Place 2 cups of beans into a large mixing bowl and cover with warm water. Stir in 2 pinches of baking soda. Leave at room temperature and soak for at least 18-24 hours total. Every 7 hours, drain the beans, cover them with warm water again and stir in another 2 pinches of baking soda.

Drain, rinse, and cook in a large pot or slow cooker. Avoid using a pressure cooker as the extremely high temperature and pressure will denature the protein and can destroy other nutrients in the legumes.

Lentils: Place 2 cups of lentils into a large mixing bowl and cover with warm water. Stir in 2 tablespoons of lemon juice or apple cider vinegar. Leave at room temperature and soak for at least 7 hours.

Drain, rinse, and cook in a large pot or slow cooker. Avoid using a pressure cooker as the extremely high temperature and pressure will denature the protein and can destroy other nutrients in the legumes.

Garbanzo Beans: Place 2 cups of beans into a large mixing bowl and cover with warm water. Stir in 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice or apple cider vinegar. Leave at room temperature and soak for at least 24 hours.

Drain, rinse, and cook in a large pot or slow cooker. Avoid using a pressure cooker as the extremely high temperature and pressure will denature the protein and can destroy other nutrients in the legumes.

 

 

 

 

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