Sprouts are often overlooked, but are actually widely available and easy to grow on your own. They boast an incredible nutritional profile and are inexpensive enough to enjoy regularly as part of most meals. Whether shoved in a sandwich or mixed into a salad, sprouts can easily be part of your healthy diet.
Sprouts contain up to 100 times more enzymes than raw fruits and vegetables. During the sprouting process of beans, nuts and seeds, the quality of their protein and fiber content increases dramatically as does their overall nutritional profile. Minerals, such as calcium and magnesium, bind to protein and become more bio-available due to sprouting because the biochemistry of the process modifies the minerals so that they are in a chelated form, which is more easily assimilated in the body. The supply of vitamins also increases by 100 percent to 2000 percent in just a few days, depending on the sprout.
And why go to the grocery store when sprouts can be sourced locally, literally in the comfort of your home? Here’s how to do it:
- In a mason jar with a cheese-cloth top fastened closed with a rubber band, add 1 tablespoons of sprouting beans, nuts or seeds. Be sure to buy those that are either labeled “sprouting” or are organic, to prevent the prevalence of pesticides and other toxins.
- Add water, enough to fill the jar 2-3 inches up. Let the seeds soak overnight.
- The next day, drain and rinse the seeds. With the seeds wet, but not floating in water, close the fabric lid and place the jar in an area that does not get direct sunlight. Position the jar so that it is upside down on an angle. Excess water will drain as the seeds begin to sprout.
- Every day, repeat the process of rinsing and draining the seeds. This allows them to constantly stay moist.
- Once the seeds begin to sprout, place the jar where it receives direct sunlight. This allows them to grow larger and become greener.
- Different seeds require different sprouting times.
- After 3-7 days, the sprouts are ready to use. Enjoy!
Image Credit: L. Marie