Learn How To Activate Nuts
Activated Nuts are the latest health trend and although they really are absolutely delicious, they can be very expensive to buy. Activating your own organic nuts and seeds is easy and I will show you Learn How To Activate Nuts, but first let me give you the breakdown on what activating nuts and seeds is all about.
Activated Nuts Are They Actually Healthier?
I did some research and to date, the jury is still out on whether there are any actual health benefits to eating activated nuts and seeds as opposed to eating plain, raw, nuts and seeds.
I could not find any official, scientific nutritional studies that have actually been done on activated nuts.
Phytic Acid In Nuts & Seeds
That being said, what they do know is that nuts and seeds contain Phytic Acid and although this acid on it’s own accord is a powerful anti-oxidant and may even prevent some forms of cancer, it is also known to act as a binder to the zinc, iron and magnesium in nuts and seeds, which cause these important nutrients to be poorly absorbed in our intestinal tracts.
For more information on Phytic Acid and how it affects our health and the absorption of important minerals read this article by Nourishing Days and this PubMed article Phytic Acid in Health and Disease.
What The Process Of Activating Nuts & Seeds Does
It is because of the Phytic Acid that so many people are advocates of activating nuts and seeds.
Activating nuts and seeds is the process of soaking raw nuts and seeds in salt water for a period of time that is long enough to start the nuts and seeds germinating. This process is believed to breakdown the Phytic Acid in the nuts and seeds and in-turn you get what raw foodies call a “live” nut full of accessible nutrients that beforehand where bonded up in the Phytic Acid.
Activating nuts and seeds also seems to make them a lot more digestible. There many reports of people who couldn’t eat nuts before, but who can now tolerate eating nuts and seeds that have been activated.
According to this detailed and informative article Living With Phytic Acid by The Western. A Price Foundation, eating a diet high in foods that contain high levels of Phytic Acid such as grains, legumes & nuts etc. can lead to mineral deficiencies and therefore it is important for us to learn to prepare these foods properly in order to minimize the amount of Phytic Acid in them. It goes on to say that there is not a lot of information on Phytic reduction in nuts, but the process of soaking them for at least 18 hours in salted water and then dehydrating them and roasting or cooking them should go a long way towards reducing the amount of Phytic Acid in them.
So yes, while some say that there is no scientific proof of any health benefits of activating nuts and seeds (read Nuts for Life’s article) what I here at livingsafe can definitely tell you is that activated nuts and seeds definitely taste better and yes they do also seem a lot easier to digest.
Now let me save you the dollars and teach you how to activate your own nuts and seeds.
Step 1. Purchase some raw, organic or pesticide free nuts and seeds: e.g almonds and sunflower seeds
Step 2. Get a large glass or stainless steel bowl and pour your nuts or seeds into the bowl, do not mix different nuts or seeds together in the soaking process, use separate bowls.
Step 3. Cover your nuts/seeds with filtered water. I like to make sure they are well submerged in water, so usually at least a good couple of inches of water above the nuts.
Step 4. Add a couple teaspoons of sea salt to the water.
Step 5. Leave to soak. The time for soaking varies according to the type of nut or seed you are soaking. For almonds which seems to be the most popular activated nut choice, it is recommended that you soak them for at least 12 hours and up to 24 hours.
Step 6. Once your nuts or seeds have been soaking for the required amount of time, drain out the old salty water and rinse them very well in fresh running water.
Step 7. Now you can choose to go the natural route or the flavoured route and season your nuts and seeds. We love seasoning our activated almonds in any of the following organic ingredients: Organic Tamari, Sea Salt, Himalayan Pink Salt, Cinnamon, Paprika, Chili Powder, Ginger Powder and Garlic Powder.
Step 8. To season simply toss the nuts with your desired seasoning choices in a large glass or stainless steel bowl till evenly covered. You may need to use your hands to massage the seasoning evenly onto the damp nuts and seeds.
Step 9. Dehydrating the Nuts and Seeds: By far the easiest way to dehydrate nuts and seeds is by dehydrating them in a Food Dehydrator, as this allows you to dry them at a controlled and recommended low temperature of around 50-65 degrees C or 140-150 degrees F. Drying nuts and seeds at such a low temperature is recommended in order to preserve the nutrients in the nuts and seeds that would otherwise be destroyed if they were to be roasted at higher temperatures. Please note that the only Food Dehydrator we can currently recommend is the Sedona Food Dehydrator, as it is both BPA and PVC free.
Alternatively you can dry out your nuts and seeds in a conventional oven on the lowest heat setting possible. If your oven doesn’t go that low, some people leave the oven door open a little during the drying process in order to keep the temperature inside the oven at the recommended lower heat level.
Another important step to successfully dehydrating nuts and seeds, is to make sure that you spread them evenly out and not too close together on either your Sedona Dehydrating Trays or on oven baking trays lined with eco-friendly and unbleached baking paper.
Nuts and Seeds can not really be over-dried, but they can definitely by under-dried and this leads to the nuts and seeds going rancid and moldy very quickly. Generally in a Sedona Food Dehydrator you need to let nuts such as almonds dehydrate for a minimum of 24 hours. In a conventional oven it is generally quicker as they are stronger and hotter, even on the lowest temperature settings.
You know a nut or seed has been effectively dehydrated and dried out by tasting it. When you bite into it, it should have a definite crunch to it and not be soft or mushy.
You should store your activated and dehydrated nuts and seeds in an air-tight preferably glass container. Keeping them in the fridge is also a good idea.
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