Nuts & Grains 101

nutsAll nuts, seeds and grains contain phytic acid, which binds with minerals like calcium, magnesium, iron.This prevents them from being absorbed by our bodies. That is why many people have digestive difficulties when eating these types of foods. Many of you have heard me talk about soaking your grains to neutralize these phytic acids so that you can get the most health benefits and assimilation.

Nuts contain smaller amounts of phytic acid than grains do. Their real issue for us is having high amounts of enzyme inhibitors.These enzymes are useful to seeds and nuts because it prevents them from sprouting prematurely. But they can really strain your digestive system. Soaking your nuts in water will neutralize these enzyme inhibitors, and also help encourage the production of beneficial enzymes. These enzymes, in turn, increase many vitamins, especially B vitamins. It also makes these nuts much easier to digest and the nutrients more easily absorbed.

Basic Recipes

Soaked Breakfast Oatmeal or Steel Cut Oats

Serves 4

• 1 cup oats, rolled or cracked

• Cover with filtered water

• 1-2 T. Whey, yogurt, lemon juice, or raw apple cider vinegar (this is the acid needed to release the phytic acid in the grain).

Leave on counter overnight and cook up as usual in the morning. Note: The soaking reduces the cooking time.

Serve with plenty of butter and cream, whose fat-soluble activators provide the needed catalysts for mineral absorption. You can add all kinds of “goodies” to the oatmeal like blueberries, raisins, currants, apples, coconut flakes, nuts, flax seeds, etc.

Another variation is to add some grated ginger to the oatmeal before cooking it. You can even add some coconut oil or coconut concentrate to the oatmeal for added nutrition.

This same soaking technique applies to other grains such as wheat berries, rye, millet, quinoa and other grains.

Crispy Nuts

• 4 cups raw nuts (almonds, pecans, walnuts, peanuts, hazel nuts, macadamia nuts, etc)

• 1 T. unrefined sea salt

• Filtered water to cover nuts

Mix the nuts with filtered water and salt. Leave in a warm place for at least 7 hours or overnight. Drain in a colander. Dry in a food dehydrator at 150 degrees for 12 to 24 hours, until completely dry and crisp. If you do not have a food dehydrator, place in a warm oven, no more than 150 degrees.

Note: Cashews are the only “raw” nuts that you need to be careful with soaking. They are not truly raw when you buy them and have already undergone two separate heatings. The enzymes have already been destroyed during processing. Cashews contain a toxic oil called cardol between the inner and out shell. This is released by cracking the nuts and roasting them at 350 degrees. They are cracked and roasted once again. This is what we are buying when cashews are sold as “raw”. For this reason, cashews only need to be soaked 6 hours and no longer or they will become slimy and develop a disagreeable taste. They may be dried at 200 to 250 degrees as you will not be trying to preserve the enzymes.