1.Increase Nutrient Absorption: The metabolic activity of a resting dormant seed is significantly increased by soaking and further increases with germination and sprouting. This increase in activity makes for more bioavailable nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, enzymes, sugars, fiber, protein, fats, etc. Studies have found that vitamins such as C, E and A (beta carotene) were barely detectable in some dry grains but sprouting the grains (seeds) increased their concentrations significantly.
2.Sprouting makes food easier to digest: For many people eating grains, nuts, beans and different seeds can cause general digestive discomfort such as gas and bloating. A major benefit to sprouting these seeds is that this unlocks much needed enzymes that can aid in the digestion of their different components which in turn reduces the load on the digestive system. Additionally, sprouted and fermented seeds contain higher amounts of probiotics or good bacteria that inhabit the gut flora and are known to help improve digestion.
3.Decrease anti-nutrients such as phytic acid and gluten: Soaking, sprouting and fermenting seeds cuts down on anti-nutrients such as phytic acid and gluten. These anti-nutrients act like toxins in the digestive system that can lead to inflammation and some cases severe discomfort. This in turn can lead to lack of proper absorption and malnourishment especially as is the case with Celiacs disorder. To help put things in perspective, studies have demonstrated that following specific methods of soaking, sprouting and also fermenting wheat seeds can reduce their gluten content to less than 20ppm which therefore qualifies them to be labeled gluten free under current guidelines.
4.Immune booster and anti-cancer: Many individuals wisely supplement their diet with vitamins and minerals for improved health. Additionally, many will add enzymes and probiotics to their routine to enhance the uptake of these vitamins and minerals. Sprouting seeds basically does it all. Of course, every sprout has its own unique nutrient profile but all in all they are one complete source of quality nutrients and potent antioxidants that are readily available and absorbable. This puts them front and center for increased immune function and because much of the anti-nutrients have been mitigated, there is reduced toxins and digestive load and likely less instance of auto immune response. And of course, with increased immune function comes better cancer prevention and or recovery.
5.Infant health: Neural defects are a common side affect of deficiencies of folate-a member of the vitamin B family. Sprouts, again some more than others, offer healthy amounts of this vital nutrient. Both mother and expecting child can benefit as well as developing infants and young children from sprouted foods in the diet.
6. Eye health: Vitamin A has been closely associated with improved eye health for many years. It acts as an antioxidant helping protect eyes from free radicals and oxidative damage. Sprouts high in Vitamin A can help improve vision including night vision and protect against issues such as cataracts, glaucoma and macular degeneration.
7. Weight loss and heart health: Because of the high content of fiber, particularly crude fiber, in most sprouts, they can be helpful in maintaining desirable weight and improving heart health. Crude fiber in the diet helps maintain a full satisfied feeling so one doesn’t overeat thus assisting in weight loss that helps improve heart health. Also, this crude fiber helps balance healthy cholesterol levels that benefit the heart.
Written by DMK of Seven Grains.