Why You Should ‘Activate’ Your Nuts & Seeds – And How To Do It.
Seeds and nuts are delicious and easy snacks, and they provide numerous essential nutrients, fibre, and healthy fats. Yet, if you are a fan of roasted nuts, we suggest replacing them with raw, dried nuts, as roasting might cause some side-effects and make the nuts go rancid. Also, companies often use cheap oils. Therefore, simply buy raw ones and roast them on your own, at home. However, you probably weren’t aware of the fact that you should activate seeds and nuts in order to enjoy all their benefits. The activation process involves soaking them for several hours or overnight.
Nuts and seeds are high in phytic Acid, which is the storage form of phosphorus in plants, and it binds with minerals such as calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium, and manganese in the digestive tract, and makes them unavailable. The regular consumption of foods high in phytic acid raises the risk of developing mineral deficiencies and osteoporosis. Hence, if you are a fan of nuts and eat handfuls daily, you should definitely learn how to activate your nuts.
The bodies of some animals have phytase, which is an enzyme that breaks up phytic acid. Even though we do not have it, there are certain ways to neutralize the phytic acid and use all the nutrients and minerals from nuts and seeds, by soaking, sprouting, and/or fermenting.
Nuts and seeds have enzyme inhibitors which prevent them from sprouting prematurely. In the wild, seeds and nuts can wait for the needed moisture and warmth long before they germinate. The inhibitors clog up and deactivate the enzyme’s active site, making unsprouted nuts hard to digest.
The process of activation of nuts reduces the levels of phytic acid and makes the enzymes available by switching off their enzyme inhibitors. In this way, by soaking, we send a signal to the dried nuts that it is germination time, and it can switch off these elements and start sprouting. If you consume lots of nuts, you can activate them on a daily basis or in big batches to save time.
This is how to activate them:
In a large bowl, add two cups of the seeds and nuts you plan to activate. Note that chia and hemp seeds do not need to be activated.
Then, pour filtrated water to cover them until they are fully submerged, with 2 inches of water on the top. Add 2 teaspoons of sea salt, and leave them thus for 7-12 hours.
Almonds need to soak for 12-14 hours, and cashews only 3-5.
Afterward, just strain off the water and wash them. Next, put them on dehydration racks or on cookie sheets in the oven to dry them at 150 degrees F or 65 degrees C.
They need to be completely dry as otherwise, they can easily spoil. When they are dry, transfer them to an airtight container and store them in the fridge. Now you can reap all the benefits of your favorite seeds and nuts!