Nutritionist, Herbalist, Ayurvedic practitioner, Closed Colonic Hydrotherapist, Lecturer, Speaker, Author, Registered Nurse - helping the community for over 30 years.

Sprouting is growing small seeds, grain or beans like mung been seeds into little living green plants.

The stored nutrient is allowed to burst through with abundant nutrition. The new growth includes the shoot, seed/grain/bean and root, jam packed with nutrition.

Why sprout?

• Firstly it increases many nutrients and is easy to digest.
• Calories actually decrease so that’s a plus if you are on a weight loss diet.
• The chlorophyll and enzymes increase as the plant becomes a living food. These enzymes help with digestion.
• The B vitamins increase 10 fold, the vitamin C, A, E, K, zinc and calcium increase as well as the protein.
• The fibre and water content are high.
• It removes enzyme inhibitors which can impair digestion; these are known as phytic and oxalic acid.
• It reduces gas producing compounds known as oligosaccharides.
• You will find it is so easy to do and very rewarding and if you are on a budget it’s incredibly cheap.
Many years ago when I was travelling and hiking, I made sprouts in stockings hung over my backpack and I watered them as I went past streams. This was not only fun but it was great to have some live fresh food as all the other food during the hikes was dried or tinned.
If you have kids it’s a great way to start getting them involved in watching food grow and you don’t even need a balcony or a garden! Kids are much more likely to want to try foods they have grown.

What to sprout?

You can sprout a whole variety of seeds, beans and grains. Some take longer than others. Alfalfa is very popular and like other sprouts can be used on salads, mixed with rice after cooking or added to soups after the soup has been cooked.

Here are some ideas and you can find these at your local health food shop or market:

• Mung beans, chickpeas, aduki beans, lima beans, clover, barley, rice, oats, peas, lentils wheatgrass. Wheat grain changes to wheatgrass which you may have had at a juice bar. Broccoli sprouts have the highest number of antioxidants, in particular sulphurophane which is amazing for detoxing in the second phase of liver detoxification. There are 2 phases of liver detoxification that happen every day and they allow you to release harmful chemicals and everyday toxins.
• Pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and most grains need to be soaked for 4-12 hours before sprouting. Chickpeas and peas for 12 hours.
Most sprouts only cost 20 cents for a cup. How cheap is that for all the benefits!

How to sprout

There are three ways you can do it:

1. Buy a sprouter from a health food shop. They can be easier when starting out.
2. Glass jar method
What you will need:
• A large glass jar with a wide mouth.
• Gauze or cheese cloth to cover the top of the jar.
• A rubber band to hold it in place.
• Fresh filtered water.
• Choose a seed of your choice which can be purchased from a health shop; start with something easy like alfalfa or mung bean, just one type at a time.
Method
1. Add enough seeds to cover the base of the jar.
2. Cover the seeds with about 4 cm’s of water.
3. Add the gauze cover and rubber band and secure gauze then pour the water off letting the seeds settle back into the jar.
4. Repeat the rinsing two or three times a day and store the jar in a dark area of your kitchen. For proper drainage the jar is best stored upside down at an angle of 50-70 degrees. (aAn angled dish rack works well.
5. After two or three days shoots will appear and the seeds will require sunlight. pPlace them on the kitchen bench near a window or on a window sill and continue to rinse twice a day.
6. Depending on the sprout they will be ready anywhere from day three to day six. The sprout will be green with a shoot half a cm long or longer.
7. Remove and store in an airtight container in the fridge to eat in salads, on soups or any way you fancy.

3. The tray method
What you will need:
• A tray at least 2-3cms deep.
• A high nutrient dirt mix or soaked cotton wadding.
• A spray bottle.
Method:
1. Line the base with dirt mix or soaked cotton wadding.
2. Sprinkle seeds into the tray.
3. Spray water onto the seeds two to three times a day.
When the seeds are ready cut them and store in an airtight container in the fridge to eat in salads, sandwiches, on soups after cooking or on stir fries (sprinkle on after you have finished cooking) or any way you fancy as a healthy snack. Eat them in a few days as they can go mouldy if kept too long.

Tip:

If your sprouts ferment and smell whilst growing them make sure you rinse them more often and check to see when they are done.

Taken from ‘Digestive Solutions-101 methods to solve your tummy problems naturally’
Go to www.digestivesolutions.com.au for further info

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