Why I am activating my nuts!
It’s time. I had to start doing it. I had to start activating my nuts.
Funny thing about keeping a food diary, is you can soon start pinpointing what foods are making you feel good and what foods are giving you a pain in the belly! My body also gave me the loud and clear via kinesiology muscle testing that activated nuts are good for me.
So, nuts………..prepare to be activated!
Okay so what is activating?
Activating is the process of unlocking the life force of nuts, seeds and grains. Activating releases their toxic substances and nutritional inhibitors. This is not a new concept, most ancient civilizations soaked nuts, seeds and grains!
Sally Fallon, author of Nourishing Traditions, says “according to Dr. Edward Howell, enzyme specialist, our ancestors ate most grains in partially germinated form (sprouted). Grains standing in stacks in open fields frequently began to sprout before they were brought into storage. Our modern farming techniques prevent grains from germinating as often the goal is a longer shelf life.”
Okay, so how do you activate your nuts?
Easy! Just soak your nuts in salt water. Allow about a teaspoon of salt per cup of filtered water and make sure there is enough water to cover the nuts.
Lemon juice, apple cider vinegar or yoghurt are added to grains and seeds rather than salt. This brilliant graphic from Wake Up World explains how long each nuts, grains and seeds need to soak for. You don’t have to make it too complicated though, just overnight in some filtered water is cool.
After soaking, rinse well and you can now eat them or use them in recipes wet. However, they will only keep in the fridge for a few days. To extend their shelf-life, you can dry them out using a dehydrator or the oven. I find the dehydrator much easier – you can chuck them in and (almost) forget about them. How long will depend on your dehydrator, so check the manual, but around 12 hours should be okay. Just make sure to test them to make sure they are very dry.
If you want to use the oven, spread them out on a baking tray and whack into the oven on the lowest temperature – about 60 degrees celsius. It will take about 12 hours or overnight. You have to stir them occasionally. After cooling them down, they can be stored in an air-tight container.
Hot Tip: Make sure your nuts are very dry and crisp because they will go mouldy otherwise!
Why would you activate your nuts?
Like I mentioned, eating a lot of raw nuts can give some people a tummy ache!
Here is what my favourite nutritionist, Cyndi O’Meara has to say:
“Our digestive tracts find it hard to extract the minerals from uncooked grains, nuts and seeds. Cooking or soaking the grains, nuts and seeds releases the toxic substances and nutritional inhibitors including; phytates, tannins, and goitrogens, which bind the minerals and make these nutrients easier for the body to extract and utilise for maximum digestibility. One particular problem with grains, nuts and seeds is that they also contain enzyme inhibitors which can block the action of trypsin and other protein digesting enzymes. This can produce serious gastric distress, with reduced protein digestion causing chronic deficiencies in Amino Acid uptake. Therefore soaking nuts, grains and seeds increases the amount of minerals, vitamins (especially B Vitamins) and protein readily available for absorption. Remember it’s not what you eat; it’s what you digest and absorb.”
Can you buy activated nuts?
Yes, you sure can. Check out some activated nuts at Organics on a Budget. Unfortunately, because of the activating process, the price shoots up to about $40-$50 a kilo. I can get organic almonds for around $15 a kilo through our co-op. We go through a lot of nuts in our house, so doing it myself is a more economical option for us.
What do you do with activated nuts?
Well, you eat them! Just use them as you would normal almonds. Make them into almond meal, use in recipes or just snack on. You can sprinkle on some seasonings during the drying process like pink salt and apple cider vinegar or spices for a yummy treat.
Do I really have to activate my nuts?
Well, I tried to get away with it, thinking I didn’t have time to be faffing about soaking and dehydrating! Unfortunately after a year and a half of eating more nuts than I ever have before, my body is telling me I need to. If you don’t eat a lot of nuts, it’s probably not a big deal. However, if you are eating a lot of nuts, seeds and grains, it might be worth checking in with your body and see how it feels when you eat them un-activated versus activated. Remember bio-individuality and always be led by what your body says.
Do you activate your nuts? Tell me about it.
Only one of the best books I have ever read!
Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. Click here to buy.
UPDATE: This dehydrator in the photos did not last long before the plastic started cracking. I am now saving up for an Excalibur (above) from The Raw Food Store!