INDOOR FARMING AT HOME: BOOSTING HEALTH WITH SPROUTS
Here are 5 tips to get you started having fun with and reaping the benefits of the healthiest possible sprouts, at home.
1. Research which varieties of sprouts you want to try. Different sprouts favor different growing conditions. Some sprouts grow best indoors, in soil, while others grow through soaking and moisture control methods. Sprouting times also vary depending on the type of sprout, the method and even personal preference. Wheat, sunflower, almond, lentil and mung sprouts are all good options if you’re a beginner. Also easy for beginners are Red clover, radish mustard, adzuki, garbanzo and pumpkin.
2. Collect your tools and get started. The jar and cloth methods are two of the most common sprouting methods, but require regular rinsing and checks for mold. Still, the old-fashioned way – growing sprouts in soil – remains one of the easiest and least time consuming methods. Growing sprouts in soil also produces far more nutritious and abundant food. You can also try sprouting bags or commercial made sprouting systems available at many health or natural foods stores.
For in-depth tips on how to sprout, check out:
How to Sprout: Seeds, Beans + Grains
Ridiculously Easy Sprouting 1010
The Sprouting Guide: How to Sprout Seeds and Bean Sprouts.
3. Water makes a difference. Use bottled spring water or filtered water when sprouting. Most seeds won’t sprout well in polluted tap water. There is no point to sprout with water contaminated with fluoride and chlorine.
4. Freshness is key. It’s best to eat sprouts as soon as they are ready, but if you need to store them, put them in the refrigerator or in a controlled sprouting environment until you’re ready to use them. Stored sprouts should be rinsed every 24 hours.
5. Get creative. There are tons of ways to enjoy sprouts. Try adding different sprouts to your salads or wraps. Use sprouts as new toppings for sandwiches and burgers. Play with food styling by creating a simple gourmet meal from your choice of lean meat on a bed of sprouts salad.
Are sprouts good for me? World’s Healthiest Foods.
Balch, Phyllis A., and James F. Balch. 1992. Rx Prescription for Cooking and Dietary Wellness. Greenfield, Ind: P.A.B. Pub.
Murray, Michael T., Joseph E. Pizzorno, and Lara Pizzorno. 2005. The Encyclopedia of Healing Foods. New York: Atria Books.
Pitchford, Paul. 1996. Healing With Whole Foods: Oriental Traditions and Modern Nutrition. Berkeley, Calif: North Atlantic Books.
Sunflower Seeds. The World’s Healthiest Foods.
- 1 cup salad greens of your choice. For added flavor and nutrients, opt for baby greens including spinach, kale and Swiss chard.
- 1 cup of assorted raw sprouts. (pictured above: mung bean sprouts and broccoli seed sprouts)
- 1 Tomato, quartered or diced to preference
- 2 servings of your favorite natural salad dressing
Toss together all ingredients, raw in a salad bowl. Add dressing, toss, plate and enjoy!
When choosing a protein powder, look for these nine essential amino acids: histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan and valine. It is also important to stay away from protein isolates because many are exposed to acid processing and over-processing can alter key amino acids.
If this all sounds a bit overwhelming, try looking for protein powders made from peas, hemp, chia and Golden Chlorella(TM) High Protein, as they are some of the richest proteins available. It is important to remember that the human body is not static. It changes regularly due to environmental factors, nutritional intake and even aging. And despite that adulthood has long been treated as a single period of life, our bodies actually require different nutrient balances at different stages of life, including different stages of adulthood. Still, exactly how much protein should be eaten at which stage of life remains a topic of debate. Because there are so many factors to consider, it is important to consult your naturopathic doctor before starting a new protein regimen.
Protein: Moving Closer to Center Stage. Harvard School of Public Health.
Marz, Russell B. 1999. Medical Nutrition from Marz: (A Textbook In Clinical Nutrition). Portland, Or: Omni-Press.
Gaby, Alan. 2011. Nutritional Medicine. Concord, N.H: Fritz Perlberg Publishing.
FENNEL (Foeniculum vulgare)
When shopping for fennel, look for whitish or pale green bulbs that are clean, firm and solid, without signs of splitting, bruising or spotting, with relatively straight and closely superimposed stalks. Both the stalks and the leaves should be green in color. Pass on fennel with signs of flowering buds as this indicates that the fennel is past maturity. Fresh fennel should be used as soon as possible, but can be stored in the refrigerator crisper for about four days. Some creative ways of using fennel, the stalks in particular, is to add them to soups, stocks and stews. The leaves can be used as an herb seasoning.
Photo credit. “Fennel Flower Heads” by user:Fir0002 – Own work. Licensed under GNU Free Documentation License 1.2 via Wikimedia Commons
Fennel. The World’s Healthiest Foods.
Pitchford, Paul. 1996. Healing with Whole Foods: Oriental Traditions and Modern Nutrition. Berkeley, Calif: North Atlantic Books.
FLOWER ESSENCE THERAPY
Flower Essence Therapy in the Treatment of Major Depression: Preliminary Findings. Jeffery R. Cram, PhD
Ease Stress with Flower-Essence Therapy. Elizabeth Barker. Natural Health.
The information offered by this newsletter is presented for educational purposes. Nothing contained within should be construed as nor is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment. This information should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider. Always consult with your physician or other qualified health care provider before embarking on a new treatment, diet or fitness program. You should never disregard medical advice or delay in seeking it because of any information contained within this newsletter.
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