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Why should we soak nuts, seeds, beans and legumes?
Nuts have phytic acid. Phytic acid is also found in grains and legumes. Just as with grains and legumes, soaking nuts is essential for proper digestions. When eating nuts that haven’t been soaked, the phytic acid binds to minerals in the gastrointestinal tract and can not be absorbed in the intestine and to many bound minerals can lead to mineral deficiencies. Phytates also reduce the digestibility of starches, proteins, and fats. By soaking, you are breaking down the phytic acid so it can be absorbed properly.
To reduce the anti-nutrient effects of phytic acid in foods, try the following:
- Soak, sprout, ferment, and cook plant foods.
- Consume vitamin C-rich foods with meals that contain phytic acid. Dense source of vitamin C include guava, bell pepper, kiwi, oranges, grapefruit, strawberries, Brussels sprouts, cantaloupe, papaya, broccoli, sweet potato, pineapple, cauliflower, kale, lemon juice, and parsley.
- Use vinegar in salad dressings and cooking to enhance mineral absorption and offset phytic acid.
- Supplement with phytase enzymes if necessary.
- Eat mineral fortified foods if necessary
- Supplement minerals if there is still a shortfall in your diet.
- If you’re eating a plant-based diet and have confirmed nutrient deficiencies, and you’ve tried all the above strategies with no success, adding small amounts of animal foods on occasion might boost stores of necessary minerals in your body.
Cashew, Pecan, Walnut, Mixed nuts, Macadamia, Brazil, Almonds
Pumpkin Seeds, Sesame Seeds, Sunflower seeds, Flax Seed, Flax Seed Ground
DRIED FRUIT and BERRIES
Goji berries, Cranberries, Raisins, Pitted Dates Dried
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