Activating nuts is very much a buzz term in the wellness industry and activated nuts attract a huge premium in the stores. So what is all the fuss?
Activation simply refers to the act of soaking and dehydrating nuts prior to consumption. With the multitude of other things we juggle on our to do lists each day, is it really necessary?
I’ll confess that I was late to join the nut soaking party but the more we have added them into our diet and given the reasons I’ll outline below, I now consider it a must do. It is important. But thankfully also incredibly simple!
Nuts are high in protein and essential fats as well as fibre, antioxidants and minerals. HOWEVER, nuts also contain anti nutrients. Firstly, they contain phytic acid / phytates – the storage form of phosphorus in plants. Phytic acid binds to minerals like zinc, magnesium, iron, calcium in the digestive tract. What does this mean? When we consume a lot of foods high in phytates our ability to absorb minerals may be impaired and mineral deficiencies may result. The best way to neutralise phytic acid? That’s right, soak and sprout them!
Nuts also contain enzyme inhibitors which prevent them from sprouting too prematurely. Unfortunately, when we consume the nuts, the enzyme inhibitors also act on digestive enzymes thereby preventing effective digestion.
It is unwise therefore to eat nuts that have not add the phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors removed. Soaking nuts in a salty brine is the best way to deactivate the enzymes inhibitors.
How to activate nuts……
- Dissolve sea salt or pink Himalayan salt in water to create salty brine
- Place nuts in large bowl and cover with salty brine
- Soak for required number of hours as per chart below
- Strain and rinse nuts
- Spread on dehydrator try and dehydrate for 12 – 24 hoursSet oven to lowest possible temperature and dry in oven for 12-24 hours (stirring occasionally).
- Store the dried nuts in an air tight glass container.
I have a 9 tray Sedona Dehydrator like this one http://amzn.to/1OpOp2N
The Excalibur 9 tray dehydrator is also popular and the offer smaller 4 tray units too http://amzn.to/1OpOPGj
Happy Soaking (and Munching!)