Sprouted Raw Almonds May Improve Nutrient Value

The latest trend in food consumption may be sprouting various vegetables and nuts.

It’s hard to visit a local farmer’s market or health food store without finding sprouts of broccoli, radishes or other healthy veggies. The young plants contain all the nutrients unlocked from the seed, in a form that can be easily digested by humans.

But recently retailers have begun marketing sprouted almonds as the best way to get all the nutrients contained in your favorite snack – raw organic almonds. After all, the almonds we enjoy are really just the seed of a fruit tree which could easily be planted and grown in the back yard.

The sprouting process is done commercially by many processors but can easily be done in your own home, if you pay attention to the proper methodology. The almonds are simply soaked for 12-18 hours in water, or until they begin to germinate. They are then removed and dried in a low temperature and low humidity environment.

Most experts recommend soaking almonds only up to 24 hours, making sure that you change the water 2-4 times.

Once they are dried the raw nuts can be stored much like the un-sprouted varieties – up to six months. But if you don’t want to take the time to dry the almonds they should be stored in your refrigerator for two or three days at most, before they should be eaten or converted to another almond product, such as almond paste or almond milk.

Some experts recommend using salt water to speed the process and enhance the final flavor but you can also use purified water, allowing the almonds to swell and germinate.

What’s the difference between raw nuts and the sprouted version? The answer lies in the enzymes. Many of the valuable nutrients in almonds are stored in forms that are not easily digestible. For example phosphorous is stored in an almond as phytic acid.

Phosphorous is an important nutrient because it increases energy levels and is promotes the functioning of other vitamins. A typical handful of almonds can contain over 350 mg of phytic acid. Phytic acid, can be processed by the human body but it restricts the amount of phosphorous the body absorbs and can also bind to other minerals and make them difficult to digest.

The germination process breaks down the phytic acid and leaves the phosphorous in a form which is easier for the human digestive tract to process and absorb. In fact, many experts recommend soaking almonds before making almond milk to remove the phytic acid.

These days, store shelves are filled with a variety of products from nutrition bars and breads that boast the use of sprouted almonds.

But whether you want to look for sprouted raw almonds or simply raw organic almonds you can be assured they contain a wealth of vitamins and nutrients that should be an essential part of your diet.

American Export House supplies organic and conventional almond varieties to customers throughout the United States. For more information contact AEH.

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