My goal is to get you as healthy as you’ve ever dreamed possible, but on a budget. And I’ve discovered a way to get you an extra boost from your organic buy. This time, it’s not by eating peels or carrot tops—and definitely not by eating ramen noodles. No. This time it’s by sprouting your organics.
Author R. J. Ruppenthal asks, “Would you like to grow some of your own food this year? Indoors? With no sunlight or soil? At any time of the year and at all times of the year? Sprouts allow you to do all that and more” (location 31 of 892, 3%). He also says, “Sprouts can provide you with the power-packed nutrition your body needs at a fraction of the price of store-bought food” (location 31 of 892, 3%). In fact, “sprouts … often have higher concentrations of nutrients and beneficial compounds than mature plants do” (p. 1 of 31, 9%),
For example, “after grains are soaked in water then strained and left at room temperature in the dark, their reproductive system kicks in, and they begin to sprout and ferment. This fermentation process is what breaks down the proteins and sugars … and releases the probiotics that are indigenous to the grains. … The liquid becomes probiotic rich, and is known as rejuvalac” (https://ohmyveggies.com/how-to-sprout-grains/). I’m all in for free homegrown healthy probiotics. Store bought probiotics cost a fortune.
But I don’t cook. I once had such bad anxiety that I feared charring the kitchen walls. So, I soak my organic steel cut oats overnight rather than boil them. And by morning, the oats taste fluffy and edible. But my grocery store ran out of steel cut oats. So, I bought organic quinoa instead. Overnight, I soaked half a cup of quinoa with a cup of water. To my shock, the next morning, the quinoa sprouted. And the water turned pink (with probiotics). Well, maybe I have a green thumb, I thought. And I bet you do, too.
While raw sprouts contain good bacteria (probiotics), they can also host bad bacteria. So cook them first. Cooking your sprouted grains and beans prevents foodborne bacteria. Yet, author Ruppenthal says, “You can include raw beans and grains in your diet also, but only if you sprout them first” (p, 3 of 31, 13%). Further to that, he says, “Sprouting is the most reliable way to prepare grains and beans for raw consumption. Once sprouted, these foods are easier for the body to digest and can make up an important part of your diet” (p.1 of 31, 6%). I say, do your research before eating raw sprouts. I’m staying clear of uncooked sprouted beans. I think you should avoid them, too: “Bean sprouts consumed raw or lightly cooked are most likely to carry … bacteria, so thoroughly cooking them should remove disease-causing microbes.”
But it seems tricky and time consuming to sprout your grains and beans, right? Not at all! Yesterday, I found this video that makes sprouting easy. You simply soak your quinoa, garbanzos, or lentils in a bowl filled with water overnight. In the morning, you rinse them, put them back in the (empty) bowl, and cover the bowl with a paper towel. Leave them there for a day or two, spraying or rinsing them twice each day. After that, they might be ready for the belly or the fridge. Best to eat them right away.
But “most sprouts take 3-10 days, depending on which kind of seed you use and at what stage of maturity you harvest the sprouts. For example, you can eat sprouted grains in just 3-4 days, but it will take 7-10 days for the same grains to turn into wheatgrass” (p. 3 of 31, 16%). “Sprouting beans is particularly easy and takes just 2-4 days. Black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, white beans, adzuki beans, cowpeas, black-eyed peas, garbanzos, peas, and lentils are just some of the legumes you can sprout” (p. 11 of 31, 40%). And “smaller seeded grains like quinoa, amaranth, and millet can be sprouted also …. Quinoa … germinates quickly (within 24 hours)” (p. 15 of 31, 50%).
And “as long as you are using raw grains—meaning grains that have not been processed, heat treated, or roasted—you can sprout them! … You can also sprout legumes, seeds, and nuts!” (https://ohmyveggies.com/how-to-sprout-grains/).
As a student, you have the right to eat healthy on a budget. After all, no student needs to suffer ramen noodles. And don’t try sprouting a ramen noodle. It’s already dead.