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Protein Packed Snack with A Nutrient Dense Punch



As a women’s health coach, I work with a lot of busy mums. These bloody superheros are the glue keeping everything BUT with all the best intensions in the world their nutrition sometimes is falls by the way-side. This is one of the reasons, I am always looking for quick, easy & powerful hacks to up their (and my) nutritional game.


If you’re looking for something to pimp-up your next snack or meal, I’d encourage you to give sprouts a go.




SPROUT BENEFITS

  1. Easy to digest

  2. Packed full of nutrients like folate, phosphorus, calcium, protein and vitamin K

  3. Easy to grow, all you need is water and two days

  4. Perfect for people with gut absorption issues, leaky gut, IBS or if you generally react with gas and bloating when eating beans or legumes

  5. Increases nutrient absorption including B12, iron, magnesium & zinc

  6. Unlocks beneficial digestive enzymes


Tip: if you usually react to beans or legumes, try a few sprouts first and wait 2 hours before having a more generous portion.

The reason that some people struggle with indigestion is because we aren’t designed to break down anti-nutrients in plants. Anti-nutrients block the absorption of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients.


Luckily, sprouting and soaking seeds can break these anti-nutrients down, making grains, seeds, beans & legumes more digestible and at the same time, unlocking healthy compounds found in plant foods. (1)

Studies have found that sprouting increases the availability of nutrients. This includes folate, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, iron, zinc, protein and vitamin K.


METHOD

  1. Soak bean/legume in filtered water (see chart below for timings for different plants)

  2. Drain

  3. Leave out on the side, out of direct sunlight in a sprouting jar or tray for at least one day.

  4. They are ready to eat as soon as you see the little sprouty tail

  5. Pop them in the fridge in the same jar with an airtight lid and store for 2-3 days

Tip: The sprouting jars and seeds from Avogel uk health are a good place to start




In fact these little gems have more nutrients than the full grown plant so a handful of these gems on your eggs in the morning or over a salad or soup is a total non-brainer.


If you're a total beginner, mung beans are a great one to start.

Quick to sprout & really yummy.


Thanks to Dr Axe for his sprouting chart below which provides timings and ideas for different beans, legumes, grains and seeds to soak and then sprout.


Beans and Legumes

  • Chickpeas: 8–12 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Lentils: 8 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Adzuki beans: 8 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Black beans: 8–12 hours soaking, 3 days for sprouting

  • White beans: 8 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Mung beans: 24 hours soaking, 1–5 days for sprouting

  • Kidney beans: 8–12 hours soaking, 5–7 days for sprouting

  • Navy beans: 9–12 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Peas: 9–12 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • It’s not recommended to sprout red kidney beans as they contain a very toxic lectin called phytohaemagglutinin.


Grains

  • Buckwheat: 30 minutes–6 hours soaking (time varies), 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Amaranth: 8 hours soaking, 1–3 days for sprouting

  • Kamut: 7 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Millet: 8 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Steel Cut Oats (Irish Oats): 6 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Quinoa: 4 hours soaking, 1–3 days for sprouting

  • Wheat berries: 7 hours soaking, 3–4 days for sprouting

  • Wild rice: 9 hours soaking, 3–5 days for sprouting

  • Black rice: 9 hours soaking, 3–5 days for sprouting

Seeds

  • Radish seeds: 8–12 hours soaking, 3–4 days for sprouting

  • Alfalfa seeds: 12 hours soaking, 3–5 days for sprouting

  • Pumpkin seeds: 8 hours soaking, 1–2 days for sprouting

  • Sesame seeds: 8 hours soaking, 1–2 days for sprouting

  • Sunflower seeds: 8 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting

  • Broccoli seeds: 12 hours soaking, 2–3 days for sprouting



Broccoli sprouts are a favourite of mine as they can help the body with estrogen dominance by regulating your hormone levels and reducing the amount of estrogen present in your system through detox pathways. Estrogen dominance can affect a woman’s body in many ways including abnormal menstruation, headaches, bloating, anxiety, breast tenderness, endometriosis, fibroids, hormonal weight gain and some cancers (breast, ovarian & uterine).

My go-to ‘running out of the door’ snack is a spoonful of hummus with a pinch of mung bean or alfalfa sprouts. Super yummy, packed full of protein and it will keep you full and stop those sugar cravings in their tracks.


The kids love them too.


For more protein snack ideas, check out my recipe for these nutrient dense chocolate balls.


To keep up to date with more health hacks, sign up for my mailing list, and I promise not to turn up in your inbox more than once a week.


Let's take care of you.


Alisa x


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