Updated: Nov 28, 2022
What is sprouting?
Sprouting essentially refers to seeds that have just germinated, and that are beginning to grow and are just a couple of days old. You eat them when they are in this stage of growth and they are known for their high nutrient content.
Sprouting is a fun, easy way to add some extra nutrients into your diet. If you buy the “pre-made” packs in the supermarket (e.g. Good4U), they are quite expensive, but if you do it at home, for same price you can buy a packet or two of the seeds, and it will of course yield far more and to be honest, it’s quite fun to do at home, especially as you don’t have to wait long for the sprouts to do their thing.
All you need is some fresh water, the seeds (of course), a container and a little bit of commitment and a bit of patience.
What are the benefits of sprouting?
Sprouts are good for our health as they contain vitamins, minerals, and essential amino acids (which are the building blocks of protein)
They are a good source of fibre - when you soak the sprouts, it actually increases the amount of fibre in the sprout (something clever to do with enzymes!) and are digestion friendly
They also reduce so-called “anti-nutrients” which are nutrients that can have an impact on the absorption of other vitamins and minerals. This means that it’s easier for your body to absorb the nutrients found in sprouts.
How do I do this from home?
Sprouting is something that you can do very easily from the comfort of your own home. There are various different companies that sell the simple equipment needed. The one that I purchased is from a company called BioSnacky, but there are plenty of other brands on the market.
When it comes to different things to sprout, there are a variety of different choices out there, some of the most popular include:
How can I incorporate sprouts into my diet?
Sprouts are great to add texture to a dish, as well as additional flavour of course! Add them to your salads, put them on top of avocado on toast, in a wrap, or add them to smoothies, stir them through a stew, add them to a stir fry.
You can also cook with them, but bear in mind that heating them reduces the nutritional benefits, so ideally avoid doing that if you can!
What’s in sprouts that can help with energy and weight management?
Sprouts contain B-vitamins, which are essential for the production of energy!
Fibre and protein helps us to feel fuller for longer, and balance blood sugar, which means you will experience less dips in energy, and also reduce cravings, which could help with weight management in the longer -term
Sprouts also contain small amounts of iron and magnesium, which are all involved in the production of energy in the body.
Possible risks associated with sprouting:
Because the sprouts grow in a room temperature environment and thrive on moisture, it’s been associated with salmonella and E. coli. They therefore have the potential to cause food poisoning.
It’s important to rinse the sprouts morning and evening and as soon as they are ready to harvest to transfer to an airtight container in the fridge and consume as soon as possible.
Sprouting is therefore ideally not recommended for those with weakened immune systems, during pregnancy, or for children.
Registered Nutritional Therapist
Amy Cottrell Nutrition does not claim to prevent, treat or cure any physical, mental or emotional conditions. These blog articles are written for educational & informational purposes only and are not a subsitute for medical advice.
Do not stop or start taking medication or supplements without first talking to your primary health care provider.