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What are 'activated nuts' and why should I be eating them?

Raw nuts are a fantastic healthy snack, loaded with protein, healthy fats, fibre and important minerals like zinc, magnesium and calcium. However, nuts also contain natural chemicals that can interfere with the absorption of these nutrients. Raw nuts contain phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors that can reduce the body’s ability to absorb certain nutrients properly. Eating large amounts of raw nuts can put extra pressure on your digestive system and may cause uncomfortable digestive symptoms like bloating, heaviness and nausea. A simple way to avoid this is to activate them.

Activating nuts is an ancient and traditional practice that required the soaking of nuts and seeds in brine and letting them dry in the hot sun. Today, the nuts are usually soaked in salt water and then dehydrated.

Made with Love and Plants uses filtered water and Himalayan pink salt to soak the organic nuts for a period of time, dependant on the hardness of nut. This starts off the germination process, then they can be dehydrated at a low temperature before being used. Soaking and beginning the sprouting process increases the nutrient value of the nuts along with breaking down the problematic compounds that help enhance their digestibility. It also plumps out the nut and gives a much crunchier bite!

Activated nuts have been a health-food trend for a while now. And one of the major things that puts people off incorporating them into their diet is the additional expense of buying activated nuts without knowing what the benefits are. We all know that some nuts, depending on the variety, can be a pretty expensive snack food, and activated nuts can retail for almost double the price in some health-food stores. As you can see activating nuts can be time consuming but its not difficult, therefore going to all that expense is not always necessary, and you can activate nuts yourself. Or check them out on Made with Love and Plants treats & gifts page.

How to activate nuts:

1. Dissolve salt in enough water to cover the amount of nuts/seeds you are activating.

2. In a large bowl place your nut or seed of choice.

3. Cover with the salt water solution.

4. Soak for the required number of hours.

5. Strain and rinse the nuts.

- You can choose to eat your nuts now or continue with drying them out.

6. Spread over a dehydrator rack, or baking tray.

7. Dry in the dehydrator for around 12-24 hours.

8. If drying in the oven, set the oven at the lowest temperature possible and leave the door ajar. Stir or turn them occasionally, for the required drying time.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that while activating nuts can help nutrient absorption and aid digestion, it's not necessary to eat exclusively activated nuts, especially if you only eat a small amount of nuts each day. A mixture of both raw and activated nuts is great!

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