Why you should start soaking, sprouting fermenting foods for optimal digestion

Nuts, seeds, grains and legumes are excellent sources of protein, healthy fat, fibre and minerals.

If you are following a more natural whole-food diet, this can lead to us eating a higher load of certain chemicals which can cause gastric, discomfort as well as inhibiting the absorption of important nutrients. They fall into the following:

Phytate

Phytate is the salt of phytic acid and is a storage form of phosphorus in grains, legumes and nuts/seeds. It reduces the absorption of minerals such as iron, zinc, magnesium and calcium to name a few.

Tannins

Polyphenols are not denatured by heat. Tannins, an antioxidant polyphenol can inhibit the digestibility of protein, minerals and starch. They bind and disable digestive enzymes in the GI tract. The most notable concern is with the minerals iron, copper, and zinc – not calcium or manganese. Vitamin B1 can also be inactivated.

Oxalate

Oxalic acid is present in various plant foods, depending on the area grown. It decreases calcium absorption. You’ve likely heard that calcium from spinach is poorly absorbed – this is because of the oxalic acids in spinach.

Enzyme inhibitors

Trypsin inhibitors and Protease Inhibitors are one of the most common types.

Consuming enzyme inhibitors can cause GI distress that allows our bodies to break down the protein, creating a long-term protein deficiency. Raw nuts and soy are known to contain these compounds.

Lectins

Lectins are found in all plants especially seeds, legumes and grains, in high amounts they can cause harm to the digestive tract lining and interfere with the absorption of other nutrients.

9 Warning Signs You Have Poor Gut Health

Gut heath

How do we reduce the harmful chemicals and release the nutrients?

It’s simple really, soaking and sprouting foods alters the chemical load by reducing the phytic acid. Phytate binds to the available minerals in our gastrointestinal tract, stopping their absorption and can lead to deficiency. It also releases good minerals, enzymes and vitamins making them bioavailable to us.

What does soaking do?

Soaking removes the phytic acid and reduces tannins, so the nuts, seeds, grains and legumes can be absorbed correctly for proper digestion. This process improves their nutrition and bioavailability.

How do you soak ?

Soaking

A general rule is the bigger and denser the food, the longer it will need to soak.

Cover the seeds, nuts grains, beans or legumes with double the amount of water and leave to soak. The longer it needs to be soaked and the more you need to change the water rinsing off the food at the same time. Always discard the soaking water.

After soaking how do we use them?

Once soaked you can use the beans, lentils, nuts or seeds in your kinds of milk, vegetable curries recipes or dehydrate them to make flours or use in recipes like granolas or chocolate. You can also do the next stage which is sprouting.

What does sprouting do?

It unlocks the nutrients and can lower the anti-nutrients making the foods easier to digest as well.

How do you sprout?

Sprouts

It’s not a complicated thing to do. Sprouting takes this one step further. After soaking drain the water, rinse, refill with fresh water and drain them by positioning the jars on the side at an angle for several hours. This allows the jar to completely drain.

Placing the jars on a sunny windowsill will help with the sprouting process. Several rinsing and re-soaking periods allows for them to eventually germinate and sprout

What does Fermenting do?

It is a method in which the seeds naturally become fermented by combining them with wild yeast and an acidic liquid. It creates probiotics. This increases healthy bacteria, helpful enzymes, minerals and vitamins.
Fermentation

Once sprouting is completed, seeds can benefit even more by being fermented. Fermentation, Uncovered

Soaked grain recipes

If you’re looking for soaked grain recipes, check out the recipes below:

Overnight Oatmeal is super simple to make and cooks up in about five minutes in the morning.

Savoury chilla is a fantastic, nutrient-dense breakfast for little ones.

Vegetable Upma is another easy morning porridge made with jowar and spices.

Amaranth parfait
Further reads

7 Natural Drinks To Improve Gut Health

Eating Fibre for a Longer Life & Happier Gut

6 Natural Remedies To Treat & Prevent Bloating

Bloating is referred to the feeling of fullness you feel in your belly.

It is one of the most common indigestion problems that people face. Not chewing food properly, eating too quickly and overeating are some of the most common causes of bloating.

What Causes Gas To Build Up

Gas pain, bloating, and flatus frequency can be exacerbated by anything that causes diarrhoea or constipation. Gas can also be caused by:

• Overeating (Eating too much, eating too fast)

• Swallowing air while you eat or drink

• Smoking cigarettes

• Eating spicy and oily foods

• Excessive alcohol intake

• Caffeine

• Stress, fatigue and anxiety

Also read: Natural Constipation Cure

1.Chew On Fennel Seeds Or Drink Fennel Tea

Herbal tea

Fennel seeds, scientifically known as Foeniculum vulgare, are quite popular for their digestive properties. They contain compounds called estragole, fenchone, and anethole that exhibit antispasmodic properties, which can help relieve stomach gas and bloat.

Eat a pinch of fennel seeds at the end of a meal to benefit from its gas-reducing oils, This can be particularly helpful if you’ve eaten your fair share of cruciferous vegetables, such as broccoli, and you can already feel the belly-bloating a little bit, (something which is completely natural, by the way). It’s also a nice way to wrap up a big plate of carbs.

For those of you who don’t want to munch on fennel seeds like a chipmunk (though they are kind of delicious), you’ve got options.

You Will Need

• 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of crushed fennel seeds

• 1 cup of water

• Honey (optional)

What You Have To Do

1. Add the crushed fennel seeds to a cup of steaming water.

2. Let it steep for 5 to 10 minutes.

3. Strain and add honey for flavour.

4. Consume this tea daily.

5. Alternatively, you can also chew about half a teaspoon of fennel seeds daily.

2.Sip On Water With Freshly-Squeezed Lemon Juice

Brain boosting drink

Lemons are natural diuretics that exhibit mild laxative properties when mixed with warm water. This can be helpful in the treatment of salt-induced bloating as they reduce the amount of salt inside your body.

The citric acid that gives lemons their puckery taste can help break up or prevent kidney stones, which is one abdominal ailment they can help with. Lemons also are a source of soluble fiber, but to get this benefit.

You Will Need

• 1 teaspoon of lemon juice

• 1 glass of warm water

What You Have To Do

1. Add one teaspoon of lemon juice to a glass of warm water.

2. Consume this solution daily to get relief from stomach bloating.

3. You can also add honey for flavour.

3.Eat Ginger Or Drink Ginger Tea

Healthy spices

Ginger has been used for centuries to cure all kinds of basic ailments. Ginger possesses carminative properties that can help to expel gas and relieve cramps and indigestion. This shows the efficiency of ginger in treating stomach bloating along with its symptoms.

There are a few different ways to effectively get ginger in your system, but unfortunately, those sugary ginger chews aren’t one of them.

Instead, You Will Need

• 1 inch of ginger

• 1 cup of water

• Honey (optional)

What You Have To Do

1. Add ginger to a cup of water in a saucepan.

2. Bring the water to a boil and simmer for 3 to 5 minutes.

3. Strain and consume this daily.

4. You can also add honey to this for flavour.

4.Peppermint Tea

Peppermint tea

Peppermint tea is considered a great remedy to treat a bloated stomach. This herb aids digestion as its ingredients like menthol and menthone have digestive and antispasmodic properties. Peppermint also helps in stimulating the secretion of gastric juice, which in turn, expels gas.

You Will Need

• 1 teaspoon of dry peppermint leaves OR a handful of fresh peppermint leaves

• 1 cup of water

• Honey (optional)

What You Have To Do

1. Add the peppermint leaves to a cup of hot water and bring it to a boil in a saucepan.

2. Simmer for 5 minutes and strain.

3. Add honey for flavour and consume the peppermint tea before it turns cold.

5.Snack On A Banana

Banana for weightloss

Bananas are rich in fiber and also contain high levels of potassium. This makes them a great remedy for salt-induced stomach bloating as the high potassium content in them will regulate the sodium levels in your body.

Ripe bananas are known to aid with digestion and bowel movements, and the potassium found in this fruit manages the fluid levels in your body that are causing the bloating.

You Will Need

1-2 bananas

What You Have To Do

Include one or two bananas in your daily diet.

Also read: How To Eat A Banana For Weight Loss

6.Yogurt

Yogurt dip

Yoghurt is a natural probiotic that increases the levels of healthy bacteria in your body. These bacteria can accelerate your digestion, which can also help in reducing abdominal bloating.

Yoghurt has always been considered a cooling food for hyperacidity. It contains natural probiotics which replace the bad bacteria in the bowel and improve digestion. Similarly, the calcium and other components that are present in yoghurt can bind to the acid in the stomach and relieve hyperacidity and stomach bloating. If you wish to take charge of your stomach bloating issues, make sure you have a cup full of yoghurt after your lunch and dinner.

Also read: Top 7 Unique Fermented Indian Superfoods

Probiotics are also present in kombucha and sauerkraut. These foods are readily available in our country and are popular in the Western world.

You Will Need

1 cup of plain yoghurt

What You Have To Do

Consume one cup of plain yoghurt.

Also read: 10 Creative Yogurt Based Healthy Snacks

All the remedies listed in this article can be used to cure stomach bloating. You can try these remedies either individually or in combination for faster recovery. Additionally, taking a few precautions can help you avoid the recurrence of this condition.