Seeds are one of the most nutrient dense foods we can eat. Meaning they pack a big punch when it comes to nutrition (vitamins, minerals, fiber, protein, antioxidants and healthy fats!) Plus, they are portable and easy to add to all kinds of recipes! Seeds have a long list of health benefits too from lowering blood sugar and cholesterol to improving digestive function and mental health! A seed is simply defined as an “embryonic plant that is surrounded by a protective outer covering also known as a plant’s unit of reproduction.”
In the nutrition world there is crossover between seeds, beans, nuts and grains. Grains are considered seeds of grasses. Beans are considered seeds of legumes. In all cases seeds contain the necessary components once germinated to produce new life!!
I’ve highlighted just a few common seeds, their nutrients and health benefits:
In Garden Nutrition of Genesis… “And God said, ‘See I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food.’” Gen. 1:29. Seeds replicate life. It makes sense that the food instructions reflected God’s purpose in foods: REGENERATION of physical life.
That’s why it also makes sense that seeds could be helpful in fertility and hormone regulation. Here’s a slide snip from Module 3 Focused Nutrition Lesson 5 to illustrate this concept of seed cycling for women.
But many times in nutrition there is another side of the story. While seeds of all types are nutritional powerhouses, supporting life in so many ways, they are also INCOMPLETE. You say, “wait a minute, I thought you just said they contain all the essential elements for life?” They do. But there’s a problem. An inhibitor actually. Much of their nutrition is BOUND. The nutrients cannot provide their benefit unless the nutrients are FREED through the process of sprouting or germination. When we sprout seeds whether its grains, beans or seeds we are releasing the nutrients. Sprouting neutralizes phytic acid and other substances like lectins and saponins – that are enzyme inhibitors – that prevents the absorption of all those vital nutrients. PLUS sprouting multiplies the nutrients and produces new enzymes that can help in the breakdown and nutrient absorption. Sprouting involves rinsing in water for a certain length of time.
Here is a table with our six seed sprouting times:
The sprouting of seeds has a long history. It is a process that multiplies the nutrients, provides enzymes to breakdown and absorb and allows new life in the plant and in us! Throughout this sprouting process the seed becomes a NEW CREATION, richer in nutrients and more vital to our wellbeing.
Another method mentioned in the table above is grinding or crushing. This removes the outer covering so the seeds will not simply pass through the digestive tract undigested and useless. The nutrients are not multiplied as in sprouting, but at least they are available for our bodies to break down IF we have the digestive enzymes to make that happen. Practical tip: Anytime you see whole seeds in chips or breads or other foods, know that you will probably not be getting the nutritional benefit unless they are sprouted or ground to release those nutrients and make them able to be absorbed and used. It’s even more beneficial to cook seeds (grains and beans especially) after sprouting.
In conclusion… Why is the nutrition in these life-giving seeds BOUND? What caused these inhibitors to be present in the first place? If God was providing a perfect food in a perfect garden, why would this sprouting or FREEING of nutrients be necessary?
The reason is… God’s design was CORRUPTED.
In next week’s Food Faith Friday video on our FACEBOOK PAGE and E! Journal post we’ll take a closer at this corruption concept through the lense of the SOIL. How does the SOIL reflect nutrition science and Biblical history?
I’m excited to share more with you through the E! Journal and our Eureka! Holistic Nutrition Facebook Page Live each Friday afternoon!
You’re also invited to join our private Eureka! Holistic Nutrition Facebook Group for more nutrition and healthy living resources shared from a Christian, faith based perspective!
Here is the link for this week’s – Food Faith Friday VIDEO: The Seed