Detoxing from Radiation, Heavy Metals, Cleansing & Restoring Your Body – Naturally
"Fighting Radiation Exposure – Naturally
By: Dr. Loretta Lanphier, ND, CN, HHP, CH (plus) added information by: Yolanda Bertaud
With the recent nuclear catastrophe happening in Japan as well as the probability that nuclear events will continue to be a part of our world, it’s prudent to have good reference information as to how the body can be supported (using natural means) and protected should high radiation exposure become a reality. Knowledge and information empower and should always propel one toward effective preparation and planning, not fear. The power of fear is destructive in that it paralyzes resulting in unwise decisions. Along with knowledge and preparedness, we must also be aware of the very real probability that the general public will not be privy to factual information. Hopefully my readers will copy this information and place in a safe place for future reference.
Fighting Radiation & Chemical Pollutants with Foods, Herbs, & Vitamins by Steven R. Schechter, ND was required reading when I was studying for my ND. It’s difficult now to find copies at a reasonable price of this out of print but very informational book. Below are some of the chapter titles and information that Dr. Schechter deals with in his book as well as some of my own research/suggestions.
“These foods and food substances will enhance the immune system and protect against the dangerous side effects of radiation.”
–Dr. Steven R. Schechter.
The time to implement these foods is now in order to build up the body as well as the immune system. Most of the foods and vitamins/minerals are “protective” meaning that they should be implented before a radiation event occurs.
Each of these can be researched individually on the Internet such as “bee pollen+nuclear radiation protection”, etc. in order to find out how it is helpful/useful to the body.
Fighting Radiation with Food
Sea Vegetables – According to a 1964 McGill University study published in the “Canadian Medical Association Journal,” sodium alginate from kelp reduced radioactive strontium absorption in the intestines by 50 to 80 percent. The sodium alginate allowed calcium to be absorbed through the intestinal wall while binding most of the strontium, which was excreted out of the body. Some of the more popular sea vegetables to consume are kelp, arame, wakame, dulce and kombu. Canadian researchers reported that sea vegetables contained a polysaccharide substance that selectively bound radioactive strontium and helped eliminate it from the body. In laboratory experiments, sodium alginate prepared from kelp, kombu, and other brown seaweeds off the Atlantic and Pacific coasts was introduced along with strontium and calcium into rats. The reduction of radioactive particles in bone uptake, measured in the femur, reached as high as 80 percent, with little interference with calcium absorption. “The evaluation of biological activity of different marine algae is important because of their practical significance in preventing absorption of radioactive products of atomic fission as well as in their use as possible natural decontaminators.” Source: Y. Tanaka et al., “Studies on Inhibition of Intestinal Absorption of Radio-Active Strontium,” Canadian Medical Association Journal 99:169-75, 1968.
The Atomic Energy Commission recommends for maximum protection against radioactive poisoning for humans, taking a minimum of 2 to 3 ounces of sea vegetables a week or 10 grams (two tablespoons) a day of sodium alginate supplements. During or after exposure to radiation, the dosage should be increased to two full tablespoons of alginate four times daily to insure that there is a continual supply in the GI or gastrointestinal tract. There may be a rare concern of constipation but this can be avoided if the sodium alginate is made into a fruit gelatin. Agar, derived from sodium alginate in kelp, is a safe, nontoxic substance that can be used as a thickening agent or gelatin.
Shiitake, Matsutake, Chantrel — mushrooms are a great source of riboflavin, niacin, and selenium. Selenium, of course, is an antioxidant that works with vitamin E to protect cells from the damaging effects of free radicals. Oftentimes, many individuals may not be taking full advantage of selenium, or other nutrients that mushrooms often contain such as potassium. In the Baltimore study on Aging, men with the lowest blood selenium levels were 4 to 5 times more likely to have prostate cancer compared to those with the highest selenium levels. One medium portabella mushroom has even more potassium than a banana or a glass of orange juice (remember to always juice your own oranges, don’t buy the chemical filled commercial junk).
Utilizing these powerful healing feeds in your diet can not only boost your overall health and mental clarity, but it can help defend against potentially life-threatening diseases. Remember to always purchase 100% high quality organic whenever possible, and avoid toxic additives like high-fructose corn syrup.
Bee Pollen – Studies show that bee pollen can significantly reduce the usual side effects of both radium and cobalt-60 radiotherapy and also the sickness after massive abdominal x-rays. One study showed that the proliferation of cancer cells stopped in cancerous tumors induced in mice. (This is only indicative and does not purport to be medical advice. One should go to the source and study the relevant information before drawing conclusions. Try to get real bee pollen from an organic bee keeper, uncooked.)
Bee Propolis - Besides the healing and anti bacterial qualities of this substance, it has been effective in clinical stages of radioepithelitis, i.e. inflammation of epithelial tissue due to radiation. (Same as above. Get unheated, raw organic honey; it is a good source of pollen, royal jelly and propolis.)
Beets – Organic Beets have been shown to rebuild hemoglobin of the blood after exposure to radiation. Rats fed a diet of 20 percent beet pulp were able to prevent cesium-137 absorption and 97 to 100 percent more effectively than rats given no beets.
Dried, Primary-Grown Nutritional Yeast – Besides having Vitamin E, it also contains the nucleic acids RNA and DNA, both of which have been shown to have radio protective qualities. It has been shown to help rebuild and regenerate cells damaged by radiation, and also to produce relief from radiation poisoning and it’s many horrible symptoms. Nutritional yeast has a good amount of many important nutrients. Primary –grown yeasts bonds with and absorb heavy metals such as uranium, lead and mercury!
Garlic - Garlic’s high sulfur content supports natural antioxidant systems like glutathione. Garlic extracts protect red blood cells from radiation damage by a glutathione-related mechanism. In mice, garlic extracts prevented radiation damage to chromosomes in vulnerable bone marrow cells.
Onions – Cysteine, present in onions, binds with and deactivates both the radioactive isotopes and toxic metals such as cadmium, lead and mercury. The sulfur in cysteine helps the kidneys and liver detoxify the body.
Chlorophyll – A Report by Scottist in 1986 and report from Japan showed that increase absorption of Cadmium by Chlorella and increased excretion of Cadmium by threefold after intake of Chlorella from animal testing. Chlorella can also detoxify Uranium, Lead, Copper, PCB. Source: ” A good Health Guide: Chlorella ” by William H Lee. R. Ph.D. and Michael Rosenbaum, M.D. Guinea pigs on a diet rich in chlorophyll showed increased resistance to lethal X-rays. U.S. Army report in 1950
(*)Chlorophyll, The Green Nutrient Powerhouse
As you may know, Chlorophyll is actually responsible for the green pigmentation in plants. The biomolecule is what absorbs energy from the sun to facilitate photosynthesis in plants. Vital to metabolic functions such as growth and respiration, chlorophyll acts as the ‘blood’ of the plant, and it also provides powerful benefits to human health. Amazingly, research has found that chlorophyll can actually help to expel toxic mercury from your body — a truly potent quality in modern society, where mercury has run rampant. Even high-fructose corn syrup, a ubiquitous ingredient that populates supermarkets worldwide, has been found to contain mercury. Beyond removing mercury from your body, chlorophyll has a whole host of other benefits.
(*)Overall Health Benefits of Chlorophyll
According to peer-reviewed research, chlorophyll has been found to:
Help prevent cancer: Studies published in the journals Carcinogenesis and Food and Chemical Toxicology highlight the ability of chlorophyll to actually inhibit carcinogenesis.
Provide antioxidants & anti-inflammatory benefits: Carrying high levels of the vitamins A, C and E, chlorophyll has strong antioxidant capacity and has also been found to help reduce inflammation.
Rapid delivery of magnesium: A highly alkalizing effect, chlorophyll is a powerful source of readily available magnesium.
Contain protein, calcium, and folic acid: These nutrients are essential in red blood cells and boosting your immune system.
Altogether, this powerful string of healing foods will be reinforcing your immune system, removing waste, and much more — but where’s the true flavor? You may be pleased to learn that chocolate is the next top food, though it is important to choose the right kind.
Oils – Plant oils such as unrefined and cold-pressed olive oil, flaxseed oil.
Foods rich in pectin – Pectin is able to bind radioactive residues and remove them from the body. It also acts as a natural chelating agent. Apples, guavas, plums, gooseberries, oranges and other citrus fruits are recommended. Be sure to effectively wash all fruit/vegetables before consuming.
Fighting Radiation with Vitamins & Minerals
Vitamin A – In 1974, researchers from India found that vitamin A, when taken internally by humans, hastened recovery from radiation. In 1984, Dr. Eli Seifter and a team of researchers fro the Albert Einstein College of Medicine….reported vitamin A and beta-carotene counteracted both partial and total body gamma radiation. It also improved the healing of wounds; reduced weight loss, thymic and splenic atrophy, and adrenal enlargement; and prevented gastro-ulceration and an abnormal decrease in red and white blood cell formation. (The therapeutic purposes, 25,000 to 35,000 IU are recommended for adults. During emergencies or crisis situations, intensive exposure may warrant as much as 40,000 to 100,000 IU of beta-carotene, but should be taken for no more than three to four weeks. Infants should not consume high amounts. This info is only very partial and you should consult the book for specifics.)
Vitamin C & Bio-flavonoids – Italian researchers in 1966 found that Vitamin D, in combination with vitamins A and the entire B Complex, helps remove radioactive isotopes such as strontium-85 and strontium-90 from the bones and the body. Vitamin D also helps protect against some common pollutants, including lead and cadmium, according to Airola in How to Get Well.
Vitamin E (natural not synthetic) – Radiation destroys leukocytes in both tissues and the blood, according to S. L. Robbins in Pathologic Basis of Disease ( W. B. Saunders, 1974). In Japan, I. Kurokawa and co-workers found that blood given vitamin E maintained a white cell count twice as high as blood not given vitamin E but exposed to the same radiation. Vitamin E has also been shown to produce internal and external protection in mice irradiated by cesium-137. Vitamin E and selenium are best taken at the same time since selenium preserves vitamin E.
Interesting to note about the ACE (Vitamins A-C-E) - A remarkable study among X-ray technicians reveals just how powerful antioxidant vitamins can be. Radiology techs are nominally protected by elaborate shielding, but they’re still exposed to unnaturally high levels of radiation over the course of a lifetime. As a result they tend to have higher levels of tissue oxidation. But when a group of techs was supplemented with vitamins C (500 mg) and E (150 mg) daily for 15 weeks, their markers of tissue oxidation plummeted, and their levels of natural antioxidants (such as glutathione in red blood cells) rose significantly. (Kayan M, Naziroglu M, Celik O, Yalman K, Koylu H. Vitamin C and E combination modulates oxidative stress induced by X-ray in blood of smoker and nonsmoker radiology technicians. Cell Biochem Funct. 2009 Oct;27(7):424-9.)
B3 Nicotinic Acid – Have on hand the Acid form of B3 rather than the salt form, Niacinamide, which is basically useless. Several sources indicate that large doses of niacin B3 were used in treating victims of radiation poisoning after the Chernobyl meltdown. B3 will cause the body to detox and therefore it is wise to make sure that your liver has been detoxed and is supported properly. Chemical poisoning slows down the liver.
Calcium – Protects against strontium-90, calcium-45 and other radioisotopes.
Magnesium – Like Calcium, magnesium prevents the uptake of strontium-90 and other radioisotopes. It helps to eliminate already absorbed strontium-90 as well. One study has shown that exposure to gamma radiation can decrease calcium and magnesium levels in the blood. As a result, optimal levels of both minerals in the diet are essential after one is exposed to higher amounts of radiation.
Selenium – As selenomethionine. Has been shown to decrease the mortality rate of rats exposed to irradiation, and to alleviate leucopenia (abnormal decreases of white blood corpuscles). Selenium greatly reduces cancer in animals exposed to cancer-causing agents.
Zinc – Natural zinc will help the body eliminate several toxic heavy metals, including cadmium, aluminum, lead, and excess copper.
Potassium – Cesium-137, cesium-134, potassium-40, and potassium-42 are radioactive, competitive sister elements of natural potassium, all of which are in the same chemical family. These radionuclides are absorbed by the body when there is a deficiency of natural potassium. They concentrate primarily in the reproductive organs and the muscles. Cesium-137 is common in nuclear fallout, and can often be detected in our food, soil, and water. The authors of one study described our biosphere as “contaminated with radiocesium.” Researchers discovered that after the accident at Chernobyl, iodine-131 and cesium-137 were the most prevalent radionuclides in samples of food from the USSR and from Poland, Hungary, and other parts of Eastern Europe. Cesium-137 is also already being used in some countries to irradiate foods as a means of extending their shelf life at the supermarket. Research by the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences demonstrates that natural potassium decreases the concentration of radiocesium. Begin to add potassium rich foods such as bananas, potatoes+peels, etc. If a nuclear event escalates in which cessium is being released, then also adding supplemental potassium is recommended. Potassium regulation is affected by magnesium. For magnesium deficiency include leafy green veggies, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and black beans
Iron – Research done in Czechoslovakia showed that whole body irradiation disturbed absorption of iron, and functions of red blood cells, plasma, and bone marrow. Other researchers found that amma-irradiation of the whole body or of the abdomen decreased absorption of iron, vitamin B12 and lipids.
MSM – As plants take in MSM from the soil they change it into amino acids such as methionine, cysteine and taurine which can protect against radiation as well as chelate heavy metals for elimination from the body. MSM also regulates the fluid that covers the airway surface of the lungs, preventing an inflammatory response and helping to regulate the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide.
Note: Not All Supplements are Safe! Be be mindful to purchase supplements that are “Labeled” properly. Look out for soy, corn derivatives, and some use GM microorganisms to produce their products. Supplements that are most likely to contain GMOs have vitamin E, vitamin B12, and citric acid. Download a free copy of “Non-GMO Shopping Guide” from the ResponsibleTechnology.org
Fighting Radiation with Herbs
Siberian Ginseng – Soviet researchers have reported that eleuthero extract has radio-protective abilities, and can be used therapeutically in conditions of acute and chronic radiation and sicknesses such as hemorrhaging, severe anemia, dizziness, nausea, vomiting , and headaches due to x-rays.
Panax Ginseng – Hemorrhage was a symptom of humans exposed to atomic radiations in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Japanese research doctors found that “Panax ginseng prevented hemorrhaging tendency after x-irradiation.” Bone marrow death is one result of radiation damage to blood-forming tissues. It occurs ten to twenty days after exposure to high doses of radiation. Panax ginseng extract prevents bone marrow death and accelerates normalization of red and white blood cell counts in animal studies.
Gingko Biloba – According to Science News Daily, extracts of its leaves contain antioxidant compounds including glycosides and terpenoids known as ginkgolides and bilobalides. These compounds are thought to protect cells from damage by free radicals and other reactive oxidizing species found in the body. These are generated continuously by the body’s normal metabolism, and in excess in some diseases or after exposure to pollution or radiation. They damage proteins, DNA and other biomolecules and left unchecked can kill cells. Results suggest that ginko biloba extracts can neutralize the free-radicals and oxidizing agents produced in the cells by the radiation and so prevent them from undergoing apoptosis.
Black & Green Tea – The polyphenol epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) derived from green tea protects animals from whole-body radiation, blocking lipid oxidation and prolonging life span. Several sources indicate that there were hundreds who survived Hiroshima at ground zero and the one thing they all had in common was drinking 20 cups of green tea per day. (Warning: I would question Black & Green teas due to the fact that there are high amounts of Fluoride & Aluminum found in most teas… please use discernment and read this very important article Title: Green Tea, Fluoride & the Thyroid).
Astragalus – An article published in Cancer, a publication of the American Cancer Society, reported that the aqueous extract of Astragalus membranaceus restored the immune functions in 90 percent of cancer patients studied.
Milk Thistle & Liver Support - A report suggests that milk thistle may prevent radiation toxicity. It enhances liver regeneration after exposure to heavy metals, radiation, or toxic chemicals. It reduces DNA damage and extends survival in animals exposed to dangerous levels of radiation. Silymarin’s free radical scavenging and direct antioxidant effects are credited with producing these results.
Fighting Radiation with Miscellaneous Substances
Distilled Water - Dr. Kenneth Sutter recommends drinking lots of distilled water for radiation poisoning. A tiny pinch of good quality sea salt in several glasses of distilled water each day will provide one with all the minerals and trace elements they need to stay healthy.
N-acetylcysteine – A glutathione precursor. As a source of sulfhydryl groups, NAC stimulates glutathione (GSH) synthesis, enhances glutathione-S-transferase activity, promotes liver detoxification by inhibiting xenobiotic biotransformation, and is a powerful nucleophile capable of scavenging free radicals. Studies at the Louisville School of Medicine have shown that Glutathione possesses a unique ability to slow the aging process. While Glutathione aids in the protection of all cells and membranes, a study at Harvard Medical School found that glutathione is especially able to enhance immune system cells, protecting against damage from radiation and helping to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy, x-rays, and alcohol. As a detoxifier of metals and drugs, glutathione also aids in the treatment of blood and liver disorders.
SSKI – Super Saturated Potassium Iodide. Protects ONLY the thyroid from radioactive iodine. If it is radioactive cessium that is being released, potassium iodide will not be effective for the areas where cessium will accumulate – mainly the reproductive system, kidneys and liver. (see potassium recommendations above) FDA – “It is also notable that the thyroid radiation exposures after Chernobyl were virtually all internal, from radio-iodines. Despite some degree of uncertainty in the doses received, it is reasonable to conclude that the contribution of external radiation was negligible for most individuals. This distinguishes the Chernobyl exposures from those of the Marshall Islanders. Thus, the increase in thyroid cancer seen after Chernobyl is attributable to ingested or inhaled radio-iodines. A comparable burden of excess thyroid cancers could conceivably accrue should U.S. populations be similarly exposed in the event of a nuclear accident. This potential hazard highlights the value of averting such risk by using KI as an adjunct to evacuation, sheltering, and control of contaminated foodstuffs.” This may reduce the risk of developing thyroid cancer in the future. Potassium iodide does not provide immediate protection from radiation damage, and does not have protective effects against other radiation exposure complications.
SSKI Dosage information: Adults: dose = 130mg KI; Children between 3 and 18 years of age: dose = 65mg KI; (Children who are 150 pounds or over should take the adult dose regardless of age.); Infants and children between 1 month and 3 years of age: dose =32mg KI; This dose is for nursing and non-nursing infants/children Newborns from birth to 1 month of age: dose = 16mg KI This dose is for both nursing and non-nursing newborn infants. Take one dose every 24 hours until the danger is past.
Beta-1,3 Glucan: Extracted from the cell walls of baker’s yeast it is a potent immune enhancer. It activates important macrophages and is also an anti oxidant. Studies by the Army showed that glucan was a powerful protectant against a lethal dose of radiation.
Lecithin – 2-3 tbsp. a day, will help counteract harmful effects of radiation. Be sure to purchase lecithin that is labeled Organic & NON-GMO!
Papain - In one particular study, 50 percent of rats that were given papain survived a normally lethal dose of radiation.
Thymus Extract – Animal studies demonstrate that thymus tissue extract can re-create immunity even after doses of radiation powerful enough to kill the all- important lymphoid tissue. The idea of thymus glandular feeding in cases of mild to extreme radiation exposure has been applied in numerous cases.
Charcoal – Has the ability to absorb and neutralize radioactive substances and some toxic materials. Researchers report that 10 grams or 1 tablespoon of charcoal can absorb about 3 to 7 grams of materials. German researcher found that charcoal air filters removed more than 70 percent of radioactive iodine from the air. Taking finely powdered charcoal has been found to be one-and-a-half times as effective as the tablets.
Organic Germanium 132 – Should be used in gram amounts for effectiveness. According to one study, “Radioactive rays release electrons that destroy cells and blood corpuscles….Germanium floating near the blood corpuscles skillfully catches those released electrons and lets them move around its nucleus.” In other studies mutagenesis of cells exposed to cesium-137 and gamma rays, was “remarkably reduced” without affecting cellular growth or survival. It seemed to improve the fidelity of DNA replication. Ge-132 protects cysteine, an amino acid with known protective value. Dose: 25 mg. to 100 mg. per day is often used in Japan. It can be derived from onions, pearled barley, and watercress.
Natural Geiger Counter: There is a plant that is a natural Geiger counter. The spiderwort plant is so sensitive to changes in radiation levels (its petals change color upon exposure) that it’s often used as a natural radiation detector (dosimeter), just as they use canaries in mines as detectors of poisonous gas. Some people like knowing that they have an ongoing monitoring system for radiation in the environment, and this is just another tip available in “How to Neutralize the Harmful Effects of Radiation or Radioactive Exposure.”
Sea Salt & Baking Soda & Clay - Add one pound of good quality sea salt and 1 pound of baking soda to chlorine-free water. Soak for 20 minutes and then rinse with cool water. Adding one pound of bentonite, or other safe clay, to the sea salt and baking soda will increase the removal of radiation. Some specialists who work with radioactive isotopes use this method to remove radiation from their body. For an abnormally high level of radiation exposure one can use this method three times a week for one month.
Sodium Bicarbonate – Dr. Mark Sircus writes, “So useful and strong is Sodium Bicarbonate that at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, researcher Don York has used baking soda to clean soil contaminated with uranium. Sodium bicarbonate binds with uranium, separating it from the dirt; so far, York has removed as much as 92 percent of the uranium from contaminated soil samples…the United States Army recommends the use of bicarbonate to protect the kidneys from radiation damage…sodium thiosulfate can be added to baths and that instantly neutralizes any chlorine in the bath water while simultaneously providing sulfur for the vital sulfur pathways.” “Uranium is one of the only metals that get significant bonding from carbonate. Just flushing a lot of bicarbonate through the system, along with whatever kidney support you are going to use, will be very helpful,” writes Dr. Chris Shade.
Bottom-line: As a general guideline, and based on personal research, the following is my recipe for adjusting acid-blood toward the direction of healthier alkaline-blood pH. Below are two separate examples — do one or the other but not both:
Mix 1/4-1/3 teaspoon of baking soda in a 12-16 ounce glass of tap or bottled water and consume 1 glass in the AM and 1 in the PM and swish it in your mouth (cavity prevention) before swallowing daily. In addition to, and at anytime when you experience heartburn, an extra glass may be necessary.
This following method is easy, convenient, and you’re more likely to be consistent with it. If you drink distilled or reverse osmosis water daily as your main source of water (cleanest there is, but acidic), mix 3/4 to 1 teaspoon/gallon. Tap and bottled waters are not as acidic (but very dirty) so you may want to adjust them to a lower 1/2 teaspoon/gallon. You can make adjustments with pH papers below.
Refrain from consuming straight baking soda and/or strong mixtures of the same. It can numb taste-buds and cause the skin from the roof of your mouth to peel (personal experience) not painful, just bothersome. In other words, strong alkalinity can burn you on its end of the scale similar to strong acids such as sulfuric or muriatic that burn on the acid side of the scale.
Probiotics - A 2007 study of 490 patients receiving radiation for various types of cancer found that those consuming probiotics throughout treatment were less likely to experience radiation-induced diarrhea.
Zeolite - Zeolites have been used to decontaminate animals, particularly sheep and reindeer, which have ingested radiation following nuclear disasters such as Chernobyl. Addition of zeolites to contaminated soils has shown to reduce up-take of radionuclides by plants, and hence, reduce the spreading of contamination through the food chain. (Introduction to Zeolite Science and Practice by Herman van Bekkum). Do not take any product containing zeolite if you are taking any prescription medication containing heavy metals, such as lithium, or containing platinum, which can be found in some cancer medications or Radiotherapy with chemotherapy check with your practitioner.
Juicing Raw Live Vegetable & Fruits – Juicing Live Fruits & Green Leafy Vegetables, would be one of the best nutritional healing and detoxing benefits you can give your body. Be sure to use more leafy green vegetables then fruits! Raw Food Nation
(*)Turmeric & Cayenne Pepper Nutrient Drink
For starters, Turmeric is one nutritional powerhouse that you should be consuming on a daily basis. Before purchasing any old Turmeric spice product, however, it is important that you buy the right kind. Look for pure Turmeric powder, as opposed to commercial curry powders that contain less concentrations of pure Turmeric. It is also highly preferable that you purchase 100% organic Turmeric to avoid fillers and lower quality ingredients. One great recipe involves Cayenne Pepper and Turmeric combined together in a health-enhancing recipe.
Take 1 teaspoon Turmeric & the smallest pinch of Cayenne Pepper and mix them with some olive oil in a glass shooter. This makes for a great start to the day, nourishing your body with vital nutrients. Alternatively, you can powder your breakfast meal choice with high quality Turmeric or purchase a whole food Turmeric supplement if that is not an option. Next up, it is time to discover the benefits of green superfoods.
Sprouting Seeds – Sprouting seeds is easy, fresh, quick & available, or purchase your sprouts at a local farmer’s market/organic food store.
Sprouts the Super Food – “Powerhouse of Nutrients”
Consuming sprouts is like eating live vegetable food. Think for yourself, how nutrient-dense a growing food could be…It is said that sprouts ‘represent the miracle of birth’. They are in the true sense, super foods. They are alkaline, whole, pure, and natural foods. It is inexcusable that though aware of their miraculous effects, we do not take full advantage of them. We scour departmental and organic stores, looking for health foods and recipes, but forget to eat ordinary sprouts on daily basis – considering them a poor cousin of high-fashion health foods.
Sprouts the Super Food
Sprouts are the cheapest and most convenient source of complete nourishment. They are food for long-term health and wellness. If consumed judiciously and chosen over other foods, they can prevent diseases and lifestyle-related ailments. Sprouting a seed enables it to produce an enormously enhanced bundle of nutrients.A sprout is at the transitional stage between seed and plant. It is, to put it simply, a baby plant. These are essentially pre-digested foods as the seeds’ own enzymes do most of the work. The nutritional changes that occur during sprouting primarily happen because complex compounds get broken down into simpler forms. This, added to development of some essential nutrients, constituents, and breakdown of anti-nutrients, makes the whole phenomenon of sprouting possible. Metabolic activity in dormant seeds is initiated as soon as they are hydrated during soaking.Sprouted seeds acquire natural increased digestibility and nutrients as compared to unsprouted seeds. They provide us with all the essential minerals and vitamins, and must ideally form a part of our daily diets.The sprouting process:On sprouting, grains, legumes, and seeds turn into super foods. They then become an extremely sound source of protein, fiber, & vitamin B.All edible grains, legumes, and seeds can be sprouted. The following are generally used for sprouting:Grains: Wheat (wheat grass is the sprouted form of wheat. It must be juiced. Soak hard wheat grains for 12 hours and then grow in soil. It will be ready in 12 days’ time), maize, ragi, barley, bajra.Seeds: Alfalfa seeds (sensitive to heat, ready in seven days), sesame seeds, radish seeds, fenugreek seeds (bitter in taste. To be mixed with milder sprouts to tone it down, ready in 9 days’ time), coriander seeds, pumpkin seeds, and musk melon seeds, groundnut.Legumes: Green gram, Bengal gram, chickpea, kidney beans, dried peas.Oats: (oat groats) to be used — ready in 3 to 4 days), buckwheat, quinoas are foods which are lesser known as sprouts, but are at the same time, highly nutritious. They should be sprouted and consumed if readily available.Alfalfa is called the ‘father of all foods’ or the ‘king of sprouts’. It is highly rich in minerals like manganese and is also a rich source of vitamins A, B, C, E, and K. It also contains all the essential amino acids. Alfalfa contains most of the essential amino acids and has a higher concentration of calcium than milk. The lesser explored sesame seed sprouts are also said to be great source nutrients. They too, contain most of the essential amino acids and are high in vitamin E and vitamin B complex, apart from other nutrients.The sprouting process
Firstly, one has to ensure that the seeds, legumes or grains will easily sprout. (For instance, soyabeans are said to become sour and do not sprout too well; and wheat has to be grown in soil). The seeds should be thoroughly washed and then soaked in fresh water overnight. The time span of soaking is mostly 12 hours, though it depends on the size of the seeds. Next morning the seeds should be rinsed and the water drained off. Soaking turns the seed soft and laden with water. They eventually germinate and become sprouts in two to three days’ time, depending upon the temperature and humidity. One should not soak the seeds for a longer period than required, as the seeds may rot and ferment. After they sprout, they should be stored in a refrigerator.Nutritional Benefits:
The ISS (International Speciality Supply, USA) is a company that supplies sprouts to many countries. It describes in detail, the nutrient changes which occur during the process of sprouting. On sprouting, there is a tremendous increase in nutrients as compared to the dried embryo. The vitamins, minerals and protein content substantially increase with a simultaneous decrease in caloric and carbohydrate content. Pulses and seeds show a very low water content. This, however, tends to increase tenfold when converted into sprouts. The ISS elaborates that sprouted green gram (mung beans) have an 8.3 percent increase of water content over dried beans. Hence the nutritional value of sprouted and dried mung beans can be compared by multiplying the analyzed nutrients of sprouted mung beans by the factor of 8.3. Based on this criterion, the changes found in sprouted mung beans when compared with the figures for the beans in the dried state are as follows:
Energy content – calories Decrease 15 percent
Total carbohydrate content Decrease 15 percent
Protein availability Increase 30 percent
Calcium content Increase 34 percent
Potassium content Increase 80 percent
Sodium content Increase 690 percent
Iron content Increase 40 percent
Phosphorous content Increase 56 percent
Vitamin A content Increase 285 percent
Thiamine or Vitamin B1 content Increase 208 percent
Riboflavin or Vitamin B2 content Increase 515 percent
Niacin or Vitamin B3 content Increase 256 percent
Ascorbic acid or Vitamin C content An infinite increase
The increase in protein availability is of great significance. It is a valuable indicator of the enhanced nutritional value of a food when sprouted. The amazing fact is that sprouts are a food — very easily available to all sections of society, and yet the biggest storehouse of all nutrients.The reduction in carbohydrate content indicates molecules being broken down during sprouting to allow absorption of atmospheric nitrogen and re-formation of amino-acids. The resultant protein is the most easily digestible of all proteins available in foods.
Grains, legumes are nowhere even near to be considered a source of vitamin C. However, when sprouted, they reveal significant quantities of this vitamin. The infinite increase in Vitamin C or ascorbic acid derives from their absorption of atmospheric elements during growth.
Sprouts supply food in a pre-digested form — food, which has already been acted upon by enzymes and simplified. During sprouting, much of the starch is broken down into simple sugars such as glucose and sucrose by the action of the enzyme ‘amylase’. Proteins are converted into amino acids and amides. Fats and oils are converted into simpler fatty acids by the action of the enzyme lipase. Also, during sprouting there is s reduction in the gas producing quality of beans. Mainly oligosaccharides have been held responsible for gas formation. As the process of germination ends and sprouting begins, the content of oligosaccharides is reduced by 90 percent. The content of fiber and water increases tremendously, which is a boon for a healthy digestive system.
Sprouts are a good source of chlorophyll, said to have anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. They are highly beneficial foods for losing weight too. They keep one full for a long time and also prevent over-eating as one feels satisfied on consuming just a handful.
Sprouts are an extremely inexpensive method of obtaining a concentration of protein, vitamins, minerals and enzymes. Eating sprouts is the safest and best way of getting the advantage of complete nutrition.
Cooking with Sprouts:
Sprouts could be eaten in various ways, other than just the standard salads that we generally know of. They could be used in the following ways:
To make hummus to be used as dips, for sandwich fillings (sprouted chickpea is best suited for this).
To make healthy vegetables and curries.
To be crushed lightly and added to pancakes, or used as a filling for pancakes.
To prepare a variety of stir fries.
To cook and serve with rice.
To be added to yoghurts.
To be juiced up (wheat grass is a sprout).
To be dried and turned into malt. This is called malted flour. It is especially given to babies in the form of porridge as it is easily digestible and has a high nutrient density. Ragi malt (Red millet malt) is very commonly prepared in southern India. It’s highly rich in calcium and iron, and is relished by all age groups. The dry ragi sprouts are roasted with wheat, green mung dal, and almonds, and are then ground and cooked with milk and sugar. Malted multigrain flours are also readily available. They can be had as porridge, they can be mixed in flour, or can be added to various food preparations.
Read more: http://www.medindia.net/patients/lifestyleandwellness/sprouts-the-super-food.htm#ixzz1mXMabGNu"