Are grains good for you? Bad for you? With so much conflicting information, what should you believe? I hope this post will shed some light on the controversial topic of grains. All information is based on my own education, research, and experience.
Are grains good or bad for you?
Let’s start with the fundamental question: are grains good or bad? In my opinion, neither. Well, both.
Let me explain: In general, conventional grains can be highly inflammatory for many people. Especially, gluten-filled grains. But, why are grains so inflammatory? Great question. Grains are generally inflammatory for the following reasons:
- Our soil is continuing to decrease in nutrients.
- GMO’s are on the rise.
- Food processing methods are becoming increasingly popular.
- Conventional grains contain phytic acid, making them hard to digest.
For all these reasons and more, grains are not the great source of nutrients that they used to be. However, this is where bio-individuality comes into play. Not everyone has an inflammatory response to grains, which is great news. But, without a doubt, conventional grains increase the likely hood of inflammatory responses. As a form of self protection, most grains contain anti-nutrients, like phytic acid, to ward off predators. And yep, you guessed it: when we consume these grains, we consume these anti-nutrients. I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t sound very healthy to me! In my experience and opinion, opting for organic, gluten-free, sprouted grains can be a game-changer. In fact, these nutrient-dense grains can provide anti-inflammatory benefits, instead of creating inflammation in the body.
What are sprouted grains?
Sprouted grains are grains that they are just entering the germination process. At this point, the grains contain the highest amount of bio-available nutrients. These bio-available nutrients are the easiest for our bodies to digest. As a result, we can optimally break down the grains and absorb it’s nutrients. To put it simply: sprouted grains, as opposed to conventional grains, increase the absorption of nutrients in our bodies. Consequently, we can experience a host of health benefits, like:
- Increased immune function
- Improved gut and brain health
- Decreased inflammation
- Weight loss
- Increased satiety
- Regulated bowel movements
- Healthier skin
- & so much more
How to Sprout Grains at Home
Now that we know more about the health benefits of sprouted grains, how can we benefit from these nutrient-rich foods? Nowadays, you can find pre-soaked grains at many health food stores. My favorite brand is One Degree– their sprouted oats are delicious and convenient! Alternatively, you can sprout your own grains at home! Despite sounding complicated, it really is quite easy. I recommend always using gluten-free, organic grains to ensure higher nutrient content.
To sprout grains at home follow these easy directions:
- In a large glass mason jar, soak the grains in filtered water. Use double the amount of water to grains.
- Let the grains soak at room temperature for the appropriate time (see guide below).
- After the soaking time, drain the water and refill with fresh water. Slowly drain the water using a mesh lid to create a humid environment.
- Repeat step 3 ever few hours, or at least twice per day.
- In 1-4 days, your sprouted grains will be ready (see guide below).
I love making Honey & Blueberry Sprouted Oatmeal for breakfast in the morning! It’s a delicious, nutritious, and quick meal to fuel you for your busy day.
- Have you tried sprouting your own grains at home before? I’d love to hear about your experience. Share in the comments, below!