Not sure what sprouted grains are? In short, a sprouted grain is one that has begun sprouting, but is still not a full plant. Foods such as corn, wheat and oats can fall under the purview of sprouted grains, and they make enjoyable additions to plant-based diets.
Health Benefits of Sprouted Grains
When a seed or grain is sprouted, it has a few nutritional differences from its ungerminated counterparts. However, the difference may be negligible at best. There is no doubt that more research needs to be done to document specific health benefits, but the good news is that, as further research rolls in, the health benefits do seem genuine and increasingly important.
Different types of sprouted grains:
Sprouted brown rice
In short, sprouted grains seem to have proteins of better quality and may be a bit higher in carotenoids, vitamin C and other vitamins. They also seem to help with digestibility. For many people, the difference may not be noticeable enough, but vegetarians and vegans may see noticeable benefits, as sprouted grains possibly lead to more absorption of minerals such as zinc and iron. Diabetics may realize benefits too, as sprouted grains seem to help with weight control and blood sugar stability.
Incorporating Sprouted Grains Into Your Diet
Despite the ongoing research on the benefits of sprouted grains, many people already use the grains in their diets. As long as you are not pregnant, a child, in old age or experiencing immune system problems, you should be okay eating raw sprouted grains. Otherwise, you should cook the grains.
Sprouted grains are not necessarily organic. They may have been sprayed with pesticides, so to avoid chemicals, buy organic! You can also grow sprouted grains yourself, but timing is critical, as the process outlined here explains.
Ready to reap the health benefits of sprouted grains? Here are 7 ways you can enjoy them:
- Put it on your salad: Wheat is a popular sprouted grain. You can sprinkle these berries on your salad for extra crunch and nutrience.
- In baking: You can use sprouted whole grain flour in your baking. Since it contains less sugar, type 2 diabetics will especially benefit from this.
- Cook it like rice: Eat sprouted brown rice and bypass the white rice. This will also help diabetics.
- Stir fry it: Add sprouted grains to your stir fry to add texture to your veggie dish.
- Sprouted sandwich bread: Use it like you would use any bread. Make a sandwich, some tasty bread pudding or have it on the side like a sprouted dinner roll.
- Sprouted grain cereal: You can do so much with sprouted cereal! Enjoy it on its own as a snack, add it to your cookie dough or crush it and us it as a coating.
- Make a porridge: Simmer sprouted quinoa, buckwheat or millet with milk until the grains are tender. Top it off with your favorite fruits and a dollop of nut butter.