Sprouts are an amazing super food that offer healthful benefits even when you consume a small amount. Whether you eat them as a snack or in a salad, adding sprouts to your daily diet will do wonders for your hair, skin, and digestive system. They can also benefit your mental health.
You can grow your own sprouts, which packs the biggest punch, or you can buy a vast variety right in the produce aisle. Eating different types can offer you an array of nutrients, but bean and alfalfa are the most common varieties of sprouts.
Types of Sprouts
• Mung Bean
You can grow them from any type of seed. If you combine multiple types in a single dish or snack on them throughout the day, you will reap plenty of benefits. However, enjoying one type of this super food can still offer value to your diet.
Nutrients Found in Sprouts
• Vitamin C
• Vitamin K
Protein enzymes are another reason to add a cup to your daily diet. These enzymes actually allow you to extract more vitamins and minerals from other food sources, too. Plus, bean sprouts contain a healthy dose (up to 35%) of plant protein. Vitamin contents are generally higher in sprouted seeds, beans, and nuts when compared to their whole food counterparts.
Here are 12 benefits of sprouts:
1. Digestion: The added enzymes and fiber work through your body. By increasing your stomach’s natural juices, the enzymes can work efficiently to break down your food. They can also help with constipation and diarrhea. Additionally, they might help to prevent colorectal cancer.
2. Weight loss: The same enzymes will also provide a boost to your metabolism. In addition, sprouts offer protein and fiber. Both fill you up, so adding them to your meals can also promote weight loss.
3. Anemia: Low iron affects many people, especially women. The iron content in sprouts not only works to prevent anemia, but you can use this food as a natural medicine to restore your iron levels. The bioavailability of iron in sprouts makes it an excellent preventative and treatment.
4. Heart healthy: They offer a boost of good cholesterol while possibly reducing the bad cholesterol in your body.
5. Lower blood pressure: The omega-3 fatty acids found in sprouts can benefit your cardiovascular health. They are anti-inflammatory, and their potassium content benefits blood pressure. Therefore, eating this food daily can help you reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.
6. Vitamin C: They can help strengthen weak, brittle, or thinning hair in both men and women.
7. Vitamin A and K: Both of these vitamins help your scalp and roots, thus aiding and supporting hair growth. You can enjoy these benefits with as little as a serving a day.
8. Omega acids: The omega-3’s strike again, but this time they directly affect your hair’s shine and elasticity. If you suffer from dull, lifeless hair, you should consider consuming more omega 3’s to attack the root cause (no pun intended).
9. Prevention: Eating sprouts could protect you from skin cancer because of the antioxidants that fight cancer-causing free radicals.
10. Hydrate: Vitamin B controls excess sebum. To gain this benefit, you can enjoy sprouts raw or juiced, or make a face mask with them and apply it directly to your skin.
11. Fights acne: Omega-3’s truly work wonders for the whole body, so enjoying more sprouts can also help problem skin. Whether you have acne, occasional blemishes, or psoriasis, the anti-inflammatory properties can repair your skin from the inside.
12. Youthful glow: A well-balanced diet that includes plant-based protein can do wonders for your skin. Much of this benefit is due to the regenerative cell properties, courtesy of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.
Selecting, Growing, and Storing
If you are purchasing your sprouts, check the container for signs of mold. Yellow or wilting leaves are okay, because you can trim them at home.
Store this product in the fridge, preferably in a plastic bag that you have added a few holes to; this allows them to breathe.
Growing your own sprouts is economical and offers the most health benefits, since you harvest them when you need them. Food is always freshest from your garden, and sprouts can grow in almost every location, from a pot on a balcony to your windowsill. For best results, choose organic seeds.
By the way, cooking these foods will destroy their health benefits. You can, however, sprinkle them in a bowl of soup or another warm food dish without risk. However, when consuming sprouts for health, raw is best.