Sprouts are the premature growth of a plant from a germinated seed. Every vegetable becomes a sprout at some point in its journey from seed to bloom. Only some seeds, however, form sprouts that are edible and palatable. Sprouts are nutritional powerhouses. They help reduce blood sugar levels and aid digestion. They are also considered potent cancer-fighting foods.
Types Of Sprouts
- Bean and pea sprouts, including lentils, garbanzo beans, mung beans, soybeans, black and kidney beans, and green peas.
- Vegetable or leafy sprouts, including broccoli sprouts, radish sprouts, mustard greens, and fenugreek sprouts.
- Sprouted grains, including buckwheat, brown rice, quinoa, oat, and amaranth sprouts.
- Nut and seed sprouts, including radish seed, almond, alfalfa and pumpkin seeds, sesame and sunflower seed sprouts.
- Given below is a chart defining the nutritional value of a whole cup of raw sprouted moong beans.
Nutrients Amount Calories 31.2 Protein 7.7g Carbs 6.2g Vitamin C 13.7 mg Vitamin E 0.1 mg Vitamin K 34.3 mcg Vitamin B6 0.1 mg Folate 63.4 mcg Calcium 13.5 mg Iron 0.9 mg Magnesium 21.8 mg Phosphorus 56.2 mg Potassium 155 mg Sodium 6.2 mg Zinc 0.4 mg Copper 0.2 mg Manganese 0.2 mg Selenium 0.6 mcg Omega-3 fatty acids 16.6 mg Omega-6 fatty acids 43.7 mg Dietary Fiber 1.9 g
Benefit Of Sprouts
- Helps digestion: Sprouts contain an unusually high content of living enzymes. These enzymes further help stimulate your metabolic processes and improve chemical reactions in the body, especially when it comes to digestion. Enzymes help break down food efficiently and improve nutrient absorption through the digestive tract.
- Fight illness and are anticancer: Broccoli sprouts may help protect the body against cancer by reducing the spread of cancerous cells and supporting the body to eliminate harmful substances. Shapiro adds, “broccoli sprouts are about 50 times more powerful in cancer prevention than their mature counterpart.”
- Protect Heart: Chickpea sprouts also contain phytoestrogens which improve fatty changes in the aorta – thus contributing to cardiovascular health. Broccoli sprouts also contain another antioxidant compound called glucoraphanin, which is known to improve heart health. The sulforaphane in germs promotes healthy blood vessels – which can help prevent atherosclerosis.
- Boost the immune system: In addition to helping to maintain balanced estrogen levels and reduce hangover symptoms, the natural bioactive sulforaphane compound found in germs also helps activate the body’s immune response against viruses.
- Helps to lose weight: Sprouts are one of the best foods to help with weight loss. They’re high in nutrients but have negligible calories, which means you can eat sprouts without worrying about the scale. Plus, sprouts contain a high amount of fiber which makes you feel fuller for longer.
- Improves eye sight: Vitamin A has been associated with the improvement in vision health. Due to the presence of vitamin A, sprouts also help in improving your vision and eye sight. They also have antioxidant agents to protect the cells of the eyes from free radicals.
- Helps for dandruff: Selenium in sprouts helps combat fungi that grow on the scalp of the hair and cause dandruff and other problems. It wards off dandruff and let the scalp produce natural oil that promotes healthy hair growth.
- Elasticity Of Skin: Vitamin C present in sprouts promotes a clear skin through the production of collagen. Furthermore, it provides elasticity to the skin making you look more youthful.
Here are a couple of tips you should keep in buy when you choose sprouts from a vegetable shop or when you eat them.
- Eat raw sprouts. Don’t cook them as cooking will destroy the nutrients in them.
- Wash the sprouts well before eating them.
- You can steam the sprouts as steaming will retain the nutrients. However, don’t fry or roast them.
- Sprouts are one of those foods that go best with salads. You can even buy sprouted grain flours to use in cakes, sandwiches, risottos, and much more. When you add millet to sprouts flour, you can even make your own fresh bread.