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Broccoli Sprouts - Why They're Good for You and How to Grow Them

Posted by Matt Carruesco on

Broccoli sprouts have become increasingly popular as an addition to a morning smoothie in the health and wellness community. The craze stems from a key molecule, glucoraphanin, the precursor to sulforaphane.

Sulforaphane has become increasingly popular for its ability to make a positively impact on certain forms of cancers, H. Pilori in the gut, Alzheimer's, Autism, and Parkinson's Disease. Although, sulforaphane itself actually is not the reason for all of these positive health effect. In short, for all you geeks out there, when sulforaphane enters the cell, it induces a hormetic response triggering the transcription of genes for protective enzymes, essentially gearing our cells up to protect us from cellular damage.

Going deeper, it’s important to mention Nrf2. A pathway which protects against oxidation caused by inflammation and a well-known mechanism that is “geared up” in the presence of Sulforaphane.

Nrf2 is activated by consuming a myriad of vegetables, primarily from the Brassicaceae family, which includes all crucifers like kale, broccoli, and cabbage. Studies show that folks who eat a higher level of cruciferous vegetables have lower levels of certain cancers, namely lung and breast cancer.

It is important to note:

  1. The Younger the Better - Earlier stages of broccoli are richer in sulforaphane. Seeds having the highest concentration and adult broccoli plants containing the least amount. Since the seeds can often be intensely bitter, sprouts are a great way to still get elevated levels of Sulforaphane, while not completely overpowering the flavor of your smoothie.
  2. Eat it Raw - Cooking broccoli, kale and even broccoli sprouts makes the sulforaphane considerably less bioavailable. Smoothies and salads are the best vehicles for consuming these plants raw.

5 Easy Steps to Grow Broccoli Sprouts

Broccoli Sprouts are incredibly easy to grow at home, super high in sulforaphane, and can be cultivated with very little time and cost. Below are the steps to grow your own broccoli sprouts:

I bought a few of these sprouting lids for mason jars on Amazon that are perfect for easily washing and straining the sprouts. I run four jars at a time, which yields a couple weeks worth of sprouts for daily smoothies for two people. I bought these cheap, organic, non-GMO seeds and a couple sprouting stands pictured below. Using a small dish or bowl in place of stands is another option to set the jars upside down, however, I prefer the stands, which make the process easier. 

Step 1

Add 3 Tablespoons of broccoli sprouts seeds to each jar and cover with the sprouting screens. Fill the jars with a couple inches of water and swish them around a bit. Set in a dark, cool place for 12 Hours. I put mine under the kitchen sink.

Step 2

After 12 hours, dump out the water, wash the seeds, dump out the water again, and place the jar upside down in a dark cool place (this is where the sprouting stands come in handy). It is important to leave them upside down. When the seeds/sprouts sit in water, they can easily mold which can be a BIG problem. I love these stands from Amazon. 

Step 3

Once every morning and once every evening (I do this when I make coffee in the morning and when I do dishes at night) pull out the jars, fill them with water to rinse the seeds/sprouts and then dump out all of the water. Repeat this step for 6-10 days or until the jar is full of baby broccoli sprouts.

 

Step 4

Once the sprouts grew enough to fill the jar pull them out of the cabinet and let them sit in the sun for a day to “color up” from their yellow color to green. There is no exact answer for when to pull them out, just look for the majority of seeds to be sprouted. The earlier you pull them, the more bitter they will be, but the more Sulforaphane they will contain! I always err on the side of early.

 

Step 5

Remove broccoli sprouts from the jars and place in a large bag in the freezer. This way they will be preserved for a while and are easy to snag a handful and toss in a smoothie.

Enjoy,

Matt

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    No-Bake Keto Chocolate Peanut Butter Energy Balls

    Posted by Kelsey Anderson on

    No oven required - SUPER simple recipe for keto friendly energy balls. If you are on a ketogenic or low-carb diet, these energy balls will fit right in.  They are packed with fats, some exogenous ketones, nutrient-dense seeds, and they are extremely low carb. I love these for a little afternoon pick-me-up as a snack or on my way to train.

    These treats will provide a quick a boost of energy and will hold you over until your next meal. If you add the dairy-free, sugar-free chocolate chips and coconut flakes (like I always do) they can easily be a healthy dessert (You can also play around with dried fruits instead of the chocolate chips to add a little sweetness)! Hope you enjoy these tasty morsels!

    No-Bake Keto Chocolate Peanut Butter Energy Balls (Yields: 15 balls)

    Ingredients:

    2 Scoops Chocolate Keto Powder (make this a link to the store)
    1 Cup Almonds
    1 Cup Cashews
    ¼ Cup Hemp Seeds
    ¼ Cup Chia Seeds
    1 Cup Natural Organic Peanut Butter
    ⅛ Cup Coconut oil
    ¼ Cup Dairy-free, Sugar-free Chocolate Chips (Optional)
    Coconut Flakes (for topping, optional)

    Directions:

    1. Combine Almonds and Cashews in food processor or blender and blend until they are chopped into a fine to medium consistency.
    2. Mix all ingredients together in large bowl.
    3. Chill for 10-15 minutes to let the mixture set.
    4. Once chilled, roll into small balls and place on a baking sheet or plate. (Option to roll in coconut flakes for more flavor and prettier presentation!)
    5. Store in refrigerator or freezer.
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    Kelsey's Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding (GF,DF,vegan)

    Posted by Kelsey Anderson on

    Who says you can’t have pudding for breakfast?! If you’re like me, keeping it clean can be tough when you have a sweet tooth. This Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding recipe is one of my favorites; it can be breakfast, a midday snack or a dessert, AND it is packed with the “superfood” chia seeds!

    These little wonders come from the plant, Salvia hispanica, which grows in southern Mexico. The ancient Mayans and Aztecs would eat chia seeds for extra energy and for other medicinal purposes (we are a little late to the chia seed game!). Chia seeds are a HUGE source of fiber and Omega-3 fatty acids (the “healthy” fats).  

    For those of you who focus on a healthy gut, these seeds are for you! Chia seeds help with digestion and regulation of the digestive system, can decrease inflammation and insulin resistance, and they are filling and give you an energy boost!

    In this recipe, I included my VitalFit Planted Vanilla Protein and cacao powder to add a little extra flavor (I have also made the pudding with my 3fuel Chocolate Protein powder to make a chocolatey dessert!). This recipe is easy, packed with health benefits, and hits the spot when you want something sweet, enjoy!


    Vanilla Chia Seed Pudding - Serves: 2-3 

    Ingredients:

    8 Tablespoons of chia seeds
    2 Cups Unsweetened Almond Milk (or your choice of liquid based on dietary preferences)
    ½ teaspoon Vanilla extract
    1 Scoop of Vitalfit Planted Vanilla Protein
    1 teaspoon Cacao powder (optional)
    Strawberries (for topping)
    Blueberries (for topping)

      Instructions:

      1. Combine ingredients (except for the fruit) and mix well.
      2. Place mixture into the refrigerator to let the chia seeds absorb the liquid. The mixture only needs about 30 minutes to thicken up but you can leave the mixture in the refrigerator for up to two weeks!
      3. Stir the mixture occasionally to avoid clumping. Depending on the type of liquid and how thick you like your pudding you may have to play around with the chia seed to liquid ratio.
      4. This recipe makes a pretty thick consistency. Once you have reached your desired thickness, top it with some fruit, granola, or a drizzle of honey for more sweetness.

      Enjoy!

      - Kelsey Anderson

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      Time to Kick the Ibuprofen..

      Posted by Primal Goods Co. Team on

      Turns out that taking OTC anti-inflammatory drugs can be crushing those hard earned gains. A recent study suggests the drugs like ibuprofen can inhibit muscle growth in young, healthy adults who engage in strength training. Exploring other options such as Turmeric or Tart Cherries to help combat inflammation.
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      Drink Coffee. Live Longer

      Posted by Primal Goods Co. Team on

      Rise and Grind! A study of over 20,000 participants says that making coffee a regular part of your diet may be associated with a lower risk of death.
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