As I have become more aware of the foods I eat, and the preparation involved to eat & live well, I cringe at the thought of what I used to consider food! I am thankful that I was privileged enough to live with a roof over my head, a fab mamma to take care of me, and a beautiful family to fill me with love!
Remember the days of eating Jiffy peanut butter with mom’s PB&J? Or if you were like me, eating Jiffy by the tablespoons in consecutive sequence! I adopted this “great” habit from my sweet grandma, Lila. To this day, she still does this!
There are so many of us that LOVE to eat all different types of nut butters, or anything that has to do with nuts. “Fancy” nuts, cajun, garlic, even in their simplest form, peanuts in the shell!
Gratefully enough, I’ve come to realize that nuts are actually detrimental to your health, impairing digestion!
Nuts are filled with what are called, Mycotoxins.
You may be telling yourself, “Ooohhh, tell me more about these so called mycotoxins!”
Well, this is exactly why I’m here!
So, what are mycotoxins?
Mycotoxins are literally toxins produced from fungi that have grown on crops, tree nuts, and can be found in other environmental surroundings, like the air we breathe. They are extremely toxic & can create disease in humans and animals. The different types of mycotoxins are: Aflatoxin, Ochratoxin, Trichothecene, & Zearalenone. You don’t really need to know their scientific names, but just in case you’d like to know!
How are they harmful?
When you eat foods that are loaded with mycotoxins, they make their way to the digestive system & sit there for your entire lifetime! Once they’re ingested, they can leach through the digestive system and can be absorbed through the circulatory process. Once the mycotoxin is absorbed, they can become toxic to the host, which is YOU! This later leads to inflammatory concerns, lack of digestion, and other relating issues.
Where are they found?
Mycotoxins are found mostly in nuts! Raw nuts are a fantastic snack. Unfortunately, many of them have a large amount of mycotoxins (fungal poisons). They can be a huge leading cause to many health conditions! Beware of choosing to purchase raw nut butters from the grocery store. Even though they’re raw, they can still be harmful to you. All nuts must be properly soaked and dehydrated if you want to eat them! Other mycotoxic rich foods include:
- Brazil Nuts
- Majority of grains
- Field Crops (Wheat, Wheat, Coffee, Barley, Rye, Sorghum, Cotton Seed)
- Pseudograins (Quinoa, Amaranth, Buckwheat)
Mycotoxins aren’t only in the foods listed above, they’re also in the air, carpet, & walls. However, this blog post is specifically for the mycotoxins that are found in the foods we eat.
Do you need to forever refrain from eating nuts? Can you “kill” mycotoxins?
Heck no! Its quite simple, actually! I have always been a lover of tree nuts, and love the amount of nutrition they have to offer. Nuts & seeds are perfect options for fat, protein, & minerals. If you choose to eat tree nuts or seeds, there is a proper way to prepare them.
Mycotoxins aren’t actually alive like mold spores. So when we talk about “killing mycotoxins,” or getting rid of them, it really means breaking down mycotoxins and their toxicity so they are no longer dangerous to humans. This can easily be done by soaking & dehydrating the nut.
Back when I was in college, I used to roam the local Safeway and health food stores’ bulk section. My favorite part of grocery shopping? Putting my hand under the nut dispenser! Nothing like a great handful of mycotoxins from raw cashews, almonds, or pecans to hold of your starving college hunger, right?
Times have changed!
How can you eat nuts & seeds that are free from harmful mycotoxins?
Soak Your Nuts! And Seeds.
Soaking your nuts anywhere from 20 minutes – 2 hrs is an ideal time frame. Many people soak their nuts and seeds over night. However, using the artistic science of QRA, 20 minutes – 2 hours max seems to do the job perfectly!
In order to prevent mold from recreating its life cycle, you must dehydrate the nut or seed completely!
Dehydrating nuts or seeds at 115°- 125° for 8-10 hour works perfectly! This step is very important! Dehydrating these beauties prevents eliminates & prevents the future growth of fungi & mold!
At this point, while the nut is still moist from soaking and rinsing, you can add pink salt, or any other spices you may want to flavor your nuts or seeds with. Adding pink salt gives the nuts an amazing roasted flavor. You can absolutely taste the difference! In a later blog, I’ll teach you how to make a fermented nut crust for raw deserts.
Once you’ve dehydrated your nuts or seeds, you can pack them into your mason jars for your week supply of protein & fat rich snacks! These beauties are always the perfect addition to any salad. They’re just as fantastic when you eat them on their own by the handful!
Mason jars are the best storing container. Make sure to seal your lid tightly to eliminate any oxidation. Eating stale nuts & seeds isn’t so pleasurable to the palate!
Keep your eyes bright for other recipes featuring properly prepared nuts & seeds!