View Full Version : Nuts and seeds
10-31-2005, 05:56 PM
What kinds of nuts and seeds do I need to get? Is trader joes a good place to get them?
10-31-2005, 06:00 PM
Most of us get:
I might have forgotten some, but those are the basics. The basic/basics are pretty much almonds, walnuts, cashews, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds and flax seeds. Pecans and mac nuts are kinda pricey and are generally used when a recipe calls for them, though some buy them just to eat.
Trader Joe's is fine, but if you can find some place that sells them in bulk, it's cheaper.
10-31-2005, 06:10 PM
Depends on what you are looking for and can afford. If you are looking for Organic AND Raw, T.J.'s has some. Their almonds are not raw last time I checked there.
10-31-2005, 06:16 PM
Trader Joe's has raw sunflower, pecans and walnuts. There almonds are "almost raw" not sure what that means but that's what the bags says.
In terms of nuts, sunflower seeds are the most economical. I use sunflower seeds, almonds and pine nuts the most often! A good start would be to purchase almonds and sunflower and expand from there. A lot of the nuts for Allissa's recipes are interchangeable (i.e. macadamian nuts for walnuts etc etc) so just experiment and see what you like!
Rawkinlocs covered the bases nicely. I would just add that it is wise to read up just a little on the nutritional differences between the various nuts and seeds, since this allows you to fit them into your diet more effectively. Some are higher in minerals than others (e.g. pumpkin seeds are high in zinc, sesame are high in calcium etc.), and some are higher in Omega 3 oils than they are in Omega 6 oils, with others being highest in saturated oils etc. Walnuts are reknowned for being good for the cardiovascular system; pumpkin seeds for the prostate. Note that cashes are, in fact, a member of the legume family (as are peanuts, if I'm not mistaken), but are nonetheless generally accepted under the classification of nuts.
Generally , all the various nuts and seeds have some properties beneficial to health but do ensure you buy unsalted un roasted nuts if you wish to avoid consuming rancid oils etc.
It is wise, although not absolutely critical, to soak nuts and seeds before consumption since they are characteristically high in phytic acid ('plant acid') and enzyme inhibitors. Soaking them breaks down most of the phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors, making them easier to digest and less of a burden on the body. Note that nuts and seeds are generally considered to be acid-forming (note that this is a separate issue from their inherent phytic acid content). Therefore, it is wise to consume nuts and seeds with sensible restraint, because:
~Too much fat intake is not considered to be a particulary healthy approach to obtaining sufficient calories on a raw diet. Some raw foodists (e.g. Dr Doug Graham) claim excessive fat intake is very common amongst the raw-foodist community and may contribute to, or yield a greater propensity to, diabetes and/or candida.
~Too great a nut and seed intake may hinder attempts to alkalinize the body (bring the body's pH into a very slightly akaline state, whereby minerals, for example, are not leeched from the body in order to neutralize excessive acidity in the blood).
DO eat nuts and seeds - they're an extremely healthy addition to a raw diet - but consume them in sensible moderation, bearing in mind not only their high fat content but also (unsurprisingly) their very high caloric content.
Try to eat a good variety rather than focusing upon just one or two (it is very common to fixate on one's favourite nuts and seeds! ;)), since they each have different characteristics.
Try to soak most of your nuts and seeds but don't get hung up on this - if you find yourself eating a lot of unsoaked nuts and seeds that's perfectly ok in the short term.
P.S. if you want to learn about the oils then Udo Erasmus's 'Fats That Heal, Fats That Kill' is a simply superb resource and far more interesting than it's stated objective implies.
if you want to learn about mineral content of seeds and nuts then the book Diet By Design (http://www.foodnsport.com/aabox8/catalog/product_info.php?cPath=18_19&products_id=66) is pretty good, but I'm sure others here will be able to suggest other books which deal with mineral content of nuts and seeds in even greater detail.
Note that there are also various phytonutrients, that often evade discussion, which offer health benefits, too. A prime example of this is provided in Udo's book, where his discussion on flaxseed makes for truly elightening reading.
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