Health experts also claim unsoaked nuts contain enzyme inhibitors, which can reduce the ability to absorb some of the nutrients within non-activated nuts, seeds, legumes and grains.
Queensland based holistic health and meditation teacher, Nicole King, says soaking nuts is essential for proper digestion.
“I’m nuts about nuts,” King told Better Homes and Gardens.
“Raw nuts are one of nature's finest high-protein foods and are rich in vitamins, minerals and good quality fats.”
She said in order to be truly functional as a superfood, nuts need some gentle treatment - hello, activation - to make them digestible.
The activation process may vary slightly, but generally this is the process King says can be done at home saving a lot of money at the health food store.
1) Cover and soak nuts in Himalayan crystal salt water for required hours. This starts the germination process helping to break down the phytic acid and enzyme inhibitors. The salt increases the nutrient level by producing beneficial enzymes, especially B vitamins.
2) Drain and rinse
3) Dry in the oven or a dehydrator for around 12-24 hours. This makes the nuts surprisingly light and tasty and prevents mould prolonging the shelf life.
As a general rule with nuts, King says the harder the nut, the longer you need to soak.
She recommends soaking almonds for 12 hours, cashews between three and six hours [watch them as they can go slimy] and walnuts, hazelnuts, macadamias, pecans from seven to 12hours.
King says is also possible to activate and sprout grains and beans.