Easiest way to improve your health

I like Arrowhead Mills organic rolled oats. Store in the freezer after opened.
I believe that soaking your grains is one of the easiest steps you can take to improve your health. Please don't let this overwhelm you. Try it for a week just to see how easy it is. This post will focus on oatmeal, but you can take the same steps with other grains, such as rice or quinoa. I am fairly new to soaking, so if I make any mistakes in instructions, please correct me.

Why you have to soak your grains:
(Paraphrased from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon, pg 452-454.) Oatmeal, along with every other grain contains phytic acid in the outer layer. Untreated phytic acid combines with other minerals in the intestinal tract and blocks their absorption. This can lead to serious mineral deficiencies, bone loss and irritable bowel syndrome. Soaking allows enzymes and other helpful organisms to break this down. Soaking as little as 7 hours in warm acidulated water will neutralize a large portion of phytic acid in grains. It VASTLY improves their nutritional benefits. It increases the amounts of many vitamins, especially B vitamins, which is why so many people notice an increase in energy once they start soaking.

Gluten is a protein in grains that is very difficult to digest and puts an enormous strain on the digestive system and leads to health problems such as celiac disease, allergies, mental illness, chronic indigestion and candida (yeast) overgrowth. During soaking and fermenting, gluten is partially broken down so that your body can absorb it easier. I am gluten sensitive and was thrilled to have just read this information because living gluten free is pretty expensive and mildly difficult. We usually grind out own wheat from local, organic wheat berries and we have stopped recently because we don't like the way the gluten makes us feel. I am excited to go buy some at the farmer's market today and try soaking them and see if it helps.

Soaking your oatmeal
I used to hate oatmeal, now I love it. My day is "off" if I don't eat it in the morning. Once soaked, oatmeal cooks in under 5 minutes and is the easiest and yummiest breakfast. Here are my pic by pic instructions.

I soak my oatmeal only once a week to save time...
Step 1: Pour a week's worth of oatmeal into a big bowl. 
Step 2: Cover with water.

Add 2 Tbsp - 1/4 cup (depending on amount of oats)  of kefir, buttermilk, yogurt (live cultures) or fresh lemon juice. Stir and cover.

Let sit for 8-24 hours (covered) at room temperature. The pic above is my oatmeal soaked just a little over 8 hours, overnight.
Strain and rinse.

Put back into pyrex for storage in the refrigerator until ready for use. 

Cooking your Soaked Oatmeal
Scoop out however much you need for your family. It won't expand a whole lot since it has already been soaked. Usually 1/2 cup is more than enough for me, 1 cup for me and the kids. 

I add a little milk or (non-dairy alternative), blueberries or raisins, maple syrup or honey, sea salt and cinnamon.
I cook it until it is lightly bubbling (under 5 minutes usually.)
If you don't like this oatmeal, you are crazy! :) 
I buy a big bag of the organic rolled oats for about $5 at Akins. Steel cut oats is a good option for those who like crunchier oatmeal. You can also buy them online from a variety of places. Store them in the freezer after opening because grains go rancid quickly. This makes a hot, healthy breakfast very easy and quick for your family. Kids love it too, it is so much better than the processed oatmeal!

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