Is it Safe to Grow Your Own Sprouts?

AlfalfaThere have been quite a few news stories regarding salmonella contamination in sprouts. Food and Drug Administration has issued warnings that sprouts could be contaminated with food poisoning bacteria and advises the senior citizens, children, and those with compromised immune systems to avoid raw sprouts.

Quite scary when I first read it. But on deeper exploration, I believe that these “news stories” have been exaggerated. If you are a sprouting enthusiast, I’m sure you share the same sentiments. Even if you are not, I’m sure you have heard the other “scary news” – that health food could be bad for you? The reason cited was that you might overload your kidneys and pancreas. Basically, the other school of thought also tells you that you don’t have to take any vitamin supplements and don’t need to drink mineral water because all the nutrients you need can be easily obtained from food. However, these people seems to forget, or choose to ignore, that lots of nutrients in food are altered or totally lost these days because of GM, pesticides, loss of nutrients in soil, over-processing etc.

I would still do sprouting at home. I would still eat raw food and juice especially alfalfa. I would recommend anyone who like to grow his/her own sprouts to practice safe sprouting. Here’s two simple precautions that I follow:

1. Use certified organic seeds.
Organic certification means that the seeds were grown and handled in such a way that minimizes possible sources of contamination.To cite one example, manure used on organic fields must be composted for a long period of time. Composting reduces or get rids of pathogens in manure. Furthermore, licenced organic farmers are required to use rodent and bird proof storage for seeds meant for sprouting or eating. As far as I know, organic sprouting seeds have not been implicated in any outbreak of food poisoning.

2. Consume same day after harvesting
Best to eat the sprouts on the same day they are picked. However, if you can’t finish them all, pack them in a box and refrigerate them. Treat sprouts and foods containing sprouts just as you would any food – refrigerate until use.

Generally, some common sense precautions and good cleanliness habits will go a long way to ensuring that you will enjoy a healthy diet. This applies not just to sprouts, but also to any other raw foods that you take, for example: salads, fruits and nuts.

Check out my earlier posts why eating sprouts is good for you: 10 Great Benefits to Eating Alfalfa Sprouts, 10 Great Benefits of Eating Raw Food & Juice and Alfalfa Sprouts Protect Against Cancers & Osteoporosis.

Highly Recommended:
The Raw Secrets – The Raw Food in the Real World by Frederic Patenaude

Recent and related posts at this blog:
What About Eating Raw Foods?
Sprouts for body-building?
Eat Sprouts To Cure Eczema
Eat Sprouts to Treat Acne
10 Great Benefits to Eating Alfalfa Sprouts
10 Great Benefits of Eating Raw Food & Juice
Alfalfa Sprouts Protect Against Cancers & Osteoporosis

[tags]sprouts, sprouting, raw food, how safe to sprout at home, healthy eating, healthy living[/tags]

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