Sprouting seeds and beans increases their vitamin levels, according to David B. Fankhauser, Ph.D. at the University of Cleveland Claremont College. Sprouted lentil beans contain vitamins A, B, C and E, all of which are important to your overall health. Sprouting lentil seeds is not difficult to do at home, but make sure your purchase seeds meant for sprouting. Dried lentils that you find in the rice and bean aisle at the supermarket will not work. One cup of sprouted lentil seed sprouts are a healthy and tasty addition to sandwiches, soups, stews and salads.
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Sprouted lentils are naturally low in calories and, as opposed to other sources of protein like meat and poultry, they have no fat, saturated or otherwise. A 1-cup serving of sprouted lentils has only 82 calories, making them a wise choice for people who are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight.
The vitamin C in sprouted lentils is a powerful antioxidant, which helps combat the signs of aging and aids in the prevention certain cancers. It also helps manufacture the protein collagen, which is necessary to the production of blood vessels, cartilage, ligaments, skin and tendons as well as for the repair and maintenance of your teeth and bones. Vitamin C is also crucial to wound healing and supports your immune system. Each cup of sprouted lentils contains 14 percent of the daily value for this vitamin.
Folate and Potassium
A 1 cup serving of sprouted lentils contains 77 g of folate, a B vitamin, which is crucial to iron production and in making new cells. Sprouted lentils are also packed with 248 mg of potassium, which is necessary to muscle function, as well as being crucial to the healthy functioning of your heart.
Protein and Carbohydrates
Sprouted lentils are very high in protein, though they are missing the amino acid methionone and must be combined with eggs, dairy or nuts to be a complete protein. Protein is important as far as building and maintaining your muscles. One cup of lentils contains 17 g of carbohydrates, but because sprouted lentils have a low glycemic index, they are not “bad” carbs. Eating sprouted lentils with brown rice gives you a complete protein and carbohydrates for energy without causing an insulin spike and resulting drop in blood sugar that causes hunger pangs.
REFERENCES & RESOURCES
- University of Cincinnati Clermont College; Sprouting Seeds; David B. Fankhauser, Ph.D.; December 2002.
- North Carolina State University; Bean Sprouts and Other Vegetable Seed Sprouts; Larry Bass and Douglas C. Sanders; March 1999
- University of Rochester Medical Center; Nutrition Facts; Sprouted Lentils
- My Fitness Pal: Calories in Sprouted Lentils
- University of Wisconsin Extension; Growing Edible Sprouts at Home; H.C. Harrison