About sprouts and enzymes...

There's more to sprouts than just a little crunch in your salad

by Sol Azulay


xtensive research has proved be- yond a doubt that sprouts are an important part of the food of the future. Chinese nobles, 5,000 years ago, ate sprouts for healing and rejuvenation. During World War II, when the United States was concerned about a possible meat shortage, the scientific community advised the president that the consumption of germinated seeds was the best and cheapest alternative to proteins in meat. Sprouts are a complete protein. Organic minerals found in fresh juices and sprouts dramatically contributes to the maintenance of health. Untreated natural sprouts have power to build nerves, tissue, bones and blood.

Commercially available supplements synthetically prepared contain no "life force," and therefore are not really natural. Sprouts are rich in vitamins, minerals, proteins and natural enzymes, combined exactly as God intended for us to consume. The "magic" of sprouts is that they are easily grown as a 100 percent organic food. Only clean water and 4 days are needed to get a fully grown, crispy, tasty vegetable. Germination of sprouts does not require soil, pesticides or fungicides what a contribution to our natural environment!

Natural foods contain enzymes, minerals, amino acids and others important elements. Many researchers believe that natural vitamin complexes contain valuable food components not found in synthetic vitamins. Experiments confirm that processed foods lead to degenerative diseases and breakdown in reproductive capacity by the third generation.

The increase of vitamin content in sprouts during the sprouting period is tremendous. A clear increase in vitamin content has been measured in numerous experiments that compared sprouts to the unsprouted seed. Germinated seeds and grain showed an increase in vitamins, minerals, proteins and enzymes of 25 to 4,000 percent!


Looking at enzymes


 Digestive enzymes help the digestive process to assimilate proteins, carbohydrates and fat. In 1930, only 80 enzymes have been identified; in 1970, more than 1,300 enzymes were known. By now, over 4,000 have been found - and counting.

If we do not get enzymes with our daily food to aid our digestion, our body's digestive enzymes will carry the complete load, depleting the limited resources. Enzymes have a vital activity factor that is exhaustible, and our capacity to make enzymes is limited.

It appears that the safest answer is to sprout all your intake of seeds and grains. In this process the inhibitors are neutralized and life process commences with enzymes that are alive and active.

There are more reasons why sprouts are an excellent addition to your present diet. Sprouts are pure, natural, organic and therefore free from artificial toxin. Sprouts are not a culinary decoration they are real life food!

I started developing propagation technologies for other purposes 15 years ago when I owned a successful cut flower greenhouse business. Since then, I have had a dream of facilitating the consumption of seeds, grain and natural juices by developing simple automatic appliances. Seeking the latest scientific information on the enzymes, I interviewed Warren Peary and William Peavy, Ph.D. in their warm Albuquerque home. Dr. Peavy received his M.A. in horticulture science from the University of California and a Ph.D. from Kansas State University. He was a columnist for the El Paso times, has written over one hundred published articles and a few books.

Q: I would like to present the interesting questions I have been recently asked by our readers. Gerontologists [Scientists who study aging] say that 120 years could be the average human life span versus 75 right now. How is it possible for anyone to live in good health anywhere near that length of time?

A: A good deal of research indicates that a large part of the answer lies in eating high-enzyme foods every day. Most people don't know what high-enzyme foods are.

Q: Can't the enzymes produced by our body carry this function effectively?

A: All of us have a limited capacity to produce enzymes. Like the engine of the car that has a limited capacity to produce horsepower. And this capacity declines with age. It is this capacity which we are born with, that determines our maximum potential life span. Some are born with a greater potential life span, and others less. In any case, as we age, in general, our body is able to produce less and less enzymes. It is this general decline in enzyme activity in our body that is a fundamental cause of aging. When enzyme activity gets too low, the process of death occurs.

Q: How exactly do enzymes affect our aging process?

A: One of the first indication that enzyme activity is waning in your body is a reduction in the efficiency of your digestive system. Virtually all of us have a rapid deterioration in the efficiency of our digestive system as we grow older due to a decrease of digestive enzymes. So serious is this that around two-thirds of all hospitalizations are for problems of the digestive system. Medicines for the digestive system are the number one selling class of drugs. As we age, we lose the ability to produce adequate hydrochloric acid while 35 percent of people over 65 produce none at all. While the digestive system is deteriorating, the enzyme activity throughout the rest of your body is also in decline. This decline is a fundamental cause of aging as well as many of the diseases associated with aging.

Q: Is there anything we can do that will slow down this decline in enzyme activity and even maximize its activity in our body?

A: The answer is YES! One of the big reasons why we lose the ability to make digestive and other enzymes at such an early age (relative to our maximum life spans) is because we force our bodies to produce excessively concentrated digestive enzymes all our life. This is because we get little or no enzymes from our food. Why is this? Because we cook virtually everything we eat and cooking destroys enzymes, (enzyme destruction begins at 118 degrees Fahrenheit). All raw foods contain the enzymes needed for the digestion of their own nutrients. These include the proteolytic, amylolytic, and lipolytic enzymes our body works so hard to produce. Man is the only animal that cooks virtually everything he eats. All animals in the wild eat everything raw and get the enzymes in the food they need and are free of degenerative diseases such as heart disease and cancer. This is actually the way nature intended for us to eat all our food. Biologically, we are animals and have the same requirements for enzymes.

Q: What are the effects on our bodies of not getting enough enzymes in our diets?

A: The work of researchers such as Dr. Edward Howell has shown that we literally wear-out our enzyme-making machinery by forcing our body to produce such a concentrated flow of digestive enzymes all of our life. By squandering our enzyme-making capacity on digestive enzymes, our body has less capacity or energy to create and preserve the thousands of other enzymes in our body. As a consequence, enzyme activity throughout your entire body declines rapidly. The aging process accelerates at a much faster rate and younger age than it should.

Q: How do you get a high enzyme diet? Are you saying we have to eat all raw food?

A: Theoretically, it is what our body is made for and it might be optimal but virtually none of us is going to do it. Instead, there is a much easier way to get high amount of enzymes in your diet while still enjoying your cooked food. This is by eating a food that has an exceptionally high enzyme content. That food is germinated or sprouted seeds such as grains and beans. Sprouted seeds are germinated over a three to five day span when enzyme activity in the seed reaches a maximum and the sprout is still small. After the 5th day, enzyme content drops off markedly as the sprout grows longer and longer. Sprouts are grown long, like vegetables, and have very little enzymes compared to sprouted seeds. This is a very important distinction to make. People who grow sprouts are often not aware of this because the information is hidden in arcane journals on plant biochemistry. Harvesting sprouts in their first 4 - 5 days is crucial.

Q: What about vegetable and fruits?

A: While raw vegetables and fruits have enzymes, they are low in concentration compared to sprouted seeds. The differences in enzyme concentration are enormous.

Q: How big?

A: There is 10 to 100 times more enzymes in sprouted seeds than in vegetables or fruits depending on the enzyme and the seed that is being sprouted. There is no food on the planet higher in enzymes than sprouted seeds. They are also a great source of vitamins C, carotenoid A, B vitamins, and minerals.

Q: Can you conclude this for me?

A: Sprouted seeds should be made an integral part of your diet to spare digestive enzymes, maximize enzyme activity, and slow the aging process. They can be grown on your kitchen counter. They are the fountain of youth. In our new book Super Nutrition Gardening we explain sprouting seeds in chapter 3. You also need good seeds such as certified organic seeds.

Q: According to your extensive research, what seeds are highest in enzymes?

A: The 4 seeds we most highly recommend are rye, wheat, mung bean, and lentils. Alfalfa is fine as well.

Sol Azulay is an inventor and entrepreneur. He has studied business management, horticulture and presently working on his Ph.D. in nutrition. Sol is also a photographer, pilot, member of a few international health associations and member of the American Naturopathic Medical Association. Presently Sol acts as the president of Seed & Grain Technologies, a company dedicated to research and development of a means to ease and promote the consumption of natural food