Are Nuts And Seeds Really Raw? Do We Need To Eat Them?
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Are Nuts And Seeds Really Raw? Do We Need To Eat Them?

by Sophie
(Brighton)




Sophie's Question:I have read that most nuts are heated prior to being sold as raw in shops...and especially in America they have passed a law which means almonds labeled as raw have to be pasteurized, supposedly to reduce risk of salmonella poisoning to consumers. The label wont say pasteurized as the government said it would be too much information to give buyers, and would confuse them.

Are nuts an essential part of the diet? I know they are valuable sources of minerals and fats....but if its going to be so hard to find 'truly' raw ones id rather save my money for more beneficial food.

What's your opinion on this thanks?

Andrew's Answer: I operate with the assumption that, unless I know and trust the farmer/processor, that any nuts and seeds I find in a store will be heated or dehydrated, even if labeled as raw.

If you're eating a healthy mix of raw fruits and vegetables, there is no absolute need for raw nuts or seeds. I happen to enjoy them, and periodically include them in my diet.

In the wild, fresh nuts and seeds are only available a few times a year, although that varies across species and areas of the world. As I do with as much of my food as is practical, I prefer to eat nuts and seeds during the season when they're available and locally.

If there are no nearby farmers that can supply you, my suggestion is to do as I do and order some nuts/seeds from a reputable source several times a year, and don't eat any the rest of the time.

I talk a bit about this in my article on peanuts.

My favorite vendor of raw nuts and seeds, which has continuously impressed me with the quality of its products and its processing methods, is Living Tree Community Foods. Due to current US regulations, their almonds are not raw.

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