Does ‘activating’ nuts affect nutrient bioavailability?
Year Published: 2020
Kumari S, Gray AR, Webster K, Bailey K, Reid M, Kelvin KAH, Tey SL, Chisholm A, Brown RC
This study tested the popular theory that the nutrients in nuts can be "activated" by soaking them for a specified amount of time. According to the theory, soaking nuts decreases their phytate content, which helps the body better absorb various nutrients. To test this, researchers " assessed the effects of different soaking regimes on phytate and mineral concentrations of whole and chopped almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts, and walnuts. The treatments were: 1. Raw; 2. soaked for 12 h in salt solution; 3. soaked for 4 h in salt solution; 4. soaked for 12 h in water."
Key Findings: Results showed that there was no difference in phytate content across the nuts that were tested/treated. In fact, soaking the nuts seemed to decrease mineral concentrations. Authors conclude: "this research does not support claims that 'activating' nuts results in greater nutrient bioavailability."