MoonDragon's Nutrition Information
FOOD & NUTRIENT GUIDE: VEGETABLES
Scientific Name: Medicago sativa
Nutrition Basics: Alfalfa Herbal Information & Products
HEALTH BENEFITS OF SPROUTS
Sprouts have long been famous as "health food" but recent research shows that in addition to being a superb source of nutrients, they also have important curative ability. Sprouts like alfalfa, radish, broccoli, clover and soybean contain concentrated amounts of phytochemicals (plant compounds) that can protect us against disease.
Studies on canavanine, an amino acid analog in alfalfa, has demonstrated benefit for pancreatic, colon and leukemia cancers. Plant estrogens are also abundant in sprouts. They increase bone formation and density and prevent bone breakdown or osteoporosis. They are also helpful in controlling hot flashes, menopause, PMS and fibrocystic breasts tumors.
Alfalfa sprouts are one of our finest food sources of another compound, saponins. Saponins lower the bad cholesterol and fat but not the good HDL fats. Animal studies prove their benefit in arteriosclerosis and cardiovascular disease. Saponins also stimulate the immune system by increasing the activity of natural killer cells such as T-lymphocytes and interferon. The saponin content of alfalfa sprouts multiplies 450 percent over that of the unsprouted seed.
Sprouts also contain an abundance of highly active antioxidants that prevent DNA destruction and protect us from the ongoing effects of aging. It would not be inconceivable to find a fountain of youth here, after all, sprouts represent the miracle of birth.
Alfalfa sprouts are great on salads, in sandwiches (in place of lettuce) and as a topping on many dishes (see recipes below).
Alfalfa seed used for sprouting as well as the kitchen tools and other types of sprouting seeds can be purchased through Mountain Rose Herbs:
NUTRIENT GUIDE: ALFALFA SPROUTS
Courtesy of Rick Hall, About.com Nutrition Guide nutrition.about.com.
NUTRIENT UNITS 1 cup
PROXIMATES Water g 30.076 Energy kcal 9.570 Energy kj 39.930 Protein g 1.317 Total lipid (fat) g 0.228 Carbohydrate, by difference g 1.247 Fiber, total dietary g 0.825 Ash g 0.132 MINERALS Calcium, Ca mg 10.560 Iron, Fe mg 0.317 Magnesium, Mg mg 8.910 Phosphorus, P mg 23.100 Potassium, K mg 26.070 Sodium, Na mg 1.980 Zinc, Zn mg 0.304 Copper, Cu mg 0.052 Manganese, Mn mg 0.062 Selenium, Se mcg 0.198 VITAMINS Vitamin C, ascorbic acid mg 2.706 Thiamin mg 0.025 Riboflavin - B-2 mg 0.042 Niacin - B-3 mg 0.159 Pantothenic Acid - B-5 mg 0.186 Vitamin B-6 mg 0.011 Folate - B-9 mcg 11.880 Vitamin B-12 mcg 0.000 Vitamin A, IU IU 51.150 Vitamin A, RE mcg_RE 5.280 Vitamin E mg_ATE 0.007 LIPIDS Fatty Acids, Saturated g 0.023 4:0 Butyric g 0.000 6:0 Caproic g 0.000 8:0 Caprylic g 0.000 10:0 Capric g 0.000 12:0 Lauric g 0.000 14:0 Myristic g 0.001 16:0 Palmitic g 0.019 18:0 Stearic g 0.003 Fatty Acids, Monounsaturated g 0.018 16:1 Palmitol g 0.000 18:1 Oleic g 0.018 20:1 Eicosen g 0.000 22:1 Erucic g 0.000 Fatty Acids, Polyunsaturated g 0.135 18:2 Linoleic g 0.077 18:3 Linolenic g 0.058 18:4 Stearidon g 0.000 20:4 Arachidon g 0.000 20:5 EPA g 0.000 22:5 DPA g 0.000 22:6 DHA g 0.000 Cholesterol mg 0.000 AMINO ACIDS Threonine g 0.044 Isoleucine g 0.047 Leucine g 0.088 Lysine g 0.071 Valine g 0.048
USDA Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 12 (March 1998)
GROWING YOUR OWN ALFALFA SPROUTS
- Alfalfa seeds
- Clear glass quart jar
- Piece of clean pantyhose or cheesecloth
- Rubber band
- Water and Sink
- Closet or cupboard that will not be opened too much
- A windowsill or tabletop area near a window that gets plenty of sunlight
HERE IS WHAT TO DO TO GROW YOUR OWN ALFALFA SPROUTS:
Making your own alfalfa sprouts are inexpensive, easy and nutritious. A pound of organic seeds will last for a long time since you only use a tablespoon of seeds at a time when you make a quart jar full of alfalfa sprouts. When you grow them yourself, you know that they are fresh and untreated with chemicals and preservatives, which sometimes occurs when you purchase them from a store already sprouted.
1. With your scissors, cut a piece of pantyhose or cheesecloth that you can put on the top of your quart jar. It needs to be big enough to drape over the edge at least an inch or so.
2. Measure and put a tablespoon of alfalfa seeds into your quart jar.
3. Put some water in the jar so that the seeds are completely covered up.
4. Put the cheesecloth or piece of panty hose on the top of the jar. Keep it in place by stretching a rubber band around the outer edge of the jar.
5. Put the jar somewhere where it will not get disturbed. Let the seeds soak overnight.
6. The next day, take the jar to a sink and turn it upside down to drain out the water. To start growing, the seeds need to be damp but not totally wet.
7. Put the jar in a cupboard or closet that will be kept dark for four days.
8. Every day, take the jar out three times a day (morning, afternoon and evening). Take it to the sink and put in some cool water. Rinse the alfalfa seeds by moving the jar around a little in a swishing and rotating manner. Each time be sure to drain the rinsing water so the seeds are just damp - not soaking wet!
9. Check out the little seeds. They should be very white and you should see little sprouts growing! In 2 or 3 days, the sprouts will get to be several inches tall.
10. On the 4th day, after you rinse them and drain off the excess water, put the jar on a windowsill or tabletop where it is going to get plenty of sunlight. Watch what happens! The sprouts will turn green.
I like to rotate the jar to coat the inside with the sprouting seeds as they are growing, spreading them out as evenly as possible. When they are damp, they will cling to the glass, giving the sprouts more room to grow. Please note: most of the sprouts will turn green if you do not overcrowd them, which is why it is important to keep the volume of seed down to 1 to 2 tablespoons at the most for a quart jar. When you rinse them, some of the sprouts may lose their seed hulls. These can be rinsed off and float away with the rinse water.
When you see them getting green (see jar above), you can eat them. Make a garden or tossed salad and put your sprouts on top, Try making a cold sandwich of your choice. I like a whole grain bread such as oat, whole wheat, 12 grain for my sandwich with a touch of mayonnaise, preferably home made, fresh tomato slices, and thinly sliced onion with a handful of my alfalfa sprouts. Sometimes I make a sprout and cucumber sandwich with a bit of homemade mayonnaise. Whatever I find to put with my sprouts, they are fresh and very flavorful. Alfalfa sprouts can be mixed with other seeds to add a variety of flavor, such as clover, radish, and other seed options.
A sprout is the very beginning growth of a seed when it is just starting to begin the process of becoming a plant. Instead of buying sprouts at a grocery store or produce market, which are often treated with preservatives, you can grow your own! Sprouts are very good for you! Fun to make (a great project for the kids) and inexpensive.
What happened when the sprouts turned green? They were getting sunlight. When green plants get sunlight, the process of photosynthesis happens. They use the energy of sunlight to fuel their own growth. Sprouts could not keep growing with just the energy stored in seeds for more than a few days.
ALFALFA SPROUT USE SUGGESTIONS
You are only limited by your imagination when it comes to using alfalfa sprouts. They are a great substitute to using lettuce and they contain many more valuable nutrients than lettuce (especially iceberg lettuce). Be creative and enjoy!
ALFALFA VEGGIE WRAP
Provel, alfalfa sprouts, olives, tomatoes, bell peppers, onions & pickles with Ranch dressing.
ALFALFA SIRLOIN STEAK WRAP
Sirloin steak with Provel, alfalfa sprouts, olives, tomatoes, bell peppers, onions & pickles with Ranch dressing.
ALFALFA BACON WRAP
Bacon, alfalfa sprouts, tomatoes, & Mayo.
ALFALFA CROISSANT SANDWICH
3 slices cooked bacon
1/4 teaspoon horseradish
1 teaspoon mayonnaise
1 teaspoon relish
dash of paprika
Crumble bacon and mix with remaining ingredients. Spread the mixture on an open croissant. Then add in layers:
cucumber, thinly sliced
green onions, chopped
ALFALFA GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICH
Sprout up your grilled cheese sandwich by adding sliced tomatoes, radish sprouts, buckwheat sprouts and a sprinkle of sunflower seeds sprouts.
ALFALFA HUMMUS SANDWICH
2 slices whole grain bread (whole wheat, oat, 12 grain)
6 tablespoons prepared hummus
3 to 4 slices of each: tomato, sweet pepper, red onion rings, and cucumber
Spread hummus on bread. Arrange sliced vegetables on top. Top with alfalfa sprouts. Put both slices of bread together with ingredients inside.
ALFALFA TURKEY SANDWICH
This turkey sandwich features fresh tomatoes, alfalfa sprouts and the crisp texture of radishes.
1/4 cup mayonnaise
4 kaiser rolls, cut in half
1/2 cup sliced radishes
12 (about 2-1/4 x 1-inch) slices American cheddar cheese
8 ounces thinly sliced turkey breast
8 slices tomato
1 cup alfalfa sprouts
Spread mayonnaise on top and bottom halves of kaiser rolls.
To assemble each sandwich, layer each bottom roll half with 1/4 of radishes, 1/4 of turkey, 3 slices cheese, 2 slices tomato, 1/4 cup sprouts and top half of roll.
Makes 4 sandwiches.
Nutrition Facts (1 sandwich):
Fat: 27 g
Cholesterol: 95 mg
Sodium: 1040 mg
Carbohydrates: 33 g
Dietary Fiber: 0 g
Protein: 32 g
ALFALFA SPROUT OMELET
3/4 cup of alfalfa sprouts
1 teaspoon diced bell pepper
1 teaspoon diced green onion
2/3 cup sliced mushrooms
1/4 cup diced water chestnuts
1/4 cup milk
1 to 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
salt and pepper to taste
In an omelet pan, sauté vegetables and bean sprouts in oil for 3 - 5 minutes. Remove vegetables and place on a warm plate. Whip together the eggs, milk and seasoning. Pour egg mixture into the omelet pan and cook on both sides. Place vegetables in center and fold omelet over.
If using Alfalfa sprouts, sauté the vegetables 1 to 3 minutes before adding the alfalfa sprouts so that they cook for only 2 minutes. Cooking alfalfa sprouts changes their taste in an interesting way. (Chinese bean sprouts (mung beans) can be substituted for alfalfa sprouts, if desired).
Top of Page
Return To Vegetable Index
NOTE: Bulk herbs are available through Mountain Rose Herbs and Nutritional Supplements are available through Herbal Remedies. To find supplements listed and not listed above, click on the links below:
MoonDragon's Nutrition Therapy: Preparing Produce for Juicing
MoonDragon's Nutritional Recipe Index
MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Nutrition Basics Index
MoonDragon's Nutritional Therapy Index
MoonDragon's Nutritional Analysis Index
MoonDragon's Nutritional Diet Index
MoonDragon's Nutrition Information Index
AROMATHERAPY: ESSENTIAL OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Allspice Leaf Oil Angelica Oil Anise Oil Baobab Oil Basil Oil Bay Laurel Oil Bay Oil Benzoin Oil Bergamot Oil Black Pepper Oil Chamomile (German) Oil Cajuput Oil Calamus Oil Camphor (White) Oil Caraway Oil Cardamom Oil Carrot Seed Oil Catnip Oil Cedarwood Oil Chamomile Oil Cinnamon Oil Citronella Oil Clary-Sage Oil Clove Oil Coriander Oil Cypress Oil Dill Oil Eucalyptus Oil Fennel Oil Fir Needle Oil Frankincense Oil Geranium Oil German Chamomile Oil Ginger Oil Grapefruit Oil Helichrysum Oil Hyssop Oil Iris-Root Oil Jasmine Oil Juniper Oil Labdanum Oil Lavender Oil Lemon-Balm Oil Lemongrass Oil Lemon Oil Lime Oil Longleaf-Pine Oil Mandarin Oil Marjoram Oil Mimosa Oil Myrrh Oil Myrtle Oil Neroli Oil Niaouli Oil Nutmeg Oil Orange Oil Oregano Oil Palmarosa Oil Patchouli Oil Peppermint Oil Peru-Balsam Oil Petitgrain Oil Pine-Long Leaf Oil Pine-Needle Oil Pine-Swiss Oil Rosemary Oil Rose Oil Rosewood Oil Sage Oil Sandalwood Oil Savory Oil Spearmint Oil Spikenard Oil Swiss-Pine Oil Tangerine Oil Tea-Tree Oil Thyme Oil Vanilla Oil Verbena Oil Vetiver Oil Violet Oil White-Camphor Oil Yarrow Oil Ylang-Ylang Oil Aromatherapy
Healing Baths For Colds
Using Essential Oils
AROMATHERAPY: HERBAL & CARRIER OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES
Almond, Sweet Oil Apricot Kernel Oil Argan Oil Arnica Oil Avocado Oil Baobab Oil Black Cumin Oil Black Currant Oil Black Seed Oil Borage Seed Oil Calendula Oil Camelina Oil Castor Oil Coconut Oil Comfrey Oil Evening Primrose Oil Flaxseed Oil Grapeseed Oil Hazelnut Oil Hemp Seed Oil Jojoba Oil Kukui Nut Oil Macadamia Nut Oil Meadowfoam Seed Oil Mullein Oil Neem Oil Olive Oil Palm Oil Plantain Oil Plum Kernel Oil Poke Root Oil Pomegranate Seed Oil Pumpkin Seed Oil Rosehip Seed Oil Safflower Oil Sea Buckthorn Oil Sesame Seed Oil Shea Nut Oil Soybean Oil St. Johns Wort Oil Sunflower Oil Tamanu Oil Vitamin E Oil Wheat Germ Oil
HELPFUL RELATED MOONDRAGON NUTRITION BASICS LINKS
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Amino Acids Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Antioxidants Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Enzymes Information MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Herbs Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Homeopathics Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Hydrosols Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Minerals Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Mineral Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary & Cosmetic Supplements Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Dietary Supplements Introduction MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Specialty Supplements MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Vitamins Introduction
NUTRITION BASICS ARTICLES
MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: 4 Basic Nutrients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Foods That Contain Additives & Artificial Ingredients MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Is Aspartame A Safe Sugar Substitute? MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Guidelines For Selecting & Preparing Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Destroy MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Foods That Heal MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: The Micronutrients: Vitamins & Minerals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Avoid Overcooking Your Foods MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Phytochemicals MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Increase Your Consumption of Raw Produce MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Limit Your Use of Salt MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Use Proper Cooking Utensils MoonDragon's Nutrition Basics: Choosing The Best Water & Types of Water
RELATED MOONDRAGON HEALTH LINKS & INFORMATION
MoonDragon's Nutrition Information Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Therapy Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Analysis Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Diet Index MoonDragon's Nutritional Recipe Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Therapy: Preparing Produce for Juicing MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Additives Index MoonDragon's Nutrition Information: Food Safety Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Index MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Articles MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Back Pain MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Labor & Birth MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Blending Chart MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Essential Oil Details MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Links MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Miscarriage MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Post Partum MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Childbearing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy For Problems in Pregnancy & Birthing MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #1 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Chart of Essential Oils #2 MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Tips MoonDragon's Aromatherapy Uses MoonDragon's Alternative Health Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Information Overview MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Touch & Movement Therapies Index MoonDragon's Alternative Health Therapy: Touch & Movement: Aromatherapy MoonDragon's Alternative Therapy: Touch & Movement - Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Alternative Health: Therapeutic Massage MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 1 MoonDragon's Holistic Health Links Page 2 MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Nutrition Basics Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy Index MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Massage Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Hydrotherapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Pain Control Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Relaxation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Steam Inhalation Therapy MoonDragon's Health & Wellness: Therapy - Herbal Oils Index
For a full list of available products from Mountain Rose Herbs, click on banner below:
MOONDRAGON'S REALM - WEBSITE DIRECTORY
A website map to help you find what you are looking for on MoonDragon.org's Website. Available pages have been listed under appropriate directory headings.