In yesterday’s podcast, we talked about prana – the powerful energy and life force of the universe. Prana is a subtle energy that fills us, but it’s also the life energy that’s found in nature.
While breathwork and noticing our breathing is one of the best ways for us to tap into our internal prana and feel that energy moving through our bodies, we can also cultivate our prana through our interactions with the world around us.
When I first starting learning about Ayurveda, I learned to appreciate the power of food. What we eat literally becomes our skin and muscles and cells inside of us. What we eat is what we are.
And, what we eat can also nurture and increase or it can drain our prana. So how do we know which foods are high in prana and will nurture our spirit as well as our body?
Foods that are High in Prana
Perhaps unsurprisingly, high-prana foods are fresh, whole foods. Foods that are grown or raised and are unprocessed. White bread is a lot different than pure wheat. Cherry jam doesn’t have the same zing as a ripe, fresh cherry.
So once again, we have a reason to eat our fruits and vegetables. We want whole foods that are fresh from the Earth in order to nurture our prana.
How to keep your foods high in prana
Besides not having additional processing, it’s important to think about how we treat the foods that we eat. In Ayurveda, they would say that freezing, microwaving, or burning foods destroys the prana in it. Similarly, eating leftovers that have been stored in the fridge would be considered low-prana foods.
Now, I’m going to be honest: I still eat foods from the freezer. And sometimes I use the microwave, or even eat leftovers. This is not about perfection. But, I am aware of the effect these foods can have, and if possible, I’ll mix my leftovers with some fresh foods, or put fresh spices on frozen meals. Those small touches can boost the prana in the foods that you eat.
Another interesting thing about prana is that it also relates to how the food is treated when it’s grown and processed. So soil rich in microbes, that’s left on the plant until it’s ripe, that’s picked by loving hands and transported safely will have more prana than a tomato that’s been grown in poor soil, picked when it’s still green and shipped and stored for a month under refrigeration.
In this way, protecting our prana is about protecting the environment. Nurturing our positive energy relies on us nurturing the positive energy in the world around us. And that is a beautiful lesson that we can take with us.
Soaking and Sprouting to Increase prana
Another way to increase prana in dried foods like grains, nuts, and beans is to soak or sprout them. This makes sense: if you take a lentil and you actually start to sprout it – you’ve woken up chemical processes and enzymes to help the plant grow – you’ve made your food buzz with life and prana again.
One of my favorite things to do is to soak nuts like almonds and walnuts. It takes a dry, “dead” food and makes it come a little more alive. I always find that eating soaked nuts actually helps me feel fuller and more nourished when I eat them too.
So today, I’m sharing a soaked almond recipe that makes the perfect snack. It’s super easy to do, and once you get started, you can’t believe you ever ate your almonds in a different way. By the way, you can substitute any raw nut for the almonds in this recipe!
- 1 cup almonds
- 2 cups room temperature water
- 1 tbsp + ½ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- Combine the almonds, water, and 1 tbsp salt in a big jar or bowl, stir, and let sit for about 8 hours or overnight.
- Drain and rinse the almonds, and preheat the oven to 300F.
- Add ½ tsp salt and ¼ tsp cinnamon (or any other desired spices) and mix into the almonds.
- Spread the almonds in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes-1hour. After about 30 minutes, check the almonds every 10 minutes. You’re looking to make sure that the almonds are cooked all the way through and are crispy, not squishy.
- Cool the almonds and store in a container in the fridge for up to 1 month.
Thanks for reading, and have a wonderful day,
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