10 Foods to Survive on a Deserted Island

Let’s assume you shipwreck on a deserted island (knock wood). Somehow, half-buried in the sand you find a magic box with a message in it. The message asks you to specify 10 foods that the box will magically bring to you every day. These will be the same foods every day, so your choices have to be very specific. If you choose foods like pizza, which hold no nutritional value, you will die within a few months.

I was inspired to write this blog post because of the story about Napoleon. He was imprisoned for a while in the 1800s, and was asked what food he would like in prison. His captors would serve him the same food daily, hoping that he would expire “naturally” out of malnutrition.

But here’s how to trick the magic box (or your captors) to give you the highest bang for your buck, not only keeping you alive until rescue arrives, but to make you thrive!

1. 150 gr of pastured beef or goat heart
The heart must be cooked in bone broth with onion, garlic, sea salt, and grass-fed butter. We pick a heart over muscle meat because it’s more nutritious and it has the highest levels of CoQ10. We don’t pick liver because its extremely high levels of copper and A will work against your health if consumed daily (although liver must be consumed once a week on different living conditions, of course).

2. 150 gr of wild Alaskan salmon, sashimi raw
Very high levels of omega-3 and many other nutrients. Wild sardines or wild trout would be my No2 choices.

3. 100 gr of wild, raw oysters
If liver is the most nutrient-dense food of all, oysters is the No2. We pick it because of its high levels of zinc among others.

4. 1 pastured duck egg, raw or fried
Chicken eggs hold nothing to duck eggs. Duck eggs are more nutrient dense per gram, and they create fewer allergies than chicken eggs. Cooked in coconut oil if fried.

5.30 gr of sunflower seeds, soaked for 4 hours
These have very high levels of B1 and E (higher than that of almonds). Extra B1 is needed on a diet that doesn’t contain legumes or enriched flours.

6. 100 gr kale, raw
The most nutrient-dense vegetable. Served with extra virgin olive oil and sea salt.

7. 250 gr of white potatoes, baked
We need some starches, no matter what keto people say. We carry friendly bacteria in our gut that can only live on starch. White potatoes also carry the important resistant type of starch.

8. 100 gr of asparagus, or 100 gr of an avocado
Asparagus seared in coconut oil. Avocados would be my personal second choice, but you might want to pick that instead, if you are after more fiber and even more nutrition.

9. 500 gr home-made raw, full-fat goat kefir
Fermented foods are needed, and some calcium too. Kefir is the definite powerhouse in this case.

10. 1 pink grapefruit per day
Antioxidants and enough vitamin C. If grapefruits are unavailable (due to season), 150 gr of blueberries will do.

And of course, lots of natural, spring water.

As you can see below (click to view larger), that set of foods daily give you pretty much over 100% of your daily needs for most needed nutrients. You can’t go wrong with these!

Don’t be afraid about the trans-fats shown there and the low omega-3 shown in the chart. The database that contained similar foods did not include their pastured/wild versions, and so the data in that respect are a bit skewed. The vitamins/minerals are pretty much correct though.

Best Cauliflower Rice Tips

Cauliflower fried rice is the best substitute for Chinese fried rice on low carb and grain-free Paleo diets. Here’s a generic recipe for it, but accompanied with hints and tips on how to make the recipe work best. You see, if you treat cauliflower like rice, you will end up with a mushy, cabbage-smelling dish. Following the tips below, will bring your fried cauliflower much closer to the real thing.

Ingredients (for 2)
* Half a cauliflower head, in small florets
* 2 chicken eggs, or 1 duck egg
* 4 tablespoons of olive oil
* 1 small leek, cleaned and chopped
* 1/2 cup of frozen peas
* 1 cup of boneless chicken, or shelled shrimp
* 1/2 cup of mushrooms, chopped (and/or carrots, peppers, broccoli etc)
* 1 green onion, chopped
* 1 clove of garlic, chopped
* 1 tablespoon of gluten-free tamari soy sauce, or coconut aminos
* 1 teaspoon of turmeric (optional)
* black pepper to taste

Method
1. On a small frying pan, with a tablespoon of olive oil, crack an egg on low heat. Using a wooden spoon, swirl continuously the egg, until you achieve a scrambled egg consistency. Turn off the heat before the egg is fully cooked, set aside.
2. On a wok or frying pan, add the chicken (or shrimp), 1.5 tablespoons of olive oil, peas, mushrooms/veggies, leeks, garlic, and black pepper. Stir occasionally. Cook in medium heat until the chicken is done and the leeks have become transparent and soft, and there’s no liquid left in the pan. Set aside.
3. Using a food processor and its S blade, add half of the cauliflower in it. Give it 5-6 jolts until the cauliflower has become “riced”. Do not make the pieces too small, but it should still feel a bit chunky. Set aside, and process the rest of the cauliflower.
4. On a very large frying pan (I used a 14″) that is not wok-like (but rather it has a flat surface), add 1.5 tablespoons of olive oil, the turmeric (if using), and the cauliflower. Under high heat, fry the cauliflower, stirring occasionally, until it starts to get burned marks and it starts to feel dry.
5. Add the meat mixture in to the big frying pan with the cauliflower rice, and stir. Add the scrambled eggs, green onion, and stir. A minute later, add the soy sauce, stir well, turn off the heat, and serve.

Tips
1. We use a very large, leveled frying pan instead of a wok because woks tend to trap moist. We’re trying to get rid of as much moist from the dish, because it’s that moist that brings the cabbage smell to cauliflower.
2. We’re using leeks because these emulate the sweetness of rice. Without it, the dish comes out a bit flat in taste.
3. Do not process the cauliflower too much, or too much moist will come out of them.
4. Do not use as much soy sauce as you would use for rice. If it requires more salt, add sea salt.
5. Do not crack the egg on the same pan as the cauliflower. While scrambling the egg on the side of the pan works with rice, it doesn’t work as well for cauliflower. Same goes for the meat mixture.

Extant: a review

Watched the first two episodes of “Extant”, the new Spielberg-produced sci-fi show, starring Halle Berry. There are several problems with the series. It’s really a surprise having a veteran like Spielberg allowing such easy mistakes from his writers.

The biggest mistake is that the series is a localized story. No sci-fi show or movie ever survived in the long run by only telling a localized story without providing a larger “universe” for the world that the story is taking place. We don’t know what the year is, we don’t know what kind of technology is available (from one side we have high AI and interstellar space travel, but then we have old fashioned cars and button-pushing washing machines? Really?), we know nothing of how the world is organized in that time, and we know nothing about how humans got so far in space, or how far. This is a grave mistake for any sci-fi story. It shows no vision. It just shows a guy with a script getting the go-ahead to shoot the series, but that’s not the type of vision that creates cult, or successful shows.

Cult shows are cult because they make their extended universe believable by providing a lot of information about it. It’s as simple as that. People get hooked with believable detail, even if the show might even mildly suck in other perspectives. For example. Babylon 5 was a tragedy in terms of filmmaking (camera, sound work, and even dialog was the worst), but the believable “large”, epic story it told, and the detail it provided for the world it operated on, it made it a cult show. Star Trek and Star Wars owe their success to this type of “complete universe” vision too. Extant is not such a show. It’s just an idea, set in a non-descript world.

And then there’s the AI. Halle Berry and her husband in the show have adopted a child android as their son, which behaves 99% like a human. This itself is unbelievable. Having worked in AI myself for years, such type of AI won’t be developed for many hundreds of years later, *if ever*. People have talked since the ’70s that “true AI is just 10 years away”, but of course this hasn’t happened. The kind of AI that we WILL get (most likely through Google) is going to be similar to the computer on Star Trek: TNG. Smart enough to carry away complex actions, but not even close to be “human”. This whole AI subplot weakens the series as a believable sci-fi show. Of course, Spielberg himself created an “AI” movie back in the ’90s, so he’s obviously a fan of the concept. I’m willing to forget about this, since he has personal ties to the subject matter, but not insisting on universe-building from the get-go, it shows that the series is amateur hour that has come across to lots of money.

My advice: watch it for fun, but don’t invest in it, because it will disappoint.

Paleo Tuna Casserole

Ingredients (for 2-3)
* 2 small cans of tuna (solid chunks), or a tuna fillet
(* For veg*n, you can use 150 gr of “chicken of the woods” mushrooms)
* 2 large zucchinis
* 2 tablespoons of olive oil
* 1 cup of ‘cream of mushroom’ soup (recipe with dairy, or without)
* 1/3 cup of frozen peas
* 1/4 cup chopped onion
* 1/2 cup coconut, almond or full-fat dairy milk
* 1/2 cup of crumbled pork rinds (optional)

Execution
1. Wash the zucchinis and cut them in half. Using the Blade A of the spiralizer device (the blade with no triangles that creates ribbon-like noodles), spiralize them. Then cut the long spiralized ribbons to not be so long. If you don’t have a spiralizer, cut the zucchinis in half, and then cut thin slices out of them (about 3″ long each). Preheat oven at 400 F (200 C).

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2. On the stove, use a deep frying pan and pour the olive oil in it. Under medium heat lightly fry the onion and peas in it for 3 minutes. Stir occasionally with a wooden spoon.
3. Add the cream of mushroom soup, milk, and stir until the mixture becomes smooth, it starts bubbling and most of its liquid has evaporated. Turn off the heat.
4. Drain the tuna cans, and pour the tuna into the hot mixture, and very gently stir 2-3 times. Add the zucchini noodles and frozen peas and stir gently again a few times.

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5. Pour the whole thing into a baking dish. Crumble the optional pork rinds with your fingers and spread them on top. Bake for ~30 minutes until it gets golden brown, and there’s not a lot of liquid left in the dish (zucchini tends to release liquid). Serve hot.

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Regarding honor killings

“Pregnant Pakistani woman stoned to death after marrying for love. ‘Honour killing’ in broad daylight outside Lahore high court involved father and brothers,” says The Guardian.

Terrible news, of course. But the also disturbing thing is that the commentators at the Guardian continue to get it wrong. They place “religion” and “non-education” as the reasons why these honor killings happen. I’m sorry, but these people, these supposedly progressive and smart readers of The Guardian, think only skin-deep.

YES, religion is often the vehicle where this terrible action materializes. But it’s not the reason why it happens. As someone who was beaten rather regularly by my traditional Greek father for having my engagement break apart in the early ’90s, I can tell you, there was no religion behind it. And education has often little to do with all this too.

It was primarily social pressure.

You see, when you live in tribal-like communities (like most non-Westerners do), where everybody kind of knows everybody else in the vicinity at large, there’s extreme social pressure to maintain status and control within both the group, and within the family. My father constantly used to tell me that “we live with others”, hence, in his mind, he was supposed to maintain an IMAGE. The image of a strong family man. A man who had everything under control. A man where you could TRUST to give him a job (my father was a house builder, a profession that requires trust).

As such, having a daughter breaking up her engagement to a man from the same village, it was a social disaster for him (in his own mind at least). The gossip that ensued was unbearable for my family. So he acted out any way he knew how to maintain his illusion of control.

I have forgiven my dad, I hold no grudges whatsoever. In fact, there is nothing to forgive, because I know where he’s coming from. Exactly because I can understand his limited point of view, and even if I don’t agree with it, it’s enough for me to not hold grudges.

Besides, the people who carry out these acts are victims themselves. Victims of their own inability to escape cultural programming, and victims of the closed society they’re in. Close societies like that do have their advantages (they never let one of their own go hungry, for example), but you gotta play with their unwritten, irrational rules to gain their support. Societies are exactly as twisted as humans can be, because they’re made out of humans.

So, Primary reasons of honor killings/beatings:

- Re-assuring of one’s social status by doing what others expects you to do according to the local societal rules.
- Power and control within the immediate and extended family (ego and super-ego at play).
- Illusion that this way they save the rest of the family (by taking out the bad apples, the family is again pure enough for the society’s expectations).

Secondary reasons that act as permission, rather than as the main reasons:
- Cultural traditions masquerading as religious laws
- Low educational status
- Dowry and other such financial assets getting lost

So there you have it.

More Lucid Dreams

Great lucid dream I just had. I woke up this morning at 8:45 AM when the gardener outside started making noises, but I slept again half an hour later. So I became lucid, during two dreams in a row. The second dream, I was supposed to be this old executive in NY, and had a daughter who despised me. So I get into a meeting where they started talking finances and stuff. Well, I had enough playing along with that bullshit. I got up without saying anything to anybody, get in the hallway of the building, and I proclaimed loudly that I’m not going to participate in such a boring, shitty dream.

Next thing I know, everything goes black, or static, or something. I truly felt that I had died in my sleep. I had reached the void. I got scared (and I’m not easily scared in dreams anymore, but I felt as if I died) and started shouting for Esther, my Spirit Guide. Within a second or two, I was back at the same hallway, and Esther was there. She was not amused.

There was a conversation that took place about some things that at the time I was thinking that “I should not forget them”, but I did forget them. But I did remember two important questions and answers:
- Is Heva, as my Higher Self, real? The answer was “yes”.
- Are past lives real, and the past lives I experienced under hypnosis real? The answer was also “yes”.

At that point, two people, one man and one woman appears, with files on their hands. Esther seemed to be feeling a bit anxious. She introduced them as “tax collectors”, or at least, something important in the whole life-death-afterlife circus. Their one question to her was:

- “Why is she so evolved already?“, and that had a connotation of “having evolved spiritually faster than others within a given set of past lives, or at least since I became spiritual about 10 months ago”, and also “why are you helping her by giving her answers?”.

I didn’t let Esther reply. I did my own replying. I “excused” myself for my “premature” spiritual growing by telling them that I did some spiritual work and meditation in previous life, and that seems to have stuck (I was referring to my past life in Israel). They were satisfied with the answer, they both checked something on their files, and they went away.

Esther was adamant to get me back to play along in the dream. I complained that the “script” was boring and ridiculous, and that I wanted to have more interesting dreams. She claimed that this dream is one of the best if I was to let it play out, and that I should really give it a try. I finally conceded.

So the dream continued from where it had left off, like nothing had happened in-between, and towards the end of it, I was a super-hero. Not my average dream, indeed. It was fun, I guess. It had its moments.

I just wish I could remember what I told myself to remember, but forgot…

Regarding OBEs

So I had quite a few OBEs yesterday & today (out of body experience, aka astral projection). After waking up in the middle of the night and sleeping again, lucidity is easily reached. Then, you simply induce an OBE through a lucid dream (this method is called DILD, other methods include WILD and FILD). So I went to a few places, including my hometown, Preveza, Greece.

There, I met with another girl from a nearby town, and I told her my name and where I was from and where I now live. I told her to ask for me when she wakes up, to see if we actually shared the same dream. She was the only one I found in the crowd who was also lucid, the rest of the people there were dreaming, and behaved like sleep-walkers. On my way back, found another lucid person, and we exchanged a thumbs-up, after thinking that “if we could go wherever we want to when we’re lucid, who the heck cares on travelling in real life?”

I also visited a wormhole (with some spaceships in there too), the void, visited some people I care about, etc. I had no trouble going from one place to another, although visiting other planets was time consuming it seemed.

But here’s the thing. OBEs are not literal, they need interpretation. While they can be pretty lucid, the things that happen in there aren’t as “solid” as in real life. Reality there fluctuates, just as it does in dreams, deep meditation, or when taken psychedelics. PhD researcher Aardema says in his book about OBEs that when we don’t use our mechanical brain to filter stuff out, our consciousness exists in a type of reality where many different quantum possibilities are probable, that’s why things can morph or change, based in our perception. That New Age belief that “thought can change reality” is true, but not as much in our reality, but for the reality that lies beyond our brain’s filtering mechanisms. The further you go into that type of consciousness, the more formless, shapeable and alien reality becomes.

So anyway, my conclusion is that it’s important to have this kind of experiences, because they get you ready on accepting death. There’s nothing to be afraid in death, apart from your own belief system (if you believe in Hell, you’ll surely find it because your consciousness will construct it). I’d go as far as to say that I’m probably ready to even face ego-death.

But as far as it goes about our current daily lives, these types of experiences are often irrelevant. Entheogens might provide some insight about how to live our daily lives, and certainly my own meetings with my Higher Self and Guide have been very helpful, but I don’t see them as mandatory. They’re interesting, for sure, but an already “stable” person don’t need such experiences to live their life. They already know what to do and how to do it deep inside.

My point is, that people who judge others for not being “spiritual” (e.g. caring about psychonaut-related matters), are mistaken. Not everybody needs such experiences to function properly in the society, or even to the world beyond. They’re some well-adjusted individuals who simply don’t need OBEs, entheogens, meditation, New Age crap etc. My husband seems to be such an individual. I now know that I don’t need them either, although I did need them last year, when I reshaped my world views and found my place in the universe. I now see all that stuff as tools to live well and get prepared for the next step, not as the end-all. After you’ve used the tool to construct or fix something, then you might not need it again.

As well-known pop-philosopher Alan Watts said: “If you get the message, hang up the phone“.

Review: “The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine”

Avery sent me a free copy of Dr Terry Wahls new book, “The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine” to check it out.

The book starts with Dr Wahls health story, and how she got Multiple Sclerosis (MS). She was a vegetarian, and an athlete, and yet, she became very ill in early 2000s. She tried various solutions, including taking huge amounts of vitamins, adding and removing foods, when she finally managed to almost reverse her illness after following a wholesome Paleo-like diet.

I’ve been doing various forms of Paleo for 2.5 years now, and I’m glad to see Dr Wahls recognizing the different needs that different patients have. In the book, she suggests three different diets, one more restrictive than the other, depending on the severity of the symptoms. The first one simply removes gluten, dairy, eggs, and processed foods, the second one additionally removes most grains and legumes (Paleo-like), and the third one is a strict Paleo-ketogenic diet (minus eggs). She went through all three diets herself while trying out things, and she’s currently in the Paleo-ketogenic regiment.

Throughout the book there are testimonials of other people with MS, who have tried the Paleo/Wahls-diet and have semi-reversed their condition (aka made their lives livable). The book is very easily read, everything is laid out in plain English for everybody to understand.

My favorite parts of the book (that in my opinion needed more expansion) were the hints that Dr Wahls was giving about non-native EMF radiation, infections, mold, and other environmental problems that can have as much impact in our health than eating bad food has. I also loved her suggestions on eating sea vegetables, and offal.

The only part that I really disliked in the book was her insistence on removing eggs from the diet. She is deathly allergic to eggs, but she’s trying to impose this restriction to others too. In a response to me she claimed that “egg allergies are actually dramatically under-diagnosed”, but I have my reservations on this. I also hold reservations on her dairy suggestions. In my experience, I found that often, dairy is a secondary intolerance, created by gluten intolerance. When gluten is taken out of the picture, and the gut is healed, after a few months fermented goat/sheep dairy could often be eaten again without ill effects. But even if dairy must be taken out, given the severity of MS, I think her no-eggs suggestion is still overblown. Sure, some people will be intolerant to eggs, but I don’t expect the majority to be so.

Another addition that should be made in this book is information about FODMAPs. In my dealings with the Paleo community in the last few years, I have witnessed a 5%-10% of dieters who didn’t get better on plain Paleo, but had to go Paleo+Fodmaps to finally have their gut healed.

Other than that, I think that this is one of the most important new Paleo books out there, and people with major health problems (not just MS), should have a good read of this book and follow its instructions. It’s a book that explains in very simple terms the whys and the hows, and in my own experience with my own health problems, it has worked.

Healthy Food on the Budget for $100 per month

There are many financially-struggling people among us, and this is an article for them. This is my ideal of a healthy diet on the budget. I have included below a 2-day program, which pretty much fills-up the daily nutritional needs of the average adult, for a bit over $3 per day. The suggestions below are devoid of processed junk food, they’re gluten-free (which you will need, since gluten prohibits nutrient absorption, and most people react badly to it unbeknownst to them), it’s sugar-free, and it’s industrial seed oil-free (which create inflammation). It’s a moderate fat, moderate protein, and moderate carb diet (up to 200 gr net carbs). It’s not exactly Paleo, and not exactly vegetarian, but somewhere in between of both.

Day 1:
Breakfast, $1:
- Boiled egg
- Smoothie: full-fat milk kefir with 1/3 cup frozen fruits
Lunch, $1:
- 1 big potato, fried as french fries
- 25 gr liver (stir-fried) or 100 gr pork
- 1/6th of a big onion (stir-fried)
- 2 kale leaves (stir-fried)
- Green salad leaves, raw
Snack, $0.20:
- 25 gr raw sunflower seeds (raw, then soaked for 4 hrs)
Dinner, $1:
- Lentils or other beans (soaked for 24 hours, then cooked)
- Fried small fish
- 1/2 tomato

Day 2:
Breakfast, $1:
- Fried egg with a small potato hash
- Smoothie: full-fat milk kefir with 1/3 cup frozen fruits
Lunch, $1:
- Brown rice (preferably sprouted)
- 50 gr mussels or half of a can of oysters
- Veggies (raw or steamed)
Snack, $0.20:
- 25 gr raw sunflower seeds (raw, then soaked for 4 hrs)
Dinner, $1:
- Soup with veggies and boned chicken, or 50 gr pork heart

The important parts of the above recommendation:
- Very small amounts of liver are enough, since it’s the more nutrient-dense food known in existence, and it’s very cheap ($2/lb). Just 25 gr has a lot of B12, A, copper, riboflavin. You should not be having too much liver if you’re having it too often (because of potential A and copper toxicity), hence the just 25 gr suggestion. No more than 2-3 times a week, at that size.
- Use butter or olive oil, no seed oils or margarine.
- Canned oysters (drain them if they don’t come with olive oil) are needed to balance the liver’s copper, with zinc. They’re the second most nutrient-dense food known. The Dollar Tree sells them for $1.
- Buy meat and fish at your local Asian super-market. That’s where you’re going to find dirt cheap small fish, or mussels, or also cheap pork. Freeze what you don’t use.
- Sunflower seeds are the snack with the highest nutrition compared to other nuts and seeds (especially for vitamin E, where you’d need it, since no other cheap food provides it at that amount). Soak them for 4 hours before eating them, to deactivate their anti-nutrients.
- Ferment your kefir for 24 hours, before you blend it with frozen fruits. You’ll need the probiotics they offer, and not the aggravating lactose.
- Soak your legumes for 24 hours before cooking. This will deactivate their anti-nutrients. Same goes for brown rice, where you can also sprout it. There are various tutorials about it online.
- Potatoes are super-cheap, but you’ll also need your veggies: some fresh, some frozen in bulk. Get fruits in bulk, frozen. Unfortunately, most fresh fruit is expensive.
- If you buy a whole cabbage for cheap, ferment most of it (as sauerkraut or kimchi). This way, it will keep longer, and it will give you probiotics that you need.
- Buy your cheap chicken with bone, in bulk, frozen. You need it with bone because you must be eating at least 1 food slow-cooked, with bone (for collagen reasons, to keep your gut healthy).
- If your county’s water is bad in quality (e.g. too much chlorine and added fluoride), you might need more money, to buy bottled spring water. Filtering tap water won’t cut it for fluoride.
- Use Cronometer.com to track how well you eat, nutritionally. Also enable the “net carbs” option in its preferences.

Regarding sprouting

I’ve avoided legumes and grains for far too long. My body almost shut down in the 2.5 years of low-carb Paleo and even ketosis. Towards the end, I spent days and nights salivating about… rice. For someone so long on a high-fat diet, where I was fat-adapted, I should be getting my energy from fat, but instead, my body was instructing me that it needed starch. So I’ve added to my Paleo diet: legumes (lentils, beans — except peanuts), and rice. I felt better almost instantly.

However, this is not an article to shoot down the Paleo beliefs that legumes/grains are bad for you. I believe that when are cooked as-is, they are indeed harmful. They contain high amount of phytates and lectins. But then again, this is also true for nuts & seeds (if not more so!), and yet, the Paleo people are gulping them down like it’s candy.

After a lot of searching, I came to the realization that all these foods require soaking and/or sprouting. You see, the biological categorization of “seeds”, “nuts”, “grains”, “legumes” are all human categories. In reality, these are the same type of food: the babies of plants!

As such, the plant is protecting its babies by incorporating various poisonous ingredients in them, so humans and animals don’t eat them. And this is where soaking and sprouting is coming to complete the picture. These techniques are “fooling” the seeds to germinate. So when you soak or sprout from raw, these poisons are diluted away, or they get transformed to digestive enzymes (so they create no problems in the gut), or transform to even more vitamins (to aid the seed to supposedly germinate — or so it thinks!).

So now, I soak or sprout all my seeds, nuts, legumes and even brown rice. There are various techniques that can be found online. Especially for nuts, it was a revelation. Much better taste when soaked! I will never go back to eating dried “seeds”.