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Trouble digesting nuts

I seem to be having some trouble digesting nuts. The nuts I’m eating are mainly cashews and pistachios (raw). I don’t want to go into detail but let’s just saw I know they’re passing through me.

Any idea why this is happening? Is this normal? What can I do to fix this problem?



  • Xbillyx,

    Are you soaking them before you eat them? A lot of nuts have enzyme inhibitors and soaking them makes digestion much easier. If you want them to be dry, you can soak and then put in the dehydrator. :)

  • xbillyx, I have the exact same question! It was going to be my next post.

    I have always germinated (since 2004) and I did not have any problems digesting. Only recently in the last few months have I noticed I am not digesting. I am eating slower (chewing more)... and still I have the same question.

    The only 3 things I have yet to try along with chewing well is:

    1) drinking a nice hot/warm glass of water 15-30 minutes before my meal to get the digestive juices going. I’m not very good at remebering so it may be a while before I do this regularly.

    2) food combining “to the next level”. I’m not good at this either, but I’m doing a whole lot better at trying and succeeding than before.

    3) Ask the people on goneraw.com to see what they recommend.

  • Cashews do not need to be soaked, right? It also happens with hemp. It’s frustrating.

  • I heard somewhere on these boards than cashews most of the time are not raw. They may say organic and the like, but they use fire to heat it enough to break open the shell. Is this true? I got sick to my stomach a couple weeks ago because I ate way to many nuts, especially cashews. So now I just eat brazil nuts and almonds. Pine nuts when recipes call for them. But I stay way away from peanuts and cashews. My stomach hasnt upset me since.

  • Cashews and peanuts are not nuts. Cashews do not need to be soaked… and yes, I heard it is hard to find them truly raw.

    So aside from soaking… what could cause “trouble in digesting” or what could help the digestion of protein? I know fruits like pineapple and papaya have protein-digesting enzymes. But, who wants to eat pinepple after eating a raw meal containing germinated walnuts… the combination does not leave a pleasant taste in the mouth. I think that’s because of the protein-digesting enzyme. So besides that… Other ideas?

  • Cashews are not nuts, it’s true, but they are seeds. Seeds contain the same inhibitors and need to be soaked. David Wolfe sells “truly raw” cashews on his site; they are hand opened, I believe.

    Cashews do need to be soaked in order to make them more digestible. Some people are more sensitive to legumes, nuts and seeds than others.

    Here’s a great thread from this forum about this. :) http://goneraw.com/forums/2/topics/10

  • I recently met an amazing raw guru who has been a raw foodist for 20 years. He looks amazing and youthful. You can tell he feels amazing too!

    He suggested taking enzymes with all nut products. I haven’t tried this yet as I haven’t been eating nuts recently… I am meeting him on Friday to get some more info. I’ll post again and let you know exactly what he says but for now I would reccommend taking a high quality digestive enzyme 30min before consuming nuts.

    Try it out and let us know if it helps!

  • Thanks RawVee.

    LindaintheRaw: What sort of digestive enzyme do you recommend? Eating some pineapple? Or, are you referring to a pill?

  • Hmmm… Thanks for the advice LindaintheRaw. I started taking enzymes back in December. It was only after then that I noticed a “digestion” issue. They were Enzymedica Gold… not the cheap kind. I stopped taking them… maybe I need a new kind. I know I have to try different ones to see which ones work for me. I’ll try enzymes as my #4 choice.

  • I’m wondering if it may be your bodies way of telling you that it doesn’t want nuts anymore. Everytime I’m high raw for over a month or two my body starts rejecting nuts. Possibly nuts are a transitional food until our bodies become clearer. I’m not sure about this, just kind of thinking out loud.

  • I have noticed too that the more raw I am, like you Spirit, that I start to have aversions to things with too many nuts. I can have them blended, such as pine nuts to make a creamy salad dressing or crackers, and almonds for almond milk, but anything else I get sick to my stomach just thinking about.

  • I agree with spirit, I always try to limit my intake of nuts. Maybe you should just take a break from them for a while…

    I’d try the digestive enzymes from this site www.radicalhealth.com/order

  • I’m in agreement with Spiritedmama, Spirit and Lindaintheraw. The more clean and raw my diet the less well I digest nuts. They taste good going down but generally Slooow down all my energy on every level. Once or twice a week nuts soaked and blended in sauces and dressings seems to satisfy any craving I may have without side effects.

  • What about hemp protein powder? That should be alright, right?

  • Although I don’t use Hemp powder, my mother does. She had bad heartburn and acid reflux after consuming Hemp. She really wanted more vegan protein so she now buys the whole hemp seed, soaks it and then grinds it up in her smoothies and has not had any problems since. My mother is about 50% raw.

  • LindaintheRaw: Yes, I did try to limit them… and I should probably limit them even more. I will definitely continue doing that. Thanks.

  • It worked! I ate less nuts… and, well, let’s just say it worked! I’m eating more nuts now and I don’t have “signs” of “anything”. But, I will continue to keep my intake at a limit. Thanks for your help.

    a few days later I just realized, that I am only soaking nuts for 12-24 hours. I’m going to try 24-48 hours. That should help too.

  • wonderfully said, spirit.

    i love people who have common sense, and say things straight up like that.

    I too, think nuts are a transition food.

    I used to eat raw almonds. now i eat roasted / slightly salted almonds.

    i accidentally bit into a raw almond, and i was like fuck that. i can feel that shit.

    i don't feel the r & s almonds go down, it's wonderful.

    don't matter anyways, i'll be switching to roasted pepitas. then i'll be getting rid of all nuts / seeds soon.

    then i'll be hittin' up the avocado.

  • Hello xbillyx,

    Usually, it's the nuts and seeds that are higher in protein that have a larger of amount of enzyme inhibitors. These kinds of nuts and seeds tend to be higher in phytic acid, a powerful enzyme inhibitor. Phosphorus is contained within the phytic acid compound; it is the phosphorus that promotes the explosive growth of the plant.

    That said, even though cashews are relatively low in protein, from the information I've been able to obtain, it does seem to have a fair amount of phytic acid. Therefore, it might be a good idea to soak them. Sunfood.com recommends soaking for 7-8 hours.

    Many, including David Wolfe, do not like to soak them because it softens the texture considerably. I notice they end up kind of mushy. However, if you're using them in a smoothie or any other blended creation, it shouldn't matter too much.

    Yes, most cashews on the market are not raw! These cashews are not processed as carefully, and they tend to be moldy and full of mycotoxins. Pistachios and walnuts are two other nuts that tend to accumulate mold. The truly raw versions might be less so.

    Digestive enzymes are also a good idea. Someone mentioned Enzymedica above. Renew Life is also a good brand.

    Pancreatic enzymes are great, but not vegan. The trypsin and chymotrypsin in these products break down everything because they are the master enzymes.

    You might also consider working with a doctor/naturopath to get the dosage right on an HCl supplement. Many people produce too little HCl as they get older, and this can inhibit the digestive process.

    Lastly, animal fats are more digestible than plant fats. This is one of the reasons some people have trouble converting to a vegetarian diet. If you are committed to this kind of diet, but just have too much trouble digesting nuts and seeds, you can either try to eat more cooked vegetarian foods with a larger amount of grains and root veggies (which will change your macronutrient ratios) or you can try to include more raw fat from avocados and olives (both fruits) or coconut (technically a seed).

    Hope this helps!



  • powerliferpowerlifer Raw Newbie
    edited June 25

    I would give digestive enzymes a miss, not only can they shut the bodies own production down if used long term. But usually digestive enzyme formulas contain cellulase and hemicellulase which break down fibers into sugar. Which is something you don't want as fiber is essential for many health reasons such as bile formation, feeding the good bacteria etc.

    Stimulating the release of these enzymes, stomach acid and bile(very important for fats/nuts digestion) with bitter herbs on the back of the tongue is a better idea.

    Betaine HCL again can shut the bodies own production down if used long term, apple cider vinegar is a good choice.


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