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a tour of the BULK FOODS ROOM in a health food store

By Robyn Openshaw, MSW | Apr 19, 2011

Lots of people walk into a health food store and have no clue what to buy!

So I’ve done a bunch of videos showing some of my favorite things in a

typical natural foods store.

Today here’s my video about the BULK FOODS ROOM! Feel free to ask your

questions here and I’ll try to answer.

Posted in: Videos, Whole Food

33 thoughts on “a tour of the BULK FOODS ROOM in a health food store”

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  1. LOVE this Robyn! I’m going to forward this to a few friends!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hi Robyn: Are chia seeds a good thing to sprout? And buckwheat can’t be sprouted, right? Thanks, Debbie

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      Chia will be gluey when sprouted, but yes, you can and should–especially as an egg replacer, it should be soaked in water. (3 Tbsp water with 1 Tbsp chia is a great egg replacer.) And buckwheat CAN be sprouted. I have a sprouted buckwheat pancake recipe I love in Ch. 10 of 12 Steps to Whole Foods.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Robyn is there much difference in nutritional value between the different quinoa grains? Would red quinoa have more antioxidants?

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      Anna, just different nutritionally, somewhat, with a slightly different flavor. I like to mix it up and use different types–I have a great red quinoa recipe in 12 Steps too.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Hi Robyn,

    This is a great post ! I do have a question though. Anna also asked you about this, however your answer was confusing to me. Is there a difference nutritionally between the red quinoa and the other quinoa or is it merely a difference in color ? Is one any better than the other ? I’m very new to all this and decided to try quinoa … I thought is was great ! I love rice so it seems to be a natural replacement. Any other information about quinoa you can tell us ? Different recipes or ways to use it perhaps ? I could use all the help I can get … New to the whole cooking thing also … 🙂

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      Robert, they are not the same nutritionally, but they’re close. Slightly different in protein and the various minerals/vitamins….red is a bit superior to the white…so just use them both for variety, color, taste difference, and to keep variety in your life. Lots of info about quinoa in 12 Steps to Whole Foods. I love it because it’s high in protein, no gluten, cooks quickly, tastes great.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Hi Robyn,

    I received my 12-Steps kit last week. Of course, I’m overwhelming myself with all that awesome information. I have eaten “whole” for over 30 years, and want to crank up the nutrition with raw foods. My hubby is on board, too. Yeah! We love what you do and are in the process of rethinking our storage, both dry and fresh. We have two big freezers, (we grow org. veg. and fruit, been square foot gardening for years ; ) Here’s my question for today: Must I use my valuable freezer space for ALL my grains and seeds, long term, of course. I always have. Now I am wondering if I need to, listening to your bulk foods video. Do you have any printed materials on how you store all your foods? On your CD you mentioned your cold bin. Is this something you had built in your kitchen?

    Thanks for your time, and caring about sharing this message that needs to be shouted from the mountain tops!

    Getting Healthier By The Day, Pam

  6. Anonymous says:

    I recently tried quinoa for the first time, and while I liked it very much, it seems like it didn’t like me. I got an irritated throat and a dry cough that didn’t go away for hours. I’m wondering if it’s because I didn’t cook it long enough, or is that an allergy/sensitivity issue – has anyone else out there had this reaction?

  7. Anonymous says:

    mgm, did you rinse it? You NEED to rinse quinoa first before using! Quinoa has a coating of saponin (a mild toxin) and your symptoms sound like the effects caused by not rinsing.

  8. Anonymous says:

    I heard you say on the video that people with gluten intolerances sometimes do well with spelt. Just to be clear, Spelt DOES contain gluten and should not be consumend by a person with a gluten issue like Celiacs, it could be very dangerous.

    SPELT [Triticum spelta] (WHEAT, dinkle, farro, dinkel) Ancient cereal grain with a mellow nutty flavor. “Spelt Is Wheat”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spelt

    Heather

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      Celiacs should stay away from spelt. Celiacs are the worst on the gluten intolerance spectrum. Some with milder gluten issues do okay with it, especially when you ferment flours/grains before using as I teach in Ch. 9 of 12 Steps–but that is correct.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Robyn, can you recommend a good way to sprout chia seeds? Sounds difficult.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Robyn,

    I love your website, watching your videos etc…. I want your 12 step program but with my husband not working and this economy there is no way! Do you ever do contests, raffles or something that you have a chance to win your program?

    Thanks for another great video!

    Sue

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      Hi Sue, I haven’t done that except for GreenSmoothieGirl Makeover, though we do have a $39.95 option to participate (PDF download of the manual). Sorry about the employment challenges. 🙁

  11. Anonymous says:

    Watched your tour video. It was a fun watch. Thanks fo making it. But I heard you say oat groats could be sprouted. I don’t really think so because they’re sold as stabilized, which I believe means they’re lightly heat steamed to prevent them from going rancid. Stabilized grains don’t sprout. When you sprout your oat groats, do you see a sprout on the end of them? And just so people know, buckwheat is neither a wheat or a grain. It’s a seed and the plant is related to wild rhubarb. It’s very nutritious and contains no gluten. When I cook it, I have to remember to add more than 3 times as much water, otherwise it ends up undercooked. Buckwheat sure does absorb a lot of water. Oh, and some people say buckwheat sprout greens are toxic. But then so are rhubarb leaves.

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      True that buckwheat isn’t technically a grain–you use it like one, though, so most people don’t care. I soak oat groats and see them actually grow sprouted tails, yes.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I am all for your method of choosing to buy organic vs conventional EXCEPT when it comes to corn or soy. I would always recommend buying these organic because these are most often genetically modified if they are conventional.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Why would anybody want to give up animal products? Why not just add to the diet?

  14. Anonymous says:

    Could you answer Pam’s question from April 20th? I would also like to know about storage.

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      What was Pam’s question?

  15. Anonymous says:

    Suggesting that people not even think about eating salt is a dangerous suggestion. Our bodies need sea salt for the minerals as well as the

    iodine that the thyroid desperately needs to function.

  16. Anonymous says:

    I get your e-mails all the time and found this one to be so helpful as far as the bulk items. I’m still working on transitioning over and plan on getting your book. Thank you so much for all the info.

  17. Anonymous says:

    What do you think of freeze dried foods?

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      They’re okay for long-term storage although I find I just don’t use or like them much. Sometimes they are preserved with sulfur dioxin or whatever, not a fan of that.

  18. Like Lisa, I am also very interested in your solutions for long term storage of seeds/nuts, and other whole foods, which Pam asked so well in her April 20th post. I’ll copy and include it here. Thanks so much!

    Pam wrote:

    We love what you do and are in the process of rethinking our storage, both dry and fresh. We have two big freezers, (we grow org. veg. and fruit, been square foot gardening for years ; ) Here’s my question for today: Must I use my valuable freezer space for ALL my grains and seeds, long term, of course. I always have. Now I am wondering if I need to, listening to your bulk foods video. Do you have any printed materials on how you store all your foods? On your CD you mentioned your cold bin. Is this something you had built in your kitchen?

    Thanks for your time, and caring about sharing this message that needs to be shouted from the mountain tops!

    Getting Healthier By The Day, Pam

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      Pam, Vivian, I am working on a food storage course. However, grains store long-term easily (jars, buckets, or double Ziploc gallon freezer bags, so I wouldn’t use freezer space for that, or legumes. I would freeze seeds and nuts, however, as they have fats that go rancid in 6 months or so at room temp. I have cold storage in my basement. You can dig a cold shelter against your home’s concrete foundation if you want (Eliot Coleman’s Four Season Harvest).

  19. Anonymous says:

    Just a quick reply to David’s comment of April 24th: David if you are unsure about meat or the value of animal protein or why so many people are shying away from it, may I recommend the book or audio book entitled “The China Study” by T. Colin Campbell. This is one book that is based on actual science, not just another health writer’s opinion. Robyn does a nice book report on it in her 12-steps program. The evidence presented in this book is to an eater like reading is to a college grad. Fundamental. Regardless of your taste buds or politics, this book is a “must read.” Good luck.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Why do you always suggest dehydrating almonds and other things? I’ve looked and looked in your 12 Steps materials and your videos and can find nothing that instructs “why” to dehydrate. I have truly “raw” almonds that I soak to sprout, but do not dehydrate them because I do not have a dehydrator (yet). Is it just to prolong their shelf life?

    1. Robyn Openshaw, MSW says:

      Sherre, yes, it’s to prolong shelf life (preserve) and also to make them crunchy.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Excellent and educational….thanks I can go to my health foods co-op with a new set of eyes towards purchasing in the bulk food section.

  22. Anonymous says:

    Hello,

    I grow buckwheat sprouts in trays and outside in my garden in springtime. They would be excellent added to your smoothies . High in Vit C and a bioflavnoid called rutin. Also would thicken the smoothie.

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