Learn the basics of pressing seed oils at home to have a sustainable source of fat for your family. We homesteaders like to be self-sufficient, but unless you raise pigs (for lard) or a dairy cow (to make butter), chances are you aren't producing a lot of fat sources on your homestead.
I didn't realize I could make seed and nut oils at home until I chatted with Bevin Cohen.
In today's podcast (episode #399), we'll be discussing the versatility of different seeds and nuts, whether seed oils are inflammatory and something we shouldn't be eating, how to get started pressing seed oils at home, how much it costs to press seed oils at home, and the best seeds and/or nuts to start growing to make your own seed oils.
This is one jam-packed episode, so be sure to read through the blog post for more information and any links mentioned.
About Bevin Cohen
Bevin and his wife live on a small-acreage homestead in Michigan. He is the author of many books, including The Complete Guide to Seed and Nut Oils: Growing, Foraging and Pressing, as well as The Artisan Herbalist and Saving Our Seeds – The Practice & Philosophy.
Bevin got started pressing seed oils over ten years ago as a way to be able to produce staple foods for his family.
The History of Seed Oils
Pressing oils isn't something new. Olive oil was mentioned in the bible, mustard seeds have been pressed in India for over 4,000 years, and flaxseeds have been pressed in Syria, tracing back over 5,000 years.
The Health of Seed Oils
Seed oils have gotten a bad rap online in the health and wellness world. Bevin shares that while there's a lot of good that comes from the internet, it can also spread a lot of misinformation quickly.
The truth is seed oils that you find at the grocery store that have been mass-produced inherently make them unhealthy for us to consume. In order for these seed oils to be produced, they're chemically extracted using hexane (which is just a couple of molecules away from being gasoline).
They then go through an extensive process of bleaching, deodorizing and degumming to stabilize the oils for the grocery store shelf.
But that doesn't mean that all seed and nut oils are unhealthy! This process is very different than the home seed and nut oil presses that we're discussing today.
Omega 3:6 Ratio
The other health issue is the Omega 3:6 ratio inside these oils. Truth be told, the majority of the oils in our Standard American Diet come from either store-bought oils or in the form of processed foods (containing unhealthy, chemically produced corn oils, soybean oils, etc.).
It's from these foods that we get the scare of inflammation and all the health risks that come with it.
When thinking about home-pressed seed and nut oils and their grocery-store counterparts, it's not comparing apples to apples. They may as well be two completely different foods.
If you don't yet have an oil press and you're still buying oils from the grocery store, I asked Bevin to explain what to look for on the labels of the seed or nut oils we may find.
Cold-pressed or cold-processed means the oil was extracted at a low-temperature threshold, usually below 175°F. This process retains the nutritional qualities of the oil and helps extend the shelf life in a natural way because it's not exposed to heat.
This is the least-profitable way to sell oils, but it's the highest quality oil you will get (and you'll see that reflected in the price). This expeller-pressed method uses pressure to squeeze out the oils from the seeds or nuts.
Oils that have been through the chemical processes of extracting, bleaching, deodorizing and degumming likely won't have any fancy labels touting their special extraction processes (because, quite frankly, they don't want you to know!).
These oils are very profitable for companies and can sit on the grocery store shelf for months and months without going rancid.
How to Press Seed & Nut Oils for a Year
Many of us homesteaders have our mindset on bringing in food for a year at a time. We like to butcher our cows and put up all our cuts of beef for the year. We raise and butcher meat chickens to stock our freezer for the year. Also, we grow a year's worth of food in our gardens and then put up our home-canned tomato sauce for a year. Everything we do is in this “one and done” kind of mindset.
However, when it comes to pressing seed and nut oils, this isn't how our mindset should be… at least not completely.
Bevin recommends purchasing the seeds or nuts in their hull or shell and storing those for as long as is best for the specific seed or nut. Then, you press a week's worth of oil at a time.
Our mindset needs to be more like stocking our pantry with whole grains to grind into flour for our weekly baking session.
The Cost of Pressing Oils at Home
The hand-turned oil press that Bevin recommends costs roughly $200. It's a very simple machine with only a few parts and is very easy to use.
From there, you need to get your seeds and nuts. Whether you're going to forage for them, grow them or buy them. Plus, a food-grade bucket to store the seeds.
There are electric seed presses that you can purchase if you're pressing larger amounts (say for selling at a Farmer's Market). They are more expensive, and after using both the hand-turn and electric press, Bevin prefers the hand-turn press set up so his bicycle can power it. He even has instructions for how to do this in his book.
But for the home-use, using the simple hand crank will be sufficient to press a week's worth of oil at a time.
How Many Seeds Do I Need?
You may be wondering just how many seeds or nuts you'll need in order to press enough for your family for the year.
This will vary from seed to seed and nut to nut. Peanuts, for example, are very oily nuts, containing upwards of 40-45% oil. Bevin shared that with just ten pounds of peanuts, you can easily press a gallon of peanut oil.
If you want to extract even more oil, you can warm the seeds or nuts up before pressing them.
Types of Seeds & Nuts
Different seeds and nuts will all have varying flavor profiles to their oils, and you can change this even further by roasting or toasting the nuts or seeds first. Some of Bevin's favorites are toasted peanut oil and toasted sesame seed oil.
There are so many nuts and seeds that can be pressed into oils at home:
- Hemp Seed – Hemp seeds are 35-40% oil. Hemp seeds are convenient because you can press them in the shell.
- Flax Seed – A very nutritious seed for pressing into an oil. You don't need to shell them before pressing.
- Sunflower Seed – Sunflower seeds are 30-35% oil. This is a great option for growing at home as sunflowers tend to grow well in many climates. This is also an oil high in vitamin E and Bevin likes to use this oil topically. All sunflower seeds can be made into oils, but they will have varying flavor profiles.
- Sesame Seed – If you can grow sesame seeds, this is another great home-option.
- Pumpkin Seed (or other squash) – Another great option for the home gardener. Grow a large crop of pumpkins, turn the flesh into canned pumpkin and scrape out the seeds to dry and press into pumpkin seed oil.
- Peanuts – Did you know the byproduct of making peanut oil is peanut butter? What a great two-fer! And, as mentioned, peanuts are 40-45% oil so your oil yield will be quite high. Peanut oil is great for high-heat cooking.
- Walnuts & Hazelnuts – If you find yourself with a walnut or hazelnut tree on your property, you'll now know exactly what to do with all those nuts!
- Grapeseed Oil – Grapeseed oil is made from seeds leftover after the grapes have been turned into wine.
I asked Bevin, if he could only press one seed into oil which would it be. His recommendation was sunflowers. It's the only seed that can grow to a plant to a seed and back to a plant from the seed, and it grows in most conditions.
Not many people know that black oil sunflower seeds for birds is one of the highest-yielding oils for sunflower seeds! It's one of the best seeds you can run through your oil press.
What About Canola Oil?
Though not a nut or seed, I asked Bevin his take on the health of canola oil. Canola oil is one of the vegetable oils that has the worst rap of them all.
Bevin shared that canola oil isn't a vegetable oil at all! It comes from the rapeseed plant which is a close relative to a radish (it's in the Brassica family).
When rapeseed was first discovered, the oil from the seeds wasn't safe to consume because it was too high in acid. A company in Canada worked to modify the plant until it was safe for consumption. However, they assumed no one would want to purchase an oil called rapeseed oil, so they came up with the name Canola (Made in Canadian, it's an oil and it's low acid).
You can find non-GMO canola seeds today that you could grow at home. However, it does take a lot of space to grow.
The shelf-life of oils will vary depending on the seed or nut. Each seed oil contains different long and short-chain fatty acids, which will affect its shelf stability.
In Bevin's book, he talks about how to store each different type of oil to maximize the shelf-life of the oil.
However, Bevin takes this one step further in sharing that the shelf-life of the oil isn't what's important at all; it's the shelf-life of the seed or nut before it's been pressed.
Drawbacks of Pressing Your Own Oil
As with anything, there will be some drawbacks of pressing your own seed and nut oils. Right off the bat we can list the price of the equipment, the price of the nuts/seeds and the time it will take to process them.
Bevin came up with some additional drawbacks:
- Source the seeds or nuts (growing or purchasing).
- The tiring motion of turning the press for certain seeds (this is more for large-scale productions).
- You will soon know just how much better home-pressed oils taste compared to store-bought. It's like tasting a store-bought tomato vs. a store-bought tomato. There's just no comparison.
Where to Find Bevin
Connect with Bevin on his website Small House Farm, and check him out on social media at the following places:
Verse of the Week: Philippians 4:2 & 8
More Posts You May Enjoy
- 13 Healthy Ingredients to Swap Out Now
- How to Heal Stomach Acid Naturally – My Story Part 1
- How to Find Your Trigger Foods – Part 2 of Healing Your Stomach Naturally
- What Happens to Your Body When You Eat Healthy & Cut Out Sugar
- 7 Signs You Suffer From Thyroid Disease
- Thyroid, Adrenal Glands & Hormone Health
- What is A2 Milk & What are the Benefits?
- Rebekah Rhodes’ Journey with Auto-Immune Disease
- Unplugging for One Year with Rory Feek
Melissa: Hey pioneers. Welcome to episode number 399. Today's episode is one I'm actually very excited about because I have heard very little about this, and that is making and pressing your own seed oils at home. So in today's episode with today's guest, we are going to be discussing, one, the versatility of different types of seeds and nuts that will open up a plethora of different seed oils, the health aspect of seed oils, especially talking about seed oils being inflammatory and something that we shouldn't be consuming, which has been making its round lately. So we're going to be diving into that kind of discovering the truth or uncovering the truth about seed oils and then talking about how to get started doing your own seed oil at home. What does the process look like? How much is it to get started? As well as the best seeds and or nuts to start growing yourself at home to make your own seed oils.
And one of the things that I'm super excited about this topic is, one of the areas that I think for those of us who are homesteading and looking to be very self-sufficient, unless you have animals such as pigs for lard, beef for tallow, or a dairy cow or a dairy goat where you're able to get the cream and make butter or ghee, it's actually pretty hard to get enough fat off of a small homestead to be able to provide for your family without outside supplementation. So coconut oil is something that we buy. I actually buy some different seed oils, avocado oil, grape seed oil, sesame oil, peanut oil, that type of thing. But I didn't even realize, and I'm not sure why, that I could actually make my own seed and nut oils at home and to be able to do so from my own property.
And of course then buying some of those nuts that don't grow here if I still want to use those oils and the benefits that would come from that. So today's guest I'm really excited to introduce you to, and that is Bevin Cohen. Bevin and his wife live on a small acreage homestead in Michigan, and he is also the author of The Complete Guide to Seed and Nut Oils: Growing, Foraging, and Pressing, as well as The Artisan Herbalist and Saving Our Seeds. And you are going to just adore him as a much as I do. So I'm super excited for us to dive into today's episode. Now, we're going to be talking about a lot of things. We're going to have some links to different things, so you can access those and find them at melissaknorris.com/399, because this is episode 399, just the numbers.
Melissaknorris.com/399, and that will get you access to all of the different things that we are talking about. So without further ado, Bevin Cohen, we are welcoming to the podcast. Well, Bevin, welcome to the Pioneering Today podcast.
Bevin: Well, thanks for having me. I'm excited to be here.
Melissa: I am too, because I think this is a topic that is not really talked a lot about within at least my realm, the home setting realm, and I didn't actually even realize that this was a possibility, so I'm super excited. So first off though, tell me why and how you got involved with seed and nut oil production.
Bevin: Sure. We started our oil adventure just over 10 years ago, and here at Small House Farm, a big thing that we try to do is to live a more simple, sustainable lifestyle. And to do that, we try to grow our own food obviously, we have a herbal apothecary, all these things, and in researching ways that we could really access our own staple foods. That's really what it comes down to. When we think of things like beans and grains and that sort of thing. But oil is a staple food. And think about how often we use oil in the kitchen or in the apothecary or whatever it might be, daily. So how could we have sustainable food system here at home or even in our community if we weren't discussing the importance of locally produced oils? So for me, it seemed like a no-brainer. I was like, we got to learn more about this, and I didn't know anybody else doing it.
I couldn't find any information anywhere about it. And so when we jumped into this, we jumped into it blind. It was a lot of trial and error, it was a lot of failure, but all good things in life come from failures in the end, that's how we learn. So inevitably now, just this last year we came out with my book, it's The Complete Guide to Seed and Nut Oils, to help people learn how to process their own seed of nut oils because there was no resource like this when I got started. We were flying blind learning how to do it. And it's actually, believe it or not, an incredibly simple process that anybody can be doing at home. Everybody should be doing at home.
Melissa: Okay, well that gets me excited because I love things that are simple and easy. And you're right, the fat source, because we raise pigs, and so I have my own lard, and then with the beef cows, we have the tallow, but I like to have other oil options. I do love lard and of course butter. Those are the two that I think are probably the most easiest produced, or maybe I shouldn't say easiest, most commonly produced on a homestead, is going to be lard, tallow and butter. So having the availability though to have other ways of creating oil at home, I think it's really exciting. I think a lot of people think that seed and nut oil use is a relatively new thing. And there's some more questions about that that I want to dive into. But first is how have they historically been used? Is this a historical food or is this something we did more in modern agriculture?
Bevin: It's very historic as a matter of fact. Some of the great seeds that we can talk about here, we can talk about olives, which is an oil that we can press right at home. And they've been pressing olive oil for a long time. They even talk about olive oil in the Bible, which that's a long time ago. They have been pressing mustard seeds in India for its oil for about 4,000 years. We could think about flaxseed oil. They've been producing flaxseed oil in the area of the world that we now call Syria for, archeological evidence points back to oil seed production 5,000 years ago. So seed and nut oils is a very ancient thing. Seed and nut oils is almost as old as agriculture itself. It's definitely not a new idea. It is something that people have been doing as long as they've been growing oil seed crops.
Melissa: Okay, good. And so my next question is though, I've seen a lot myself around social media and whatnot in the home setting, in definitely the, for lack of a better term, the healthy living, whole foods living crowd. And that is that seed oils are highly inflammatory, that you should throw all seed oils out. Nobody should be using seed oils. And so I would love to have a conversation around that, because I know a lot of people are like, I shouldn't be using seed oil anymore and are looking to move away for that or for different sources. So let's have that conversation.
Bevin: Absolutely. And I think you hit it right on the head, Melissa, when you said that you've been seeing it around social media. There's a beautiful time that we live in right now where we have the internet, and so we have access to all of this information, all these wonderful things, but at the same time that we have access to all of this information, we have a lot of access to misinformation. And it doesn't take long for something that may be slightly accurate or inaccurate completely, whatever it might be, to spread very quickly all over the place. And I'm sure that most people that share this such thing do it with good intentions. Everybody wants everybody to be healthy and happy and live long prosperous lives. Absolutely. Right? So there's no mal intentions here, but I think it's just confusion.
So what we're going to come into is when we think about seed and nut oils being unhealthy for us, what we're talking about is not really so much the seed or nut itself, but what we're talking about is the way that it is produced, the way that these foods are produced inherently make them unhealthy for us to consume. Okay? So if we were to go to the grocery store and purchase some seed and nut oils, a great majority of the seed and nut oils that you're going to buy at the grocery store are chemically extracted. And I'm sure we're going to delve into this in more depth how these oils are made, but they're chemically extracted, and the chemical that they utilize to extract these oils is hexane. And hexane is about two molecules away from being gasoline. So we're already starting with what I would consider to be a problem.
Then we're going to take these chemically extracted oils and they go through an incredible process of bleaching and deodorizing and degumming, and all of these things to stabilize these oils, which makes them something that's not healthy for you to consume. Okay? That's very different than the seed and nut oils that we can produce at home. It's very different than the seed and nut oils that people have been producing for thousands of years. Very, very different scenario. Now, some oils that we talk about, let's keep going with this. We're going to be concerned about the omega-6 levels that are in some of these oils. We'll say, oh, look out for the omega-6. Too much omega-6 in your diet is not good for you. Absolutely right. That's a fact. Okay? Too much omega-6 is bad for you.
But the small amount of oil that contains omega-6, it also contains omega-9s, omega-3s, that sort thing. But that small amount of oil that you're going to consume, very, very small amount, you're not consuming a lot of it. Where a majority of the omega-6 that's coming into our diet that we need to be concerned with is processed foods. That's the issue. That's where inflammation comes from. If you're eating a bunch of process foods, you're eating corn oil, you're eating soybean oil, you're eating a bunch of canola oil, things like that that have been produced through this chemical extraction, they are bad for you to consume. And that little bit, what do you say, you put a bad apple in a bunch, it makes a bunch of bad apples? There's some bad apples out there.
But for the most part, all of these at-home oils, we can make expeller pressed, cold pressed oils, they're delicious, they're wonderful, they're nutritious, and I highly encourage people to try them.
Melissa: Okay, good. I look at that too when we look at organic homegrown or ancient grains talking about gluten and or wheat versus the big huge crops that have been sprayed with Roundup to dry up and all of that. You could say all wheat is bad and that's not true, but I see where people have been drawn that from. So it feels like this is very much the same type of case.
Bevin: Absolutely right. So people have been pressing oil for a very long time. The way that we press the oil, that's what's changed. The oils haven't changed, our bodies haven't really changed. It's the production methods that have changed, and that's what we need to look out for.
Melissa: Okay. Well, I'm glad that we're having this conversation because it's very, like you said, it's social media. This is going to be released as the podcast, for those of you listening on an app, just listening to it audibly. And then we also have it on YouTube now, and that is a form of social media. And so it's so good and wonderful. I think there's so many wonderful things about the internet, but like you said it, there's always that flip side to the coin and being able to discern what information is actually true and get down to the truth of it, because there's a way, I don't even know that it's so much misinformation, to be honest. I think it's almost misunderstanding of information and just taking that small snippet without the whole, taking it out of context.
Bevin: Certainly. And that's I think how it starts, is there's a little bit of misunderstanding, taking that bit of context, you take that snippet, you share that real quick, and then the only snippet that you've actually shared is seed oils are bad, and then that goes wild, and that's not entirely accurate at all. That's the danger of the internet. But like you said, the Internet's full of awesome stuff. So you got to sort through the things, and that's why just taking the time to learn about stuff from people that are actually doing it, that's one of the best things that we could do in everything, not just seed and nut oils, but everything in life, learning from people that are actually in the field doing the work.
Melissa: Completely agree. We've talked a bit about the refining process, as you said, the hexane and then the bleaching and all of that, which reminds me a lot of Crisco shortening to be honest.
Bevin: Sure, absolutely.
Melissa: And margarine, that type of thing. So the difference between the unrefined and the refined process, and I think we already obviously know the answer, that unrefined, and I'm assuming that's when we see on bottles of labels, when you are buying it from the store, when it says cold processed, I'm assuming that means the unrefined processing. Am I correct in that?
Bevin: Well, yes and no. Yes to the point that a cold pressed oil, what that means is that it's pressed below a certain temperature threshold, usually 175 degrees Fahrenheit. So it's a cold process, which retains the nutritional value and qualities of the oil, and it helps it extend it shelf life in natural way because it's not exposed to that heat. But what we're really looking for is expeller pressed oils. We want oils that are mechanically extracted, and if you look on the back of a label at the grocery store, you will find some that say expeller pressed oils. It's the least profitable way to produce oil, but it's the highest quality oil that you're going to get. So the companies that are doing this, they're going to put it on the label because they want you to know this is the good stuff, that's why it costs more, it's quality stuff. This is mechanical extraction.
So this is utilizing pressure to squeeze those seeds to get the oil out of it. This is the exact same technique that they have used for the very first olives 4,000 years ago when they were pressing mustard seeds. It's just pressure, squeezing these seeds. The machine that we offer through our website is the exact same thing, utilizing pressure to squeeze those seeds to get the oil out, very, very different. When you chemically extract an oil, then it has to go through the series of processes to clean it up and all that sort of thing. But those oils very profitable, incredibly shelf stable. That thing can sit in the grocery store for months and months and months and months and months, and it's not going to change at all, it's going to be the same low quality stuff that it was to begin with.
Melissa: Okay, so we're looking for expeller and cold pressed together if you're buying it from the store. And then shelf file pressed and expelled, what is about the shelf life of that, because we know the other will sit there forever, which we also know is not necessarily a good thing, even though home sitters are big on food storage. What can you expect for a shelf life though on cold pressed and expelled?
Bevin: That's a good question. And that's going to vary from one seed to the next. Each seed's oil is going to be composed of a different long chain, the short chain fatty acids, which is going to affect its shelf stability. So in the book, for each of the oils that we talk about, I talk about the proper temperature to store it at. Some can sit on the counter, some should be cool, dark place, some should be in the refrigerator, whatever, to extend that shelf life to get the most out of it. But what I think is so great about pressing your own oil is the shelf life of the oil itself isn't what really matters. What matters is the shelf life of the seed and nuts. And the seed and nuts are easier to store and they last a lot longer.
You don't want to just press a whole year's worth of oil and try to store a year's worth of oil. That seems counterproductive to me. We might as well just go buy oil at that point. You can press a week's worth or a month's worth of oil at a time, and that doesn't take a very long time to do. It's not a lot of labor and it's easier to store the seeds and nuts than it's to store the oil. So you bring in your yearly harvest and you press as needed, and that way you've always got the freshest, most delicious oil that you can get your hands on.
Melissa: Okay. Which brings me to my next question, I'm very intrigued, I didn't really even realize, to be honest, until you emailed me that you could do this at home. I was just envisioning that would be a very involved process, probably very expensive equipment, maybe needing a whole room with a vat. I don't know, it just never even crossed my mind. So for oils to be pressed in a home kitchen, what is your cost setup looking like? Is this going to be something that's really expensive to get started? And like you said, you could do it really fast and do a week's worth at a time or a month's worth. Walk me through what it looks like to get set up and all those things.
Bevin: Sure. This is a fun question. When we first got started here at the farm, we bought this place just over 10 years ago, and one of the things that I would do is go through the grocery store and see the things that we would buy or that we would use on a regular basis and really analyze, well, how would I just do that on my own? How would I do this on my own? And when you get to that aisle of oils, that was such a mystery. It was like, how does this even happen? What kind of equipment does it take? Is it a big room? Is it vat? Those sort of questions. So when I started to delve into it, I was shocked to see how simple it can be. So on our website we offer the oil press that you need. It comes with the book, you can buy it with or without the book, whatever.
But the oil press you need, and it's $200 and that's all that you need to get started. So you get this simple, it's a hand turn, very simple machine. You can see pictures of it, there's pictures in the book, there's three main parts. It's the main body, the turn crank, and a graduated turn screw. That's all that comes to it. So you have the initial investment of a couple hundred bucks. You got to get the seeds and nuts whether you're going to grow them, purchase them or forge them, whatever it might be. Maybe a bucket to store it in, a funnel, very little investment. What I found, so when we started doing this, I have this inevitable problem where I always try to scale everything up too big, big, big, big, right?
In a former life I used to do marketing for an insurance company and those things that have been programmed into my brain still bigger, bigger, bigger. So the American way, bigger and better. So when we started doing this, we started off with the hand cranked oil press and that sort of thing. And we scaled this thing up into a business and it got way out of hand. We ended up moving into a commercial kitchen. We were selling in co-ops and stuff all over the country. We won an award, one of those good food awards. It was this huge thing. It was this big endeavor. Long story short, I learned that that's not what I wanted to do with my life and so we scaled everything much back, very small again, because I don't want to leave the homestead if I don't have to, so we can just stay here.
But what I found is that the hand cranked machine was perfect for household use, but as we got larger, it became cumbersome, let's say. So there are electric machines that are out there, but what I found worked best, and we walked through you how to do it in the book, is we rigged up the oil press to a bicycle, and now you're having fun. You put the seeds in the press, you hook it up to the bicycle, you put the kid on the bike, you dangle a carrot in front of him and off he goes. And you can press a ton of oil in a very little amount of time, very little effort at all. Most people have a bicycle. It doesn't take a lot to connect these two machines to each other. It's very, very simple stuff. So to answer your initial question, very little investment, very little time, incredibly simple, fun thing to do.
Melissa: Okay. So I'm assuming then, how big is the home press? Because if you can move it to where a bicycle is, I'm assuming that you can easily move it storage wise when you're not in use, is it just going to sit easily on a countertop? Will it store in a cupboard? Walk me through that.
Bevin: It's this big. It's three pieces. It sits on a countertop, you mount it to the countertop. It comes apart into three pieces. You can put it into a drawer if you want. It's very small. You can put it away with any of your kitchen appliances, very little space at all.
Melissa: And then you mentioned hooking it to a bicycle. And so I'm like, does that mean that my arm, if I don't have a hook to a bicycle, is going to wear out before I get any type of amount pressed or just if you want to do a large amount, it's a fun, easy way to do it?
Bevin: It's for a large amount. Now, if you're looking for just household use, you're looking for what you need for the kitchen, whatever, hand, all by itself, easy, no problem at all. The only reason that we ended up upgrading it to a bicycle was because we were pressing gallons upon gallons of oil. We were selling oil at co-ops all over the country. So to up our production, that made it a much easier. But for household use, no, no, no. Just the hand crank is all you need. What I like to recommend to folks though is I think that if we come back to more of a community-minded way of thinking where we can all pool our resources together, and especially when we come to sourcing our seeds and nuts, if we can work together, then we can do more work.
And so in that scenario, if a bunch of us were coming together to press oil, the bicycle makes it fun. We could all take turns riding on the bike, we could press a lot of oil. But again, for household use, hand crank is all you need.
Melissa: So my next question is volumes of nuts and seed to actually getting the oil. So for example, say I was going to do home peanut oil, how many peanuts am I going to need volume wise to get say a cup of oil?
Bevin: This is a good question. Now, and again, that's going to vary from one seed or nut to the next because of the oil content of each seed. But a peanut is a very oily nut. It can be up to 40, 45% oil sometimes. So if we were to say take 10 pounds of peanuts and run them through our oil press, we can easily get up to a gallon of oil, from just simply-
Bevin: Oh yeah, quite a bit. And some of the tricks that we talk about in the book is ways that we can increase our yields. So one thing that's nice to do with nuts like peanuts and things is to warm them up a little bit. I'll put them in the oven or something on a tray. You don't want to cook them or anything, but just warming them up, coaxes those oils out of it a little bit more, which is going to increase your yields. You don't have to do that. And you can load them right through their cold and you'll still get some good yields, but warming them up, that's going to increase your yields, you'll get even more oil out of it. Or what if we toast them a little bit? Then you can get a different flavor profile. You get a toasted peanut oil that's very good.
I like to do that with sesames, toasted sesame oil. Come on. Right? Delicious. So we can do a raw blonde sesame, we can toast it, get a different flavor profiles, so we can make even a few different products from the same harvest. And especially when you're dealing with something like peanuts, sunflower seeds, those things, it doesn't take a lot of seeds and nuts to produce quite a bit of oil.
Melissa: Okay, well that gets me all kinds of excited actually, because I love roasted sesame, and I didn't even think about that part at home. In fact I have a funny story. We ran out of sesame oil, and so normally I order it online through Azure and I just get their expeller cold pressed organic oil. And we ran out this weekend and my husband really wanted to make this salad, and so he went into our little town that's about, we're pretty rural, so about 10 miles away from us there's a one grocery store and then a little gas station. So anyway, so he goes to any place that he could think of in our little tiny town that may sell sesame oil and nobody had any at all.
And so I'm like, okay, well I'll put it on the order, but it'll be like a week. And okay, this, I'm getting quite intrigued and excited by this. Which brings me to my next question though, because you actually just said obviously raw versus roasted, that's going to give you different flavor profiles. But buying say the same thing commercially versus home, is there a big difference in flavor? Is there a deeper flavor depth? Can you tell actually taste wise a big difference?
Bevin: Oh my goodness, yes, you can very much so. You can go to the grocery store and you can buy the highest quality oil they're going to be selling at your grocery store, and you might have to go a little bit farther to get to a grocery store that has these things, being so rural. But you go and get the highest quality. And I'm going to tell you the best case scenario, and we're being so generous with these folks at the grocery store, that thing on that shelf has got to be at least six months old. There's a lot of shipping and movement that happens when you do these oils. You get the best one you can get. You put all your money down, get this thing, you come home, you press your own, you put them next to each other, you'll be able to see a difference in the color, the aroma, the flavor, even from the highest quality commercial oils, simply because the amount of time.
When these oils are freshly pressed, they are at their absolute peak, and it is next to impossible to purchase oils, no matter how high quality the source is, as fresh as the ones that you can press at home. You know what I mean? Oil is fat. A great majority of oil is just fat, right? It's lipids. And it breaks down very quickly. That's just the nature of the beast that we're dealing with here. They start to break down very quickly. The fresher it is, the more flavorful, the more nutritious, everything about it is better. So yes, you can definitely, you can buy, I always like to use sunflower oil as an example. My local co-op has a very nice high quality, expensive sunflower oil, and I can bring it home and set it next to mine. And mine is dark gold compared to pale yellow, right? There's no way around it. Home pressed is the best.
Melissa: Okay, well that gets me all kinds of excited because I know with tomato sauce, like your homegrown tomato, when you make your own tomato sauce and then you taste tomato sauce from the store, there's just no comparison. So we're going to get the same thing with our nut oils. Okay.
Bevin: Absolutely. That's a great comparison. I love it.
Melissa: Okay. So this one is all, I don't know if controversial is the right word, but generally speaking I don't use canola oil anymore or vegetable oil because it's a highly, most likely in from the US anyways, a genetically modified crop. But in your book you gave some interesting information on the crop that is used to make canola oil. So can you give us a synopsis on the history of canola oil and can you press that at home? And if it's not a genetically modified version of the plant to start out with, is there benefits to using canola oil?
Bevin: This is a large question, so there's a lot to unpack here, but I'm glad that you asked it. This is a good one. This is very cool. I'm going to start with this. I love that they call it canola oil or sometimes soybean oil, vegetable oil. That always just cracks me up because canola seeds and soybeans are not vegetables by definition. So that's a hilarious marketing term. And the marketing terms of canola continue. So canola in and of itself comes from Brassica napus, is the species of the plant, more commonly known as rape seed. Okay? It's related to radishes, slightly related to turnips, that sort of thing. It's a Nebraska family. And up until 1970, there was not a rape seed available in the world that was safe for human consumption. It just did not exist. The contents of the acids that were in the oil were not safe for people to eat.
It was very dangerous for our heart, our circulatory system and that sort of thing. It was not from safe crop. Okay? So in the 1970s, through natural breeding techniques, they developed a rape seed variety that had a lower acid content, making it safe for human consumption through traditional breeding techniques. So this is not a GMO crop at this point. Okay? And it became-
Bevin: Right. Absolutely. Hybridization. So they hybridized and created this variety, the low acid variety, it was awesome. We could take this to market, we can sell this. It's very productive. The marketing team, this was developed in Canada, the marketing team realized that they probably weren't going to go to market with a product called rape seed and be very successful.
Melissa: Probably not.
Bevin: Probably not. So they said, well, we got to come up with a better name for it. So it was developed in Canada. It's an oil and it's low acid, so they named it canola, right? It's a made up word. It's a contraction describing Canadian oil, low acid, canola.
Melissa: Wow. Okay.
Bevin: Isn't that something?
Melissa: That is something.
Bevin: Yeah, very cool. So very smart on these guys part. They made up a word, put a label on it, boom, sell it, and it was very successful. It's a very high oil content seed up to 65% oil. So it's a great yield. The byproducts were perfect for feeding cattle, that sort of thing. It was a very profitable product. So then in the 1990s, they developed a genetically modified version of the crop to make it resistant to herbicides, which is a big thing that people do on these large scale farms. They want to be able to spray herbicides everywhere, but not kill the plants that they want to keep. So that's a debate for another day, but I think we can all agree that that's not what we want to have. So they developed these GMO canolas and then now canola has taken over the market. It's everywhere that you go. It's become a big thing.
But if we remember in the 1970s and 80s, canola was a very successful non GMO food product, and there are non GMO varieties of canola that still exist and they're readily available. If you search for them, you can find canola oil made commercially organic, non GMO canola oil. It exists. You can get it. You can also get the seeds and you can also press it at home. And being 65% oil, you can get a lot of yield from your own homegrown canola. Right? Now that's been developed to have the low acid. It's safe for human consumption. These older varieties are not GMO, so it's safe for human consumption, and we can certainly press these at home if we want. They're very similar to a mustard seed. They're very similar. They grow in Sellicks. They're very small seeds. So you have to have a good plot to be able to produce enough to get a decent amount of oil, most certainly.
But it's a great oil. What's nice about canola oil is that it really does well for cooking. It's a high heat type of oil, so you can fry with it, saute with it, all those sorts of things, and it's not going to break it down. It's great topically. You can buy a lot of topical skin products available on the market that have canola oil in them. It's really, really good for your skin. It's emollient, it's moisturizing. So you do find it. And you can make your own topical products right at home. You don't have to purchase them. So canola oil, long story short, if you get the right varieties, they're perfectly fine for you, but you do have to hunt for them because they're not as readily available as these modern GMO refined oils that we don't want to mess with. Right?
Melissa: Okay. That's very fascinating. Actually we just, last month we were doing the modern home setting conference, actually a little bit over a month now, in Idaho. And on our way over there, I live in western Washington, so we were going through eastern Washington and obviously into Idaho to get to the conference. And there was these large fields of just flowering yellow. In fact, I told my husband, I said, I can't tell, it's not broccoli, but it looked like a brassica that had bolted, went to flour, and just massive fields of them, beautiful, just like these seas of this bright yellow. But I was trying to figure out why on earth would a farmer let their crop bolt like that before harvesting it? Because I knew it was a brassica by looking at it as we were just driving past.
And so we got over there and then I asked, Katie, my co-founder, I'm like, I don't understand. Why would all of these farmers let it, what happened to these fields? And she started laughing. She goes, it's canola. And I'm like, I didn't realize it was actually from the Nebraska family. So now that you shared that and the history of it, I'm like, okay, I see why it rose to popularity because my cows love brassicas. In fact, when any of them bolt, that's what I do, is I just pull the plants up and go and take them out to the cows. They can smell it coming in the wheelbarrow and they will just come and mob the wheelbarrow to get at the brassicas, they love them. I never considered though really trying to grow it at home. I'm quite intrigued by it.
Bevin: I think you've opened up another good point here. So your cattle love brassica plants, and one of the reasons that canola became so successful is we were able to produce the oil that people could use, but the byproduct of the oil pressing, so this is known as the seed cake. So the seeds go into the press, the oil comes out, the seed cake comes out the other end. And then nine times out 10, depending on what you're pressing, the seed cake itself is edible and useful. So this is a zero waste process. So the seed cake of canola oil extraction, that's what they were feeding all the cattle. So that's why it became so profitable so quickly, is because it's no waste. You've got the oil for the humans, you've got the seed cake for the cattle, everybody wins, that farmer is making bank, everybody's happy, right?
Melissa: Intriguing on a home. I'm going to have to do now a little research about it. And typically we grow brassicas very well here in the Pacific Northwest in the spring and fall. So anyway, this one's got me intrigued. I'm going to have to do a little more playing around on this one. Do you grow canola? Well, grape seed, I should technically call it. Do you grow it?
Bevin: I do not. I have grown it in patches just for experimenting with and playing with. But I find for me, we grow a lot of plants in small spaces. Our whole property here is three and a half acres, and that's like the woods and the buildings and stuff. So we really have to maximize the space that we use for that sort of thing. We actually lean more heavily into sunflower seeds for our oil production. When we work with other farmers, here in Michigan there's a lot of sunflower seeds. We do pumpkin seeds and that sort of thing, but we have grown canola. But for me, on the amount of space that I have, it just doesn't work for me to do on that type of a scale.
Melissa: Okay. Well, and I love this actually because for small space, I was just going to ask you then, what are the best ones to grow in small spaces? So sunflower and pumpkin seeds. I don't think I've ever seen pumpkin seed oil at the store, but that's one that you can press yourself too.
Bevin: And you got to get some and try it. We offer it on our website. We have little sample kits that we sell of ours, mostly because I just want people to get turned onto it, so then they try to press their own. Pumpkin seed oil is decadent and delicious. It's so good. Now, they have some varieties in Austria, they developed a variety of pumpkin seed that has a seed with no shell, right? It's a naked seed. And that's really what they've leaned into for oil production. And now you can buy a bunch of them. They have a bunch of different varieties of naked. They got one called Godiva, which cracks me up. Right? It's a naked.
Melissa: That's funny. Yeah, that's good.
Bevin: But you don't have to have a naked seed to press it. You can run it with the shell right on. I like to do butternut squash is a favorite of mine. It makes a really nice oil.
Melissa: So you can use the different winners. I was just going to say, does that have to be pumpkin or can you do delicata, butternut, acorn?
Bevin: Any and all, they're all edible, they all have a wonderful oil and you can press any one of them. And those are nice beginner seeds. I like to call those beginner seeds because you don't have to deshell them. So things like squashes and pumpkins, sunflowers, hemp seeds is a very big one. We do a lot of hemp seed oil here. There's organic hemp seed farmer, he's about 20 minutes from me, so we get a lot of organic hemp seed from him. And those are seeds that you can run through the machine with the shell light on them. It doesn't even matter. You can run them, press them, the shell is soft enough that you can still get good yields. You can still use the seed cake afterwards. So those are great beginner seeds.
If we're going to get into something like walnuts, hazelnuts, those sorts of things, those are great oil, most certainly, but now you've added that extra step of having them and process, those types of things.
Melissa: So this brings me to my next question because I have grapes and I have two varieties that are technically a wine grape, niagara, and they're very seedy and they never really get sweet. So sometimes I'll juice them just in order to make homemade grape juice or jelly. But they're not a table eating grape. They're not going to be made into raisins because they're just never sweet. However they're quite seedy. So in order to get grape seed oil, would it extract the liquid and only push out the oil? How would I take my grapes and make grape seed oil from my grapes? What's that process?
Bevin: Sure. So that's a good question. Now, grape seed oil is typically made from the grape seeds leftover from the wine making process.
Melissa: So they've been separated out already?
Bevin: Right. So it's already the waste product, so to speak, of wine production. So they've already been smashed through screens essentially to separate the seeds from the pulp. The trick with grape seeds, and this is totally unfortunate because here in Michigan they grow a lot of wonderful wine grapes, is that the oil content of the grape seed is so low that the only way to get a useful extraction from it is utilizing high amounts of heat. It takes a lot of heat to get the oil out of it, so they're not cold pressed. So you see a lot of people like to use grape seed oil for topical products and that sort of thing, and it's nice for your skin. It's exposed to such a high heat that all of the nutritional content of that oil is completely degraded except for the vitamin E. Everything else is pretty much ruined in that oil.
But it is high in vitamin E, and vitamin E is great for your skin, and that's why people like to use grape seed oil and topical products. It's a light, easily absorbed into your skin oil. It's high in vitamin E. It's wonderful for your skin most certainly. I lean into using sunflower oil topically though, because I can cold press it. It's high in vitamin E, but it's also high in a bunch of other nutrients that I don't degrade through the heat process. So I like to use that topically. But for each of the seed and nut oils, now in the book, what we do is there's 18 I believe, seed and nut oils that I get in depth with. Some history on them, how to grow them, how to process them, how to forge them, pressing, storage, everything in the world that you'd ever want to know.
And then there's, I'm going to say maybe 28 other oils that we get into that are a little more novelty off the wall type of things. Little unexpected, but I just want to make sure everybody knows about that. We give brief passages to just enough to get you started with them so you can learn about them. But we lean into the 18 big ones, and I included grape seed in there, even though it is one that can't quite be cold pressed because it's one that we're all very familiar with.
Melissa: I have a question on that because I actually buy grape seed oil and it says it's cold pressed. Are they lying or there's just a few places that do that?
Bevin: If they are cold pressing grape seed oil at less than 175 degrees, then it's not very profitable for them to do that because the yields are so low. I'm not going to say that anybody's lying because we would never want to believe that to be the case, but it's incredibly unlikely, let's say that.
Melissa: Okay. Because avocado oil and I right now are not the best of friends. I have some food sensitivity issues going on, and so I switched to grape seed oil to make my homemade mayonnaise because in homemade mayonnaise, I don't like the strong flavor of olive oil, and I usually only buy cold pressed expeller olive oil. I was really hoping that I could find a good almost flavored, I know that sounds funny in the context of what we're talking about, but wanting a very neutral flavored oil, I should say, for making homemade mayonnaise. So do you have any good suggestions on that part?
Bevin: Well, we actually do avocado oil here, and you can do avocado oil pretty simply with the machine that we use, but that wouldn't work well for you. I think grape seed oil, like you said, is a very neutral flavored oil. That's really nice. I find blonde sesame oil to be relatively neutral. I don't think it's too overpowering by any means. I think that might make a nice mayonnaise. I'm really curious about this grape oil that you got, because I would say we could label something as cold pressed, but not necessarily have it be expeller pressed. So I would just be curious about the extraction method, because we could chemically extract an oil at low temperatures, and that would still be a cold press oil. I'm curious about that. I'd like to learn more about what you've got.
Melissa: Do you want me to go grab the bottle?
Bevin: If you want to, or you can email me the links or whatever you want to do. I'm always curious to learn new things.
Melissa: Awesome. I'll go ahead and I'll email you the link, so that'll be great. And then maybe we'll have to have you come back on when we have more questions and sleuthing deep diving into it. So for pressing your own oils, the benefits, I'm assuming, because it's basically about the same price, actually a little bit less depending on what model of home pressure canon you're buying. So it's about the same level of investment there as far as equipment and cost. But the benefits I'm assuming is flavor. And I'm also assuming it's going to be cost saving in the long run. Are there any drawbacks though, to pressing your own oil at home other than time? But it sounds like that's a pretty low investment of time. That's not a huge time consumer.
Bevin: Well, sure. Let's make a list of some of the drawbacks. I suppose they exist in everything. Now, one would be having to source the seeds or nuts, would be the first thing that you'd have to do differently. So you would either have to grow them, learn how to grow these crops and process those seeds if you're not already doing that at home, or you're going to have to find a source to purchase them. So that would be a step, I suppose, that you'd have to consider. Another drawback would be if, for a home scale, I guess this isn't a drawback, for me what I found was I wasn't physically able to continue to do this for the scale that we were trying to press oil. So that became a thing. But the bicycle really solved that.
We have a lot of customers that like to purchase the oil press through us, and then once they do that, then they're on my phone, we chat a lot. People will call me with their questions or text me or email me or whatever. And we've had a lot of folks that are older that are interested in pressing their own oils. And they have found that sometimes with some seeds through the press can be a little bit more difficult. Like a flax seed is a very, very hard seed. So some seeds can be a little bit more labor-intensive to run through the press than others. Something soft like a sunflower seed or whatever, easy, anybody could do it. But some are a little bit more difficult to run through the press. So they find that the bicycle that I walk them through, something like that just makes it easier to do.
I think that what it comes down to is that all of the challenges that we might face pressing our own oil, all pay for themselves immediately when we taste that first home pressed oil. We realize immediately, you could be, whoa, it's what a world of difference that you've opened for yourself and now you're pressing your own oil. You are producing your own staple food right at home, completely independently, all on your own. And that's rewarding.
Melissa: That is very rewarding. So for those who are interested in seeds or nuts, that can be, because our audience is all over the US and even internationally as well, is there a few seed or nuts that you feel are widely grown, at least in most areas of the country or most climates that can be made into oil and used in multiple applications? Because I know we've talked a little bit obviously about eating and topical, or maybe a better way to say this is if you could only grow one seed or nut to process into oil, which one would you choose?
Bevin: Okay, if I could only, who's my favorite child? That's a hard one. I would say, and the one I always recommend to folks that are new to it is sunflower seeds. That's where I always start with folks. That's where I started, was with sunflower seeds. It's something that can be grown from seed to seed in basically any climate. It's easy to do, it's easy to process. It's very high yielding, and it's a versatile oil. We can use it in the kitchen, we can use it in the apothecary. I know folks that are working on biodiesel fuels with it, you know what I mean? So there's like a multitude of applications for that one oil. I would lean into sunflower seeds.
It's funny, some people like to purchase bird seed to feed the birds with, and black oil, sunflower seeds for birds is one of the highest yielding sunflower seeds for oil pressing that there is. It's been developed specifically to be high in oil, high in protein, that's what makes it a good bird food. And it is one of the best oils you can run through your oil press. It's going to easiest to get and highest yielding.
Melissa: Okay. That's interesting because actually that piggybacks right into my next question. And that is, typical sunflowers that most people grow in their garden are the very tall, pretty golden big-headed sunflowers. But I also grow some more ornamental varieties that are red and a maroon burgundy, they're a smaller, more like a bush, I guess type sunflower. Are all varieties of sunflower edible?
Bevin: Yes, absolutely. All helianthus are edible. All of those sunflowers. Now what you're going to find is from one to the next is the oil content Is going to vary though. And this happens with all plants. As we breed plants for particular traits, we lose other traits. So as we've bred these different types of sunflowers, some of them don't produce as many seeds, the oil content is lower in the seeds. You can eat all of them, you can press all of them, but they're not all going to produce the most amount of oil. Those big old honking mammoth sunflowers, those are great, those are awesome for oil production. We grow those. They're awesome because one plant produces so much that even if the birds get into it, I'm not losing out too much and I can get a lot of seeds out of there and a lot of oil.
Melissa: Okay, good. Well, some mammoth sunflower seeds are on the ticket for next year to grow. Well, there's so much more I'm sure we could talk about. We've been on here for actually for quite a while. Where's the best place, I know you mentioned your website, so the name of your website or the best place for folks to connect with you to dive deeper into pressing your own nut and seed oils at home?
Bevin: Absolutely. If folks want to connect with me, they can find all of our links to everything that we do, including purchasing their own oil press at smallhousefarm.com.
Melissa: All right, awesome. Well, we will also make sure that that link and links to your book and all the different things are in the blog post that'll accompany this episode as well as in the video description, the show description, all those things. So Bevin, thank you so much for coming on. I feel like we probably just cracked the door on this, that there's so much more to it. So thank you. I'm really excited to get further into this myself.
Bevin: Oh my gosh, Melissa, thank you so much for having me on the show. This was awesome.
Melissa: I hope that you enjoyed that interview as much as I did. And if you have more questions about growing, making, using all the things that have to do with seed and nut oils at home, let me know. If you're watching this on YouTube, let me know in the comment section beneath the video, or if you're listening to this old-fashioned way, let me know in either a review or shoot me an email, because I would love to do a follow-up episode diving deeper into this, answering what questions you may have about seed and nut oil pressing. Now on to our verse of the week. So this week we are in Philippians 4:2 as well as verse eight.
So verse two, this is the amplified translation of the Bible. "I entreat and Euodia and entreat and advise Syntyche to agree and to work in harmony in the Lord. For the rest, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things. Fix your minds on them." Now, I have no idea if I actually pronounce those two women's names correctly in verse two. And there's a lot of good in Philippians, especially chapter four, reading through the whole thing.
But I wanted to pick on these two verses in particular because this is something that the Lord has been working on and I have been working on myself and feeling some conviction on. And so I wanted to just share this with you today. And one is we have two women, and if you read a little bit further in verse three of Philippians where he is asking them and telling the people to help these two women to keep on cooperating for they have been toiling with him and spreading the good news of the gospel, and then he names a few other people and fellow workers. And what I find interesting is of course you have the addict to the two people who are obviously in some type of conflict. They're not getting along, something is going on, but they are sisters in Christ.
So they each have that responsibility to try and get along. And I know there are some personalities, there are some people, there's all kinds of different circumstances and we aren't given the exact circumstances of whatever went down with these two ladies in this particular verse. But I bet that both you and I know for myself that we can think of and immediately some people come to mind that we do not get along with for whatever the reasons may be. It might be we just have a personality conflict. It may that there was something that happened in the past that we're feeling hurt from, they just don't like us. There's all different things, right? But all of us can relate to that and probably have at least a few people in our lives that we don't really care for or have a hard time getting along with, or we just try to avoid them.
And so each person has this where we're supposed to get along, especially within the body of Christ and even to those who aren't Christians, even more so in order to try to get along with them. Now, don't hear what I'm not saying. People love to take this out of context and say, oh, well, you shouldn't stay in an abusive relationship. You shouldn't, blah, blah, blah. That's not what we're talking about here. But each person has that responsibility. And of course we can't make the other person get along with us. We are only responsible for our own actions, our own words, our own thoughts. However we can choose even if that other person doesn't, to try to entreat and to work in harmony as much as we're able to do on our own part, right? In the Lord and for the Lord.
And so that's something that I have to keep reminding myself no matter if I feel someone wronged me, someone was mean to me, whatever it might be, I can only control how I choose to react in that situation. And if they are a fellow Christian, sister or brother in Christ, I am to try to get along with them and work with them in harmony, in the Lord. But the second part, which is verse three, which I didn't actually include in the initial reading but have went through here, is our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ are also, we are to help others when we see a disagreement happening, especially within our church. And I don't just mean the church that you physically go to like your church building, because as we know, it's the whole body of Christ that is the church. It's not just our individual church buildings, even though we say we go to church.
So if you see that happening, we actually have a responsibility to try and help these people to get along and to resolve the conflict and to be able to work in harmony. It's each person and then it's the two people who aren't getting along, and then it's their surrounding brothers and sisters, we all have that responsibility to try and keep the harmony as much as possible. And then verse eight, which is why I flipped to verse eight, is this is true, here it's really talking about our thoughts, right? On what we think about. Because if we are thinking on a troublesome situation, that tends to stir up our emotions.
So in context of thinking back to somebody who I have had been hurt by, we've had disagreements, et cetera, if I continue to replay every grievance and every wrong word that was said or everything that was said that really hurt my feelings or actions that were taken against me, and I continue to just think on those over and over and over again. What am I breeding? Well, I'm breeding the hurt, I'm bringing the anger, all of those things. I'm not thinking on what is pure, what is worthy of reverence, what is honorable, what is sinly, virtue, all of those things. And so when I think about things that have hurt me or are not good and not wholesome, that really changes our thoughts and what we continue to think on and how we view things. And it also changes our emotions in that moment and our physical response.
So when you are thinking about something that's really upset you, oftentimes you're very tense, your muscles tense up, you are holding that really, you're very tight and then you're irritated. And so if things aren't going right in the house, the kids need something extra or something isn't going as smoothly as you would wish because you're already irritated and you're already thinking about those things, it's much easier to lose patience or to snap or to have zero tolerance where normally you would. And so this is something that I have been, as soon as those thoughts start to come in, is immediately trying to redirect them. And sometimes it's just memorizing this verse and it's just stating that verse out loud or even in my head as a thought, going through the verse and then redirecting my thoughts.
And sometimes it feels like I'm doing it every couple minutes, but I think it's really important and obviously because it's in the word of God, but there's a situation that I've been dealing with where this is very applicable and God keeps bringing this back up. And so I keep turning it back over to him and saying, Lord, I forgive this person and I wish that it was a one and done thing, but for me, it's not. As soon as it starts to recall in my memory, I have to continually lay this back down at his feet, pray for them and pray for myself and try and refocus my thoughts. I share this with you because surely I'm not the only one who is dealing with it.
But I also know that when God continually brings something back where it's a verse, you may see different variations of this verse or verses that deal with this, and you see them everywhere. You'll hear them on a podcast like you are here. You'll see someone share them on Facebook or maybe Instagram or you'll see a quote, and it's like you just start to see this mirrored and repeated everywhere you look. It may be if you do like a daily devotional, that that verse will all of a sudden come up. And when that happens, then I know that the Holy Spirit is bringing that forward because it's something that God really wants me to be working on and is convicting me of, hey, you need to deal with this in your life and I'm giving you every opportunity to show you.
And that's why it's brought up to us numerous times and usually a small or concentrated period of time. I don't know, maybe what some of you are going through this as well. And so I just wanted to share that with you in hopes that it will help you get through a situation that you may be dealing with because it is a situation that I am dealing with and trying to continually give it back to the Lord to be able to work in harmony as much as possible as I can on my side. Thank you so much for joining me today and listening to today's episode of the podcast. I can't wait to be back here with you next week. Blessings and Mason jars for now my friends.
Sign up to receive email updates
Enter your name and email address below and I'll send you periodic updates about the podcast.