Health trends come and go all the time, and many foods fall out of favor after a while. However, oatmeal has kept its reputation as one of the healthiest breakfasts for generations.
It’s a whole-grain powerhouse which provides incredible nutrition and hearty flavor to your first meal.
It may look plain, but oatmeal is very healthy. In fact, oats have been used for their therapeutic benefits for centuries. Some of their health benefits include treating digestive problems, soothing nerves, and improving the skin health.
However, avoid it if you’re allergic to oats.
39 grams (0.25 cup) of oats provide 96% of the recommended daily dosage of manganese, 29% of phosphorus, 27% of copper, 26% of biotin, 25% of vitamin B1, 17% of magnesium, and 17% of fiber. It has a low glycemic index, and this amount has 152 calories.
Moreover, it is also high in powerful antioxidants including tocotrienols, vitamin E, selenium, phytic acid, and phenolic acid.
What Happens to Your Body If You Eat Oatmeal Every Day
Oatmeal contains dietary fiber which makes you feel full for longer. So, you’ll eat less frequently as you won’t be hungry as you used to be. That’s why oatmeal helps prevent weight gain and obesity.
Besides helping you to prevent adding extra pounds, oatmeal boosts the energy levels and keeps them high throughout the day. What’s more, it has a low glycemic impact, so it won’t cause drastic ups and down in your blood glucose levels.
This is really helpful for people with diabetes since proper blood glucose control regulates the secretion of insulin in the body.
Having low blood glucose levels can often cause food cravings. In order to reduce these cravings, you should eat foods with low glycemic impact, such as oatmeal. This, in turn, will aid the weight loss process.
Consuming oatmeal for breakfast will decrease your daily count of calories by over 80 percent. Since it has a low glycemic impact, it will prevent you from overeating high-calorie foods throughout the day.
In other words, oatmeal succeeds to do what other low-fat and low-calorie foods fail to do – it keeps you full for longer, thus preventing you from eating too much throughout the day. So, by eating less, you will help lose weight more quickly.
Additional Health Benefits of Oatmeal
Oatmeal is excellent for weight loss, but it provides many more health benefits. Some of them are the following:
- Lowers the risk of heart attack and heart disease
- Reduces LDL cholesterol levels (by up to 7%)
- Reduces the risk of type 2 diabetes and controls the blood glucose levels
- Strengthens the immune system
- Eases constipation
- Helps prevent childhood asthma
- Protects against breast cancer
- Increases the life expectancy
- Ideal for those with celiac disease or another form of gluten sensitivity
Types of Processed Oats
Here’s what you should know about the different types of processed oats:
- Steel-cut oats – cut up oat kernels which take 20 minutes to cook. They are a bit chewy with a dense
- Oat groats – whole kernel, no flakes, cuts, or grinding. Oat groats take a longer time to cook, 50-60 minutes after boiling the water.
- Instant oats – steamed and flaked oat groats
- Rolled oats (old-fashioned oats) – steamed oat groats, rolled into thicker flakes than instant oats
- Oat brans – the cereal grain’s hard outer layer
Even though you can use each of these types of oatmeal to make excellent breakfast, the steel-cut oats are the healthiest variety. In fact, the less the oats are processed, the healthier they are.
How to Choose and Eat
Buy oats in small quantity as this grain can go rancid quicker than other grains. If you buy them in a packaged container or bulk, make sure there’s no moisture. When buying oatmeal, check the ingredients to ensure it doesn’t contain sugar, salt, or other additives.
You can eat your oatmeal in many ways, and not just in the old-fashioned way. For example, add it to your yogurt, shakes, smoothies, or use it in pancakes, cookies, quick-breads, and muffins.
It can replace any grain in any meal, as well flours in sweet treats and bread.
As you can see, there are many ways you can add oatmeal to your diet. Consuming it often will improve your health and body in many ways, making you slimmer and healthier.