Since breakfast is so important I have been looking for an easy and healthy thing to eat before I rush off to teach Nia. I don’t always have a chance to eat before my Nia class, but I have been looking to try to change that. Oatmeal is always touted as being one of the best breakfast foods. I do not like oatmeal. I recently found a recipe for granola that is basically just oats and I started to wonder if oats cooked that way are as good as oatmeal. Here are some nutritional facts on oats:
The fiber contained in oats is known in studies to have a cholesterol lowering effect. Since high cholesterol is associated with buildup of plaque in the blood vessel walls the lowering of cholesterol helps with heart disease. In addition to oats special fiber that helps lower cholesterol scientists have also found an antioxidant compound in oats that help lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. Studies have also shown that postmenopausal women can greatly benefit from eating oats at least six times a week. The study showed that the antioxidant slowed the progression of narrowing the arteries. In addition oats have been shown to improve or enhance the body’s immune system’s response to infection. They were mentioned in my post Some Foods Can Boost Your Immune System. Oats also help stabilize blood sugar.
You have probably heard a lot of talk about flora in the intestinal track and how important it is to keep the guts healthy. Oats also contain phytochemical the gets converted to friendly flora and a healthy gut contributes to a healthy digestive system which helps the body in so many ways. If your digestive system is healthy it allows you to absorb the nutrients you need and eliminates the stuff you don’t need.
Oats are also gluten-free which is very helpful since it is a whole-grain and it can be used as a serial and it can also be used ground as a flour. So it can be a very healthy substitute for gluten containing cereals and flours.
The oats I bought show that 1/2 cup of uncooked oats have:
Total Fat 3.5 g
Cholesterol 0 mg
Sodium 0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 32 g
Dietary Fiber 5 g
Protein 7 g
Of the Daily Values there is 2% calcuim and 15% iron.
A lot of fiber and a lot of protein and the benefits of a whole grain. I am thinking that I might even just like the oats toasted and eaten as a cereal without adding all the extra stuff as called for in the granola recipe. Since I have this whole bag I might just try that. Of course I will also have to use some of this bag for the Banana Oatmeal Walnut Cookies.
Oats do contain tryptophan so if you get sleepy after eating them it could be more than just because you might think of oatmeal as a comfort food.
With the large amount of fiber and protein this is a great food to start the day with, both fiber and protein help keep you full. So you can start the day off energized and satisfied. Oats are an incredible whole grain!
Are you including this whole grain as part of your breakfast?