It seems the public is seeking more healthy foods and the food companies are providing them. Oats and oatmeal are considered one of most nutritious and healthiest foods. There are many health benefits associated with the consumption of oats. Here Adda Bjarnadottir, MS, HealthLine.com, reflects on nutritional benefits of eating oats and oatmeal:
“Oats (Avena sativa) are a whole-grain cereal mainly grown in North America and Europe.
They are a very good source of fiber, especially beta glucan, and are high in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Whole oats are the only food source of avenanthramides, a unique group of antioxidants believed to protect against heart disease.
They’re most commonly rolled or crushed and can be consumed as oatmeal (porridge) or used in baked goods, bread, muesli, and granola.
Whole-grain oats are called oat groats. They are most commonly rolled or crushed into flat flakes and lightly toasted to produce oatmeal.
Quick, or instant, oatmeal is made up of more thinly rolled or cut oats that absorb water much more easily and thus cook faster.
The bran, or fiber-rich outer layer of the grain, is often consumed separately as a cereal, with muesli, or in breads.
This article tells you everything you need to know about oats.
The nutrition facts for 3.5 ounces (100 grams) of raw oats are (5Trusted Source):
- Calories: 389
- Water: 8%
- Protein: 16.9 grams
- Carbs: 66.3 grams
- Sugar: 0 grams
- Fiber: 10.6 grams
- Fat: 6.9 grams
Carbs make up 66% of oats by dry weight.
About 11% of the carbs is fiber, while 85% is starch. Oats are very low in sugar, with only 1% coming from sucrose.
Starch, which is comprised of long chains of glucose molecules, is the largest component of oats.
- Rapidly digested starch (7%). This type is quickly broken down and absorbed as glucose.
- Slowly digested starch (22%). This form is broken down and absorbed more slowly.
- Resistant starch (25%). Resistant starch functions like fiber, escaping digestion and improving gut health by feeding your friendly gut bacteria.
Whole oats pack almost 11% fiber, and porridge contains 1.7% fiber.
The majority of the fiber in oats is soluble, mostly a fiber called beta glucan.
Oats also provide insoluble fibers, including lignin, cellulose, and hemicellulose (12).
Soluble oat beta glucans are unique among fibers, as they can form a gel-like solution at a relatively low concentration.
Oat beta glucans are known to lower cholesterol levels and increase bile acid production. They’re also believed to reduce blood sugar and insulin levels after a carb-rich meal (17, 18Trusted Source, 19Trusted Source, 20).
Daily consumption of beta glucans has been shown to lower cholesterol, especially LDL (bad) cholesterol, and may thus decrease your risk of heart disease (21Trusted Source).
The major protein in oats — at 80% of the total content — is avenalin, which isn’t found in any other grain but is similar to legume proteins.
Vitamins and Minerals
Oats are high in many vitamins and minerals, including:
- Manganese. Typically found in high amounts in whole grains, this trace mineral is important for development, growth, and metabolism (25Trusted Source).
- Phosphorus. This mineral is important for bone health and tissue maintenance (26Trusted Source).
- Copper. An antioxidant mineral often lacking in the Western diet, copper is considered important for heart health (27Trusted Source).
- Vitamin B1. Also known as thiamine, this vitamin is found in many foods, including grains, beans, nuts, and meat.
- Iron. As a component of hemoglobin, a protein responsible for transporting oxygen in the blood, iron is absolutely essential in the human diet.
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Read More … Article Source: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods/oats#vitamins-and-minerals
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