Whole grains are better for us than refined grains, and oatmeal is the health powerhouse among whole grains. It’s one of the most nutrient-dense foods around.
The health benefits of oatmeal include:
- Oats are higher in protein than most grains, and they contain lots of fiber, too. Half a cup of rolled oats gives you 13 grams of protein and 8 grams of fiber.
- Oats are a top source of vitamins, minerals and antioxidant plant compounds, including magnesium, iron, and B vitamins.
- The soluble fiber in oats can reduce bad cholesterol, high blood pressure, and insulin response.
- Oats act like a scrub brush in your digestive system. The insoluble fiber in oats helps encourage regularity and good gut health.
- Several large-scale studies have shown that regularly eating oats reduces the risk of heart disease.
How can you get oats into your day?
Eating oatmeal for breakfast is one of the easiest and most popular ways to increase oat consumption. If you currently eat sugary instant oatmeal, try old fashioned oats — they’re quick and easy to prepare.
Bring one cup of water to a boil, stir in 2/3 cup of old fashioned rolled oats, cover the pan, and turn the heat down to low. In 10 minutes, the water will be absorbed and your oatmeal will be ready to eat. Add fruit either before or after cooking, if you like.
Healthy and tasty oatmeal recipes
You can prepare this the night before and put it in the oven while you get ready in the morning.
1 c. water
2/3 c. rolled oats
2 eggs, separated
1 apple, finely diced
1 c. blueberries
Heat water to boiling. Stir in oats, cover pan, and turn heat to low. Cook for 10 minutes, till water is absorbed. Transfer oats to mixing bowl.
Beat egg whites to stiff peaks. Fold egg whites into oats gently. Stir in chopped apples and berries.
Spread into a buttered baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
This is a satisfying, classic cookie. We replaced some of the flour with coconut flour to bump up the protein and fiber content as well as the flavor, and we’ve added vitamin A-rich dried apricots for flavor and fiber.
Apricot Coconut Cookies
1 c. butter
3/4 c. brown sugar
1/2 c. white sugar
1 t. vanilla extract
1 c. self-rising flour
1/2 c. coconut flour
3 c. rolled oats
1/2 c.dried apricots, snipped into strips with scissors
1/2 c. shredded coconut
Cream butter and sugars. Beat in egg and vanilla. Stir in flours, oats, apricots, and coconut.
Drop onto a greased cookie sheet with cookie scoop or tablespoon. Bake 8 minutes at 350 degrees.