Oatmeal – A great diet food

oatmealOATS- they are rather new in the Indian market but you hear about them almost invariably these days when it comes to healthy eating. How are they different from rest of the cereals we have been eating for years ?

During the past 20 years there has been a dramatic increase in obesity, diabetes and other lifestyle disorders. Foods high in fibre go a long way in filling that void.

Reduction in cholesterol levels :

Cholesterol levels are lowered by eating oats. The important point here is LDL (low-density lipoprotein, or ‘bad’ cholesterol) is reduced without reducing levels of HDL (high-density, lipoprotein, or ‘good’ cholesterol).

Save your Heart :

Separate reviews have also discovered that eating oatmeal can reduce your chances of getting high blood pressure, type II diabetes and gaining weight. Oatmeal also contains simple unique compounds that may protect against premature hardening of the arteries, or atherosclerosis.

Obesity:

Oats as one may say are an excellent source of FIBRE. A serving of oats ( half a cup, cooked) has nearly 4 grams of souble fibre. This fibre helps lower blood LDL cholesterol, the so-called “Bad” cholesterol and generally boost cardiovascular health, lowering high blood pressure. It causes stomach emptying making you feel full longer which helps with weight loss. New research suggests that children between ages 2-18 years old who have a constant intake of oatmeal lowered their risk of obesity. The research found that the children who ate oatmeal were 50% less likely to become overweight, when compared to those children that did not eat it. Oats absorb the extra fat & flush it out of the system. That is why they cure constipation because of the high soluble fibre & assist in regulating gastro-intestinal functions.

Body builiding:

Full of protein and minerals, oats help building strong bones, teeth and connective tissue and for boosting energy.

Diabetes:

Oat fibre helps control blood sugar delaying gastric emptying and retarding the entry of glucose in the bloodstream.

Stress :

Buy and eat oats if you’re feeling sad. It’s a natural anti-depressant – will make you feel calmer and normally used to treat depression, anxiety and nervous disorder. Unrefined oatmeal can be eaten on regular basis to reduce stress while cooked oats will relieve fatigue.

In an age of fast & processed food, mothers have to be very innovative in cooking up new dishes. Oats have the flexibility not only because of its variety, but also because it is half cooked. It can easily used to make quick pastas, muffins, crossiants. Moreover, since it substitutes for maida, it is a healthy option any day. It can act as a thickening agent for soups & gravies instead of maida & replace wheat flour in Indian cooking.

Oatmeal goes well with fruits and vegetables :

Oatmeal makes a great conduit for fruit. Besides oatmeal, fruit is also great for breakfast. And oatmeal just happens to taste great with fruit mixed in ! Flavor your oatmeal with banana for a great breakfast where you also get potent antioxidants and nutrients from the fruit.

You can also make Oatmeal plus vegetables as thickened vegetable Soup. Just add boiled vegetables such as carrot, beans etc., in oatmeal cooked in boiled water. Garnish if you want and it would be a great dish for breakfast with no fat in it.

So what are you waiting for, go have some oatmeal!

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