Thursday, February 10, 2011

Thoughtful Thursday - OATS

One of my goals in this Superfoods series is to highlight superfoods that are normal every day foods. I don’t shop at health food stores and I expect that any healthy food that I expect my clients to buy, they can get at their local grocery store. So yes some superfoods like acai and goji berries can have significant health benefits. But if I can’t get it at my local Meijer, I’m not featuring it.

Today’s superfood is as basic as it gets – OLD FASHIONED OATS. Not steel cut oats, not quick oats but OLD FASHIONED OATS. This type of oats are great because they are rich in soluble fiber. Soluble oat fiber has been shown to have significant benefits of to your cardiovascular health (did you know that February is Heart Health month?). Consuming 3 grams of soluble oat fiber each day can lower total cholesterol by 8 to 23 percent.

Oats are also rich in vitamins and minerals such as magnesium, potassium, zinc, copper, manganese, selenium, thiamine and pantothenic acid. Oats are filling and cheap! I know I can get maybe 6 bowls of cereal out of a box of cereal, or for the same price can get 25 bowls of oatmeal out of a canister of old fashioned oats.

Cooked old fashioned oats have also been suggested to increase milk supply in breastfeeding moms. A few studies have shown that mom’s who eat a bowl of cooked old fashioned oats and then pump at work are more likely to pump more on the mornings they eat oatmeal, than the mornings they choose a different breakfast.

There are TONS of ways to add oats to your diet. Of course you can eat oatmeal cookies J But you can also add oats to your yogurt. I pack my breakfast to work most days. I put in ½ cup old fashioned oats, ½ tsp cinnamon, 12 almonds chopped up and a spoonful of raisins. When I get to work, I add water and microwave for 2 -3 minutes. Perfect!

What is your favorite way to eat oats?

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