Quaker White Oats
- 500 GM
- Oats are a whole-grain food, known scientifically as Avena sativa.
Oat groats, the most intact and whole form of oats, take a long time to cook. For this reason, most people prefer rolled, crushed or steel-cut oats.
Instant (quick) oats are the most highly processed variety. While they take the shortest time to cook, the texture may be mushy.
Oats are commonly eaten for breakfast as oatmeal, which is made by boiling oats in water or milk. Oatmeal is often referred to as porridge.
They're also often included in muffins, granola bars, cookies and other baked goods.
Oatmeal Nutrient Profile
Most oatmeal cooks in a flash and provides you with lasting energy to start your day. That’s because a cup of cooked oatmeal supplies 6 grams of protein and 4 grams of fiber – two nutrients associated with satiety. Feeling full can keep you on track in terms of your weight-loss goals, so you won’t get hungry mid-morning and hurry to the pastry cart at work. Fiber also helps keep your digestive track functioning smoothly. Your cup of oatmeal contains 166 calories before any fruit or sweetener is added.
A cup of oatmeal also provides B vitamins, which help your body turn food into energy, and generous amounts of minerals like iron, magnesium and zinc. The iron in a serving meets 11 percent of an adult woman’s daily needs and 25 percent of a man’s. Iron carries oxygen through your bloodstream to all your cells. Magnesium works with calcium to build strong bones, while zinc supports the healthy function of your senses of taste and smell.
Oatmeal for Heart Health
Oatmeal is especially rich in a type of fiber called beta-glucan. A review of studies on the beta-glucan in oats, published in 2011 in Nutrition Reviews, looked at over 13 years of research and found a consistent association between beta-glucan and the lowering of cholesterol levels. The review authors stated that daily consumption of at least 3 grams of beta-glucan from oats appears to reduce total cholesterol and “bad” cholesterol, or LDL, by as much as 5 to 10 percent.
Eating oatmeal may have another, more surprising benefit. A review published in Phytotherapy Research in 2013 found that consuming cereals high in beta-glucans, especially oatmeal, supports skin health. Beta-glucan possesses anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that may help combat the effects of aging on skin, like wrinkles and dryness. The authors suggested the need for more research to determine the efficacy of including beta-glucans in cosmetic products, too.
Ways to Eat Oatmeal
Experiment with different kinds of oatmeal -- old-fashioned, steel-cut, quick-cooking or instant -- to find one that suits your taste and schedule, but steer clear of those with artificial flavoring and added sugar. Flavor and sweeten your oatmeal naturally with berries or sliced banana, a drizzle of maple syrup and a sprinkle of cinnamon or a dash of vanilla. For more protein, add a tablespoon of almond butter or a splash of dairy or soy milk. To get a boost of heart-healthy fats, stir in a tablespoon of ground flaxseed or chopped walnuts. Remember, though, to figure in the calories that mix-ins add to your bowl.