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Monday, 26 January 2015

Health benefits of Oatmeal

For many people around the world, both children and adults alike, oatmeal has nothing to fascinate them, except of course for those who really know. My cousin happens to be one of those who literally abhor the presence of this otherwise wholesome rich breakfast cereal. But like I usually say to people like these – what is most important is not what your taste buds prefer but rather, what your stomach requires. This is the story of good old oats.

Unknown to so many, oatmeal is one of the most important and nutritious breakfast cereals that are available to us. It is the same issue that everybody has with whole wheat bread for instance. Oatmeal might not be very tasty on its own, but it can be garnished or ‘enriched’ when you complement it with other food sources or condiments like fruits, honey, brown sugar, ‘skimmed’ milk, etc. 

Oats Cereal

The followings however are the well known health benefits of consuming oatmeal which you should never neglect:

A Rich Source of Fibre: The fact is that eating a delicious meal of oats in the morning is one of the best ways to say ‘good morning to your stomach’. This is because oats is one of the richest sources of fibre and breakfast cereal nutrients in preparation for a proper and healthy digestive system. It is a typical example of the highly needed whole grain foods that your body deserves.

Prevention of Obesity and Weight Gain: Oatmeal will help you maintain a reasonable body weight and help you lose unwanted weight because it is rich in natural fibre. What this does is that this food will enable you get really full quickly and for a good length of time thereby reducing hunger or in between meals such as snacks; also, because of its high fibre content, oats will help you to have a very healthy bowel movement because of the presence of bulk.

Oats Lowers Cholesterol: Oatmeal is one of the meals you need to take if you want to lower your cholesterol numbers; oats is capable of lowering your cholesterol i.e. the ‘bad cholesterol’ or LDL. This is because this food contains a good amount of soluble fibre - the type we find in apples, pears, prunes, and barley.

It Builds Immune System: Oatmeal contains antioxidants, which means that it is able to help ward off serious infections by dealing with the free radicals that cause debilitating bodily harms. This is in addition to its ability to stave off or fight against heart disease because oats contain a very important fibre called beta-glucan fibre.

Reduction of Blood Sugar: Because oats contain a good amount of natural fibre being a whole grain, it is able to reduce your risk of contracting diabetes. In addition it contains vital minerals such as magnesium and chromium, iron and the B Vitamins that are very important for regulating and maintaining a balanced blood sugar. 

It diminishes the risk of High Blood Pressure: Oats is a healthy diet that is naturally equipped to stabilise and regulate blood pressure. As a result it is able to protect you from the possibility of contracting any of the cardiovascular diseases like high blood pressure, and even cancer.

Oats prevents the occurrence of atherosclerosis: Oatmeal has the ability to prevent the thickening or hardening of the arterial walls. This is so because it contains high natural fibres and powerful antioxidants that fight against the production of molecules that help to build monocytes leading to the accumulation of plaques on the walls of the arteries.

Oats farm

Controls and Regulates Blood Sugar: You have to note carefully that if you want to get the best of benefits from your oatmeal, you have to go for ‘whole grain oats’ and not the prepackaged oats that is loaded with sodium or, and sugar with little whole grain fibre to go with it.

Lastly, enjoy your oatmeal every morning; enrich it also by mixing it with a good complement such as fruits, skimmed milk, yoghourt, or fresh fruit juice. You could as well blend in any of those or throw in some nuts while it is cooking, for special flavour and richness. When mixed with any rich source of Vitamin C, oats will go a long way to ensuring the ultimate health of your heart, so it pays you to have some citrus fruits or a glass of fresh orange juice for instance, by your delicious bowl of oats. 

Do have a very pleasant morning with a hot bowl of oats.

By Morgan Nwanguma

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