a plant that is a type of grass, or its grain used in baking and cooking or to feed animals:
- A Field Of Oats
- Rolled Oats (= Oats That Have Been Pressed Flat)
- These Biscuits Contain Oats.
BENEFITS OF EATING OATS ON BLOOD SUGARS
Eating oats can spread the rise in blood sugars over a longer time period. Control of blood glucose and insulin levels is essential in preventing many of the complications associated with diabetes. Oat beta-glucan slows the rise in blood glucose levels following a meal and delays its decline to pre-meal levels. Here’s how it works. As the beta-glucan in the soluble fiber of oats is digested, it forms a gel, which causes the viscosity of the contents of the stomach and small intestine to be increased. This in turn slows down digestion and prolongs the absorption of carbohydrates into the bloodstream. This means dramatic changes in blood sugar levels are avoided. Other sources of soluble fiber are grains, fresh fuit and vegetables.
BENEFITS OF EATING OATS ON ANTI CANCER
Oats, like other grains and vegetables, contain hundreds of phytochemicals (plant chemicals). Many phytochemicals are thought to reduce a person’s risk of getting cancer. Phytoestrogen compounds, called lignans, in oats have been linked to decreased risk of hormone-related diseases such as breast cancer. Most of the research has been focused on breast cancer, but similar effects are expected on other hormone-related cancers such as prostate, endometrium and ovarian cancer. International research has shown that women with a higher intake of dietary fibre have lower circulating oestrogen levels, a factor associated with a lower risk of breast cancer. The insoluble fibers in oats are also thought to reduce carcinogens in the gastrointestinal tract.
BENEFITS OF EATING OATS ON BLOOD PRESSURE
A daily serving of whole oats rich in soluble fibre can reduce hypertension, or high blood pressure, and so reduce the need for anti-hypertensive medication. Nearly 1 in 3 American adults has high blood pressure. It usually has no symptoms, but can cause serious problems with the heart and
blood vessels, leading to other complications.
BENEFITS OF EATING OATS ON BOWEL FUNCTION
Oats have a highfiber content. Fiber is necessary in keeping bowel movements regular. Oats are high in both soluble and insoluble fiber. Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in water. It is spongy and absorbs many times its own weight of liquid. It makes stools heavier and speeds their passage through the gut, relieving constipation.
BENEFITS OF EATING OATS ON WEIGHT CONTROL
As the soluble fiber of oats is digested, it forms a gel, which causes the viscosity of the contents of the stomach and small intestine to be increased. The gel delays 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.
BENEFITS OF EATING OATS ON ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE
Oats, like other cereal grains, are valued primarily as a source of carbohydrates which provide calories for energy needs. Oats have been shown in scientific studies to favorably alter metabolism and enhance performance when ingested 45 minutes to 1 hour before exercise of moderate intensity. This website’s author swears by them!
- It’s great for your gut. In a new supplement published in the British Journal of Nutrition, researchers concluded that the beta-glucan, resistant starch, and the unique polyphenols, avenanthramides, present in oats may boost the beneficial bacteria, Bifidobacteria, in the lower GI tract.A review of 29 studies concluded that oats and oat bran might provide benefits in some cases of bowel disease and constipation.
- It’s pretty much the perfect breakfast food. Several studies suggest that eating oats may help reduce hunger and increase feelings of fullness. In fact, a recent study from the Nutrition Journal found that subjects who ate 217.5-calorie breakfasts of oatmeal with nonfat milk reported less hunger, increased fullness and a reduced desire to eat more, compared to subjects given an equal calorie serving of ready-to-eat, oat-based cereal with nonfat milk. In fact, oatmeal rated #1 among breakfast foods and #3 overall in a “Satiety Index” created by Australian researchers seeking to find foods that make people feel full and satisfied the longest.
- It’ll keep your cholesterol in check. A review of the most recent and compelling studies on oat and oat bran and cardiovascular disease risk factors concluded that oats and oat bran lower total cholesterol and LDL (bad cholesterol) by respectively 2-19 percent and 4-23 percent; the effects are particularly prominent among people with high cholesterol levels.
REGULAR OATS RISKS:
Commercially produced and packaged oats most likely contain significant amounts of gluten. This type of protein can cause severe reactions in people with conditions like celiac disease. The particular organ that gets hit is the small intestine. Some of the more common symptoms are bloating, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. The other dangerous aspect about this condition is that it can lead to nutrient deficiencies because of the vulnerable state of the digestive system. For oats to be included in the diet of someone with this type of food intolerance, the cereal has to be authentically certified gluten-free.
USES OF OATS
Derived from wild grasses, the oat was domesticated into today’s cultivated plant. The oldest known oat grains were found in Egyptian remains from about 2000 BC. Scottish settlers introduced oats into North America in the early 17th century. Before being used as a food for humans, oats were used as a livestock feed in the form of grain, pasture, hay, or silage. Traditional medicinal uses of oats include the treatment of rheumatism, depression, chronic nerve pain, and loss of bladder control, and, externally, as a skin cleanser and softener.
Oats and oatmeal are used primarily as a food source. Use in celiac disease is debated. Benefits in dermatology, high cholesterol, heart conditions, and diabetes remain controversial.
THE HISTORY OF OATS
Porridge is a hot cereal similar to oatmeal. While oatmeal often consists of crushed, rolled, cut or coarsely ground oats, porridge consists of any type of crushed grain, including oats, wheat, rice or barley. Eating porridge on a regular basis can offer numerous health benefits.
Oats were a staple food of the Irish throughout our history. Vast quantities of oatmeal were consumed in the form of porridge. With the introduction of the potato in the late sixteenth century, the prevalence of oatmeal porridge declined.
During the twentieth century porridge increasingly became a popular dish on the Irish breakfast menu. Fast forward into the 21st century & Oatmeal in the form of porridge has regained its well deserved title as a nourishing & healthy breakfast. It can even be found on restaurant menus as a gourmet breakfast option, described as homemade creamy porridge with cinnamon, fresh berries and honey, or a as creamy hot oats with a generous splash of Irish whiskey. Either way what we’ve known for many years is that porridge is simply delicious & can offer a different breakfast every morning depending on what toppings you add.
TYPES OF OATS
RAW OATS, NEWLY HARVESTED
This is what oats look like before the kernels (groats) are separated from the hulls and stalks. Admittedly, you won’t see them this way in stores, but we thought you’d like to see what they look like fresh from the fields.
WHOLE OAT GROATS
A groat is another name for a grain kernel. Whole oat groats are the result of simply harvesting oats, cleaning them, and removing their inedible hulls. You can most often find these in health food stores. They take the longest to cook.
STEEL CUT OATS
If you cut groats into two or three pieces with a sharp metal blade, you get steel cut oats. They cook quicker than oat groats, because water can more easily penetrate the smaller pieces. Steel cut oats are also sometimes called Irish oatmeal.
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN STEEL-CUT, ROLLED, & INSTANT OATS
Also referred to as Irish or Scottish oats, this variety is made when the whole groat is cut into several pieces, rather than rolled. Steel-cut oats look almost like rice that’s been cut into pieces. This variety takes the longest to cook, and has a toothsome, chewy texture that retains much of its shape even after cooking.
In addition to being used for porridge, steel-cut oats can also be used to make meatloaf and savory congee (a nice alternative to rice), or add texture to stuffing.
Because of its toothsome texture, rolled or instant oats don’t make a good substitute for steel-cut oats.
Also called old-fashioned or whole oats, rolled oats look like flat, irregularly round, slightly textured discs. When processed, the whole grains of oats are first steamed to make them soft and pliable, then pressed to flatten them.
Rolled oats cook faster than steel-cut oats, absorb more liquid, and hold their shape relatively well during cooking. In addition to be heated for a warm breakfast bowl, rolled oats are commonly used in granola bars, cookies, muffins, and other baked goods.
Instant oats can be used in place of rolled oats, although the cook time will be much less, and the final dish will not have as much texture.
Also referred to as quick oats, instant oats are the most processed of the three oat varieties. They are pre-cooked, dried, and then rolled and pressed slightly thinner than rolled oats. They cook more quickly than steel-cut or rolled oats, but retain less of their texture, and often cook up mushy.
Rolled oats can be used in place of instant oats, although it will require more cook time, and the final dish will have more texture.