You can turn on the TV and see numerous ads touting the benefits of eating oat based cereals as being the way to reduce cholesterol, decrease blood pressure, lose weight and improve your bowel function. According to these commercials, eating the whole grain oats can not only help save your life and make you healthier, but enjoying the tasty grain might even make you happier. Just how much of this is true?
Oats have long been the grain of choice for feeding horses and other livestock because of its bulking or filling qualities, and also because of its high fiber content. Oats is a starchy grain that does not contain allergy provoking levels of gluten, a plant protein that can cause unwanted food allergies, and because of this can be a good food choice for those who want to fill-up but not bloat from gluten allergies.
Oats, also because of their high fiber quality, help in weight loss programs as the high fiber content of the grain slows the absorption of nutrients and also enhances elimination. This combination also successfully contributes to the reduction of cholesterol and the lowering of blood pressure, all a result of the plant nutrients contained in this whole grain.
Another health improvement that can be realized from consistent oat bran intake is the lowering of blood sugar levels. The digestive system slows with the intake of oat bran, and fiber and blood glucose levels become more stable rather than spiking or dropping too rapidly.
Oats also contain minerals and vitamins as well as phyto-nutrients that are part of nature’s organic medical cabinet. Even on low carbohydrate diets, oats is one grain that can be usually incorporated. This is due not only to its weight loss supporting properties, but also because of its lack of gluten.
Not only can Oats be a good food choice for those wanting to lose weight, it is also as a natural dietary alternative to many gluten rich cereals and grains.
- Dr. Georgianna Donadio