Economical oats are high in
soluble fiber and a source of
healthy fats. They can keep
hunger at bay, lower “bad”
cholesterol, and keep blood
sugar levels even.

Oats have several health-giving properties. They are rich in the soluble fiber beta-glucan and have been proven to help lower “bad” cholesterol, boost “good” cholesterol, maintain a healthy circulatory system, and help prevent heart attacks. Oats also contain a range of antioxidants and plant chemicals to help keep heart and arteries healthy, such as avenanthramides (a phytoalexin plant chemical with antibiotic properties), saponins, and vitamin E. They also contain polyphenols, plant compounds that can suppress tumor growth. They are also relatively low on the glycemic index, which means they are particularly suitable for dieters, people with insulin resistance, and diabetics.

  • One of the best grains to keep the heart and arteries healthy.

  • Contain plant chemicals to help reduce the risk of cancers.

  • Lower on the glycemic index than many cereals.

  • A good source of a wide range of vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins, vitamin E, magnesium, calcium, and iron.

Practical tips:

The fat content of oats means that they don’t store well for long, so keep them in an airtight container in a cool, dry, dark place and use within 2–3 weeks. Use oat flakes to make your own homemade muesli. Oat flakes can be used for making cookies and crumble toppings, and oat flour can replace wheat flour.

Although oats do contain small amounts of gluten, people with gluten intolerance (celiac disease) often find they can tolerate oats in their diet, especially if limited to no more than ⅔ cup a day. Celiac sufferers should check with their doctor before eating oats.

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