#36alive 161: Get Your Oats

Everyone knows oats are good for us, but do you know why, well you’re about to. Firstly, due to the high fiber content and the antioxidant compounds unique to oats that prevent free radical damage, they can significantly lower cholesterol reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, in other words, they’re good for your heart. Oats also assists in stabalising blood sugar levels which are recommended for everyone, people suffering from Type 2 Diabetes especially. For the athletes among us, oats are also a good source of protein, and provide both magnesium and manganese, therefore while the protein is building your muscles, the magnesium and manganese are complementing this by relaxing them and building strong bones. They also have a healthy amount of B-Vitamins important for a healthy metabolism, energy, brain health and muscle function. Oats are predominantly thought of as a staple for breakfast, this is due to the complex carbohydrate content which provides longer lasting energy throughout the day and great fuel for workout, but personally, and if this makes me ‘mad’ then so be it, but I’ll eat oats at any time of day. A ‘generous’ portion of porridge is often my go to meal if I’m looking for something quick and nutritious. I didn’t get my nickname of “The Porridge King” for no reason after all. Although I did used to get called “Egg Boy” as well which isn’t quite so glamorous, neither was it when I got ‘egged’ by a group of unruly teenagers once on my way home from work but that is another story on it’s own.

Moving swiftly on from that, a study carried out in Japan suggests that oats may cut cigarette cravings, so if you’re trying to pack in the tabs, get your oats instead to replace them.

Finally if you think a bowl of porridge is a bit dull or bland then think again, get creative with it. Try adding the following to play about with flavours to get yout body popping even more ; cacao, peanut/almond butter, carob, honey, seeds, coconut, fruit ,cinnamon, ginger, and for the really adventurous of you – turmeric.

For some porridge recipe ideas, click here.

For an oat based pancake recipe click here.

For oat based cookie / flapjacks click here.

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