Benefits Of Oats| Health, Skin & Hair Benefits| Side-Effects| Recipes
Considered as one of the most popular breakfast cereals, oats are filled with fiber and full of energy. From strengthening immunity to the lowering of bad cholesterol levels, there are various reasons why oats could be your choice for a healthy breakfast.
Oats are considered to be one of the base ingredients for the preparation of other antioxidant-rich breakfast cereals such as Muesli and Granola. By itself, oats are also enjoyed in the form of oatmeal or rolled oats, soaked in cold milk or cooked in hot milk. There are many health benefits of eating oats, but the one that is most popular and widely talked about is the ability of oats to lower blood cholesterol levels. This has been proven through a series of studies and is a scientifically-backed health benefit of eating oats regularly. Oats are also considered to be gluten-free grains and are an amazing source of minerals, fiber, and protein. In India, oats are mainly cultivated in the northern part and are mostly of two kinds, Avena Sativa and Avana Sterillis.
Also Read: Muesli vs. Granola: Which One Is The Healthier Breakfast Option?
Including Oats in your everyday diet can help you improve your lifestyle, but still, the question remains as to why? And how can oats be beneficial? Let’s find out.
Best Benefits Of Oats
As a gluten-free grain that is cultivated in a natural environment, there can never be anything wrong with Oats, and including it as a part of your diet can never be considered as something that one would regret. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, oats, just like Curd and Aloe Vera, can also be used for its health as well as skin benefits.
To further improve our understanding of the benefits of oats, let’s take a look at each of its benefits as an individual quality.
Also Read: Oatmeal Diet: Oatmeal Diet For Weight Loss
Health Benefits Of Eating Oats
The nutritional content of an oat is responsible for various health related benefits such as:
1. A Rich Source Of Energy
The carbohydrate content in oats is responsible for providing all the required energy that can help the body function in a more efficient way. The carbohydrate-rich bowl of oats is usually consumed in the morning for an energetic start of the day. Adding milk is a great way to boost the calcium and protein content of the first meat of your day.
The fiber content present is also responsible for the slower absorption of oats in our body, thus keeping us feeling fuller for a longer period of time.
2. Helps In Bone Related Problems
Being rich in minerals such as Silicon, which is responsible for bone maintenance and formation, oats can be consumed by people who have low bone density. However, it is important to check whether the oats have turned rancid of not, for the rancidity of oats can decrease the concentration of minerals present in it.
Thus, steel-cut oats are much preferred over rolled oats, as rolled oats have an increased chance of getting rancid.
3. Aiding In Weight Loss
Due to the fibrous nature of oats, it slows down the absorption of oats by our body and keeps us filled for a long time, thus preventing us from over-eating. However, eating oats can be more beneficial for weight loss if you buy plain oats rather than packaged oatmeal, as it contains a high concentration of sugar.
4. Improves Cholesterol Level
Oats, rich in vitamin E and full of fibers, can also be associated with the decrease in the overall cholesterol level in our body, thus improving our cardiac health. The oat bran, unlike packaged oatmeal, has a higher concentration of fiber than oatmeal, and hence is a rather more popular choice for consumption. The fiber present in oats is called beta-glucan, which is responsible for lowering the level of bad cholesterol while also maintaining the good cholesterol level in our body.
5. Increasing Immunity
Again, thanks to the presence of the powerful fiber beta-glucan, oats can help us in fighting various diseases that attack our system. This is due to the reason that many cells in our immune system are designed to absorb this fiber that is present in oats, thus providing them with nutrients that result in a healthier immune system.
Skin And Hair Benefits Of Oats
Just like Curd and Aloe Vera, the benefits of oats also range from our heath to our beauty. Some of the beauty benefits of Oats are:
6. Works As A Moisturizer
The fiber content in oats, when applied over our skin, forms a thin film which absorbs the moisture from the atmosphere and redirects it into our skin. Oats can also help in removing the dead cells, thus when washed off, it leaves behind a skin that looks more radiant and fresh.
7. A Natural Cleanser
Containing a compound called saponins, Oat acts as a natural cleanser by removing dirt and oil from the pores of our skin. The face pack can be made by mixing oats alongside with honey, and then applied over the face and kept for 15 minutes before being washed off. Oats can also be mixed in bath water for a more refreshing and skin rejuvenating session.
8. Lightening Skin
Due to their property of removing dead cells from the skin, Oats, when applied over the skin, can be associated with the lightening of scars and stretch marks.
9. Fighting Acne
Due to the anti-inflammatory property in oats, the thin filmed formed when oats are applied over our skin protects it from the external pathogens that might attack it and cause inflammation.
10. Prevents Itchy Scalp
Oats are an important ingredient to your hair-care regimen. There is no doubt that if oats can be used to treat dry and itchy skin, it can also work as a prevention method for an itchy scalp. Working as a natural moisturizer, applying oats over your scalp can help in retaining lost moisture.
11. Prevents Hair fall
Being rich in fibers, oats provide our scalp with the nutrition it requires for the growth of a healthy set of hair. Apart from that, due to the property of oats which associates it with the removal of dead cells, it is also responsible for removing dandruff and opening the blocked hair follicles which further increases the rate of nutrient absorption by our scalp.
Though there might be a lot of advantages associated with the consumption of oats and oatmeal, however, one must understand that anything, if not consumed in a regulated and an organized manner, can also affect our health adversely.
Side-Effects Of Oats
Oats are mostly considered safe for consumption, can sometimes lead to a health-related problem only if not consumed responsibly. However, compared to the benefits that oats have on our system, the related side-effects are quite limited.
One of the most common side-effects that can result due to an unregulated consumption of oats is celiac disease, it is a disease that affects the small intestine and could happen due to the rich fiber content present in oats. The high fiber content present in oats which results in a slower rate of absorption by our body can damage our intestine if consumed in high volume. Conversely, eating oats may not suit people who suffer from celiac disease already.
The other side-effect of oats includes indigestion and an increased frequency of defecation, which might result in a weakened body. Thus, a regulated and controlled consumption of oats or oatmeal is required for a more healthy and responsible diet.
Oats Based Recipes
Since Oats have become a very popular choice due to their beneficial factors, many new and innovative ways of consuming oats have emerged to improve their consumption. Some of them are:
1. Oats Based Baked Items
New variations of breads and cookies in which oats are used as the base ingredients have become quite popular in demand since the last decade. Oats, in order to make these items, is first mixed in the batter and after carefully stirring the batter, it is baked in an oven to produce the result outcome, which is an oat based bread or cookie.
2. A Blended Approach
If you are looking for an easier way to include oats in your diet, then you don’t have to look any further. Oats can be blended alongside other ingredients such as water, which when blended well, would result in nut-free oat milk, with all the benefits of oat. The amount of water added is based on how much thick you want your oat milk to be,
However, apart from the blending techniques, you can add fruit such as bananas to add a little bit of taste and added nutrients to it.
3. Cooked Oats
Apart from eating oats along with your breakfast items such as bread, oats can also be eaten in lunch and dinner when cooked alongside vegetables. One such dish is an oats upma, in which oats are cooked with spices such as mustard seeds and green chilies, and added to the boiling mixture of vegetables before being cooked.
4. Oats Based Sweets
If you have enough time to devote to the preparation of oats based sweets, then I guess that you might find the final result to be quite satisfying. An oat-based chocolate bar, which is prepared by first melting the ingredients, missing them well, and then refrigerating them, could take up to 50 minutes to be prepared. However, since the recent increase in the demand of oat-based food items, there are many manufacturers that produce oat-based chocolate bars, so if you are looking to satisfy your sweet tooth with a snack that is also good for your health, all you have to do is go to your nearest supermarket.
The Bottom Line
The most important benefit of eating oats is that their inclusion into someone’s diet would result in a healthy and better lifestyle because oats are considered to be one of the healthiest foods that one can choose. However, it is also important that consumption must be regulated.