Are oats a superfood, here is why they are amazing

So many people now focus on eating so called “superfoods” to help with their health. It is debatable what counts as superfoods really though with many being essentially becoming fashionable rather than any better than other foods. That is my opinion anyway. The term superfoods generally refers to foods which are high in nutrients but relatively low in calories. Did you know that in some ways oats actually are the original superfood!

Whites oats
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Other superfoods

Quinoa and chia seeds are quite popular at the moment as superfoods but can often be quite pricey for a small bag. Of course, they are better than white pasta or other more processed foods.

Oats, however, are something they really do match up well to. Not to mention that oats are usually considerably cheaper and in my opinion more versatile and easier to use. Of course, this doesn’t mean you have to ditch the other options but rather add oats to the possibilities.

oats made into porridge

The benefits of oats

Dr Jenna Macciochi who is a UK doctor in immunology has been talking to White’s Oats about the benefits of superfoods and how oats as a superfood can help you. She says “Wholegrains such as oats offer various health benefits. Research suggests they may even be key to living longer.

Chia, quinoa and other exotic sounding ingredients all too often have the monopoly on the coveted ‘superfood’ title. However, endless studies put the humble oat right up there with more pricey health boosters.

The cereal grain’s proven talents include helping to lower high blood pressure and reduce bad cholesterol – not to mention an impressive line up of vitamins, minerals and fibre.”

I must admit on a personal level I was surprised by this and hadn’t realised that oats had so many potential benefits. Oats are favoured by so many athletes because the wholegrain goodness of them releases energy slowly and as such is great before exercise.

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A bowl of porridge an hour before exercise can help keep your blood sugars remain steady throughout the exercise you undertake. I guess therefore it makes sense they are a superfood as they sound pretty amazing!

three women jumping and smiling in exercise clothing

Explaining why oats are better than other cereals Dr Jenna says
“The health benefits of oats are broad and attributed to their unique, yet well-balanced nutritional profile. A source of carbohydrates, they contain quality, low-cost, plant-based protein (around 11-15%) with good amino acid composition.  Oats are also a good source of unsaturated (the good kind) fats, containing much higher levels than other cereals.”

oats infographic

How can you build oats into your diet?

Oats can be incorporated into pretty much every diet and healthy eating regime out there so it is just finding a way to make them work for you. Here are a few ideas that may help you decide how you could include them in your diet and lifestyle. If you follow Slimming World remember they are a Healthy Extra B choice too.

Porridge – simple but tasty especially in the winter.

Overnight oats with the oats soaked overnight in yoghurt or something similar and mixed with fruit.

Baked with an egg, yoghurt and some sweetener if required. Baked oats are almost like cakes and can be flavoured however you fancy.

As an ingredient in a savoury main meal such as Teriyaki.

Use oats to make flatbreads, there is a lovely looking recipe on the White’s Oats website for these topped with spiced lamb, kale and chilli. Picture below to tempt you!

Blend in a smoothie to keep you full for longer and especially ideal before exercise.

Sprinkle over warm fruit to make a quick almost crumble like topping and make the fruit more filling and nutritious.

Will you be enjoying oats, the original superfood more often?

oats used to make a main meal

Other ingredients tips you may like

If you like to cook with different ingredients and find different ways of using them then here are a few other articles I think you might like.

All you need to know about celeriac and how to use it

Oats an original superfood with lots of uses

Is couscous healthy, how you can use couscous well

How to grow your own vegetables from scraps

Jackfruit – what is it and how to use it

Cranberry juice – what are the benefits of it and how can you enjoy it

Seaweed – an unusual ingredient you should consider

A bowl of oats made into porridge topped with a poached egg

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