Oats could be regarded as a superfood all by themselves. A gluten free whole grain, oats have various research proven health benefits and are a nutritious source of protein, carbohydrate & fiber. Also, nutrient rich with many vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants you can begin to see why they are a popular grain to eat. Touted as a good anti-inflammatory and also used topically in shampoos and lotions they have become very popular in the health & beauty arena.
So, what’s not to love? Oats contain powerful antioxidants called polyphenols including avenanthramides which are only found in oats & may even help heart health by lowering blood pressure (by increasing nitric oxide production).
A type of soluble fiber called beta glucan found in oats is a bit of a star player as it has several really great qualities. Firstly, it helps satiety (feeling full) after eating as the beta glucan partially dissolves in water forming a gel like mixture in the gut. This mixture also slows down the absorption of sugars by the body helping the growth of good bacteria in the gut & also helping stabilize blood sugar (which is especially important for those with diabetes and metabolic syndrome). Lastly, beta glucan is also credited with helping lower cholesterol levels too.
As oats slow down the emptying of the gut which helps you feel full, the oat fiber passing through the digestive system may also help regulate digestion & even help relieve constipation when eaten regularly.
N.B. While oats are naturally gluten free they can become contaminated by other grains during processing. At Vigilant Eats, we source our oats from a family farm in Montana where the oats are dedicated gluten free, so we can enjoy the benefits of oats as the base of our superfood cereals with confidence.