I didn’t grow up eating oatmeal for breakfast, because we’re “savoury family”, and only discovered it few years ago, and instantly fell in love.
Eating a bowl of oatmeal each morning is the perfect way to start your day off right. Let me just clarify that the oatmeal discussed here is not the instant kind that comes in the different flavours- these are full of sugar. The real stuff is the plain oat flakes from Quaker Oats or a similar brand. My favourite oats are 100% Wholegrain organic jumbo oats from Flahavan’s.
Oats are the perfect source of fiber as they contain both Soluble and In-Soluble Fiber. According to the American Cancer Society:
- Insoluble fiber’s cancer-fighting properties are due to the fact that it attacks certain bile acids, reducing their toxicity
- Soluble fiber can reduce LDL cholesterol without lowering HDL cholesterol. LDL is bad; HDL is good.
- Soluble fiber slows down the digestion of starch. This may be beneficial to diabetics because, when you slow down the digestion of starch, you avoid the sharp rises in your blood sugar level that usually occurs following a meal.
- It has been found that those who eat more oats are less likely to develop heart disease, a disease that is currently widespread in the United States.
- The phytochemicals in oats may also have cancer-fighting properties.
- Oats are a good source of many nutrients including vitamin E, zinc, selenium, copper, iron, manganese and magnesium. Oats are also a good source of protein.
The difference between insoluble and soluble fiber, besides the foods that they come from, is what they actually do in your body.
Insoluble fiber’s main role is that it makes stools heavier and speeds their passage through the gut, relieving constipation. Soluble fiber breaks down as it passes through the digestive tract, forming a gel that traps some substances related to high cholesterol, thus reducing the absorption of cholesterol into the bloodstream.
Oatmeal has a pretty bland taste which makes it hard for the average person to consume each morning. Lucky for you I’m giving you some of my top tips for making oatmeal taste amazing:
- Make the oatmeal with milk instead of water. This will also add calcium and more protein. If you are vegan then almond, soy or rice milk is perfect too. You can even try oat milk, too!
- Add raw honey to your oatmeal. It will naturally sweeten up the taste without adding processed sugar.
- Stir in your favorite-flavored protein powder to it after it’s been cooked. This gives the oatmeal a pretty good taste plus it adds protein. Combine this with using milk and you’ll have a meal that is high in fiber, calcium and protein!
- Add fresh fruit such as blueberries, strawberries and apples to the oatmeal.
- Mix in a tablespoon of your favorite nut butter for an extra protein boost
- Add some raw cacao powder for a delicious chocolate treat
- And if you feel really adventures – I’m sticking to my savoury flavours and most often top my oatmeal (cooked with water) with a fried egg and chopped tomatoes.
You should aim to eat roughly 1 cooked cup of oatmeal each morning for optimal health benefits. Have a play around with the ingredients until you find a taste that you fall in love with. Your heart and body will thank you for it!
If you’re looking for other ideas to add to your daily menu, try new flavours, and get help and support – you can still join the Clean Eating Challenge, that started today. Sign up here: www.fiminska.com/challenge and let’s have some fun!