By Alanna Brown
If you have ever seen my Instagram feed in winter, you will know that I have a serious porridge addiction. Luckily for me, porridge is super healthy and a great way to start the day.
High in Vitamins & Minerals:
Oats are a plant-based grain which contain protein, iron, folate and B Vitamins. These are important for helping your body utilise energy more efficiently.
High in Fibre:
Oats contain both insoluble and soluble. Fibre is the indigestible parts of plants and is essential for a healthy diet.
- Insoluble fibre requires a lot of energy to break down, and sometimes passes through without breaking down at all. This is a good thing as it is fantastic for promoting regular bowel movements and cleaning out your insides.
- Soluble fibre, absorbs and dissolves in water to create a gel like substance which reduces bad cholesterol in the blood-stream and also helps to soften stools, promoting regular bowel movements.
Beta-glucan is one of the darlings of the nutrition world at the moment. It is a type of soluble fibre, found in oats and barley, which has been shown to lower bad blood cholesterol. This is great for promoting good cardiovascular health, especially as åthe leading cause of death in Australia is heart disease!
There is also budding evidence showing that beta-glucan can help boost immune health significantly and manage weight gain.
PORRIDGE FOR BREAKFAST
You can have a oats loads of different ways for breakfast which is one of the best things about this delicious product, however the advantages don’t stop there…
You will have more energy!
Thanks to the low to medium GI rating of oats, you get longer lasting energy. Allowing you to feel fuller for longer and concentrate on your morning tasks. The vitamins and minerals, like folate, iron and B vitamins also support healthy energy production.
Another interesting fact is that in traditional Chinese medicine warm meals are promoted for people who feel low on energy. It is thought that this is less work for the body, as it doesn’t need to warm up the food for it to be digested unlike colder meals.
Weight maintenance and weight loss!
Those who eat porridge may be less likely to be obese or overweight, according to some studies. This is possibly because oats increase the feeling of fullness, thanks to being high in fibre. Oats may be able to suppress appetite and have been shown to reduce energy intake over the course of the day.
Oh and porridge is easy to make and super delicious. Check out some of my recipes on the blog!
TYPES OF OATS
There are so many different types of oats on the shelves, is there much of a difference?
Never fear, the different types of oats still contain beta-glucan, as well as all the vitamins and minerals mentioned above.This is because they are all made of the whole oat groat.
The only difference is how they are prepared and how that affects their GI score. GI stands for Glycemic Index and is a way to classify the rate at which different foods raise blood glucose levels.
Low GI foods raise blood glucose a little, slowly over time where high GI foods spike the blood glucose levels. Spikes can make you feel irritable, dizzy and ravenously hungry.
To help you control blood sugar levels, which affects your mood, concentration and hunger throughout the day, it is always a good choice to choose low or medium GI carbohydrates.
Here are the three most popular types of oats:
Quick Oats which are pre-cooked, dried, and then rolled and pressed thinly. Quick Oats are used by Hummingbird and a great for active bodies, if you are in a hurry and need a quick energy boost.
Rolled Oats are also prepared like quick oats but not as thin. Rolled Oats tend to make your porridge a little bit more chunky and take longer to cook.
Steel Cut Oats have been chopped, not rolled. They are quite chewy and take the longest to cook out of all the types of oats.
By Alanna Brown
If you have any questions about nutrition please feel free to get in contact with me via my Instagram @lanaeatingpositive or email firstname.lastname@example.org