Whether you choose to make a bowl topped with berries, throw some in a smoothie, or even grind it into a flour, oats are a great fit into most diets!
To really get all the benefits of oats and oatmeal go for the steel cut, whole, or rolled varieties. Instant oatmeal has a higher glycemic response and thus is not a favourite in my books.
Let's take a look at 1/2 a cup of dry whole oats...
- 5 grams of fat
- 52 grams of carbs (8 grams of fiber)
- 13 grams of protein (and a majority of the amino acids)
- 40% B1 (RDA)
- 24% Copper (RDA)
- 35% Magnesium (RDA)
- 192% Manganese (RDA)
- 41% Phosphorus (RDA)
That being said oats have a medium glycemic response, 55 glycemic index and 13 glycemic load to be exact, putting them into the "more favourable carb" category. Although remember instant oatmeal...well its glycemic index is 83 and it's glycemic load is 30. Surprisingly high values!
From a fat perspective there isn't much to talk about. Oats contain a very low percentage of your daily fat content. They do however have a fairly nice balance of monounsaturates, polyunsaturates, and saturated fats. Assuming of course your not pouring a cups of heavy cream on top.
Finally the protein. Oats do contain an adequate serving of protein but personally I do not like to consider oats a good source of this important macro. Sure 1/2 a cup of dry oats contain 13 grams of protein but honestly 1/2 a cup of dry oats is quite a bit.
Lets start with manganese. Manganese is an essential mineral when it comes to the growth, development, and maintenance of your bone structure. It also plays an important role in blood sugar management, carbohydrate metabolism, and dealing with inflammation.
Similar to manganese, magnesium helps build and maintain healthy bones, as well as regulate blood pressure, and lower your risk of heart disease.
Copper plays a crucial role in the reduction of inflammation, cholesterol, and Arthritis.
Phosphorus is known improve digestion, regulate your bodies hormones, assist in protein formation, as well as support proper nutrient absorption.
Finally vitamin B1. Vitamin B1 is a water soluble vitamin that plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy cardiovascular and nervous system. It also assists the body break down and metabolize fats and proteins.
- Can lower cholesterol
- Contains a good amount of antioxidants
- May improve digestion (do the the insoluble fiber)
- Is very affordable and frickin' delicious
I started eating oatmeal as a post workout meal about 6 months ago and I can personally say that I love they way they make me feel.
The combination of the high carb content with the lower glycemic response gives my muscles the glycogen they need after a hard training session without the "one hour later sugar crash".
However oats may not be ideal for you if you have more than 20 pounds to lose or are a sedentary individual.
Live Your Best Life!