Health Fitness Revolution is all about options- especially for breakfast! As we wrote before here, it’s our favorite meal of the day! Keep in mind that the best way to reap the benefits of oatmeal is through regular oatmeal and not the instant stuff, which is loaded with sugar and sodium. To add flavor without adding an onslaught of calories, mix in some fruit like apples, cranberries or blueberries or add a tablespoon of brown sugar for a touch of sweetness. Oatmeal health benefits will amaze you!
OATMEAL REDUCES CHOLESTEROL LEVELS
Oatmeal is a rich source of soluble fiber, which inhibits the body’s absorption of low-density-lipoprotein, or LDL (bad cholesterol). Many studies have shown that the unique fiber in oatmeal called beta-glucan, has beneficial effects on cholesterol levels- 1.5 cups of oatmeal also contains more than 5 grams of fiber, which is enough to reduce your cholesterol level.
OATMEAL REDUCES THE RISK OF DEVELOPING HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
Since oatmeal is high in fiber, which is heart-healthy, it offers many cardiovascular benefits, including a reduced risk of developing high blood pressure. For optimal oatmeal health benefits It’s recommended that postmenopausal women, who tend to develop high blood pressure, should eat six servings of oatmeal or other whole grains on a weekly basis. Studies show that men can also reduce their risk of heart failure if they eat one bowl of oatmeal per day.
IT’S FULL OF ANTIOXIDANTS THAT PROTECT THE HEART
Oatmeal contains a special type of antioxidant called avenanthramide. Avenanthramides fight off free radicals that attack high-density lipoproteins, or HDL (good cholesterol). They also protect LDL cholesterol from oxidizing from copper, which reduces the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
IT PREVENTS THE ARTERIES FROM HARDENING
Avenanthramides not only protect against heart disease, they also prevent the arteries from hardening. Those antioxidants suppress the production of molecules that allow monocytes to adhere to the walls of the arteries. When paired with vitamin C, the cardiovascular benefits of oatmeal are enhanced, so drink a glass of orange juice or eat some citrus with your oatmeal.
HELPS PROTECT AGAINST HEART FAILURE
A Harvard study on 21,000 participants over 19 years showed that found that men who enjoyed a daily morning bowl of whole grain (but not refined) cereal had a 29% lower risk of heart failure.
OATMEAL CAN PREVENT THE DEVELOPMENT OF BREAST CANCER
Oatmeal, like many whole grains, contains plant lignans, which are converted by intestinal flora into mammalian lignans. One lignan, called enterolactone, is thought to protect against breast and other hormone-dependent cancers as well as heart disease. Studies have shown that women who take in a high amount of fiber have a reduced risk of developing breast cancer, especially if the fiber comes from whole grains. The insoluble fiber in whole grains will attack carcinogens as well as lower levels of estrogen in the body and this can protect the body from the development of cancer. A study conducted in the UK found that pre-menopausal women reduced their risk of developing breast cancer by 41% just by eating fiber from whole grains.
IT STABILIZES BLOOD SUGAR
The benefits from fiber don’t stop with cancer prevention. The high fiber and complex carbohydrates slow down the conversion of this whole food to simple sugars. The high levels of magnesium nourish the body’s proper use of glucose and insulin secretion.
IT CAN PREVENT THE DEVELOPMENT OF DIABETES
As mentioned above, aside from fiber, oatmeal is also a good source of magnesium, which regulates the body’s insulin and glucose levels. It’s been shown that, over the course of 8 years, women who eat a diet rich in whole grains can reduce their risk of developing diabetes by up to 31%. This is boosted with the calcium from milk (dairy, almond, or even coconut).
IT GIVES THE IMMUNE SYSTEM A BOOST
It boosts your immune system! The unique fiber in oatmeal called beta-gluten also has been shown to helps neutrophils travel to the site of an infection more quickly and it also enhances their ability to eliminate the bacteria they find there.
EATING OATMEAL CAN PREVENT WEIGHT GAIN
Because oatmeal is so rich in fiber, it will make you fuller for a longer period of time. Fiber will increase the viscosity of the stomach’s contents so that it will take longer to empty. Feeling full for a longer period of time will also prevent the need to snack on sugary or salty foods throughout the day. Research has linked a lower risk of obesity to children who regularly eat oatmeal.
THOSE WHO CAN’T EAT GLUTEN CAN EAT OATMEAL
Adults and children who have celiac disease cannot eat gluten, but studies show that they can eat oatmeal although it contains a small amount of gluten. If you are especially sensitive, there are many gluten free varieties available.