May 20, 2015

The Health Benefits of Oatmeal


I don't typically share too many "health"-related articles on my blog, but I've been writing for LoveLiveHealth, and I'm also out of recipe photos, so I'm taking inspiration from my go-to breakfast item and sharing its health benefits :) 

(Warning: shameless self-promotion here: ) if you are interested in seeing more articles like this, check out the articles that I've written for LLH: http://www.lovelivehealth.com/author/hannah-claudia/


1. Lowers Cholesterol
I think that the most well-known brand of oatmeal in the U.S. is "Quaker Oats", and based on all of their commercials and packaging, most people are generally aware that oatmeal is "heart healthy". But why? Well, oats contain "beta-glucan", a type of fiber that is particularly beneficial in lowering total cholesterol levels. A 1% decrease in cholesterol levels actually decreases the risk of developing heart disease by 2%. 


2. Promotes Immune Response to Infections
Continuing with the special fiber "beta-glucan", this fiber has also been proven to help neutrophils (a kind of immune cell) find the site of an infection, hastening the process of eliminating unwanted bacteria and the overall healing process.


3. Lowers Risk for Type II Diabetes
The Black Women's Health Study conducted research involving over 41,000 participants: after 8 years, researchers determined that women who frequently ate whole grains had a 31% lower risk of developing Type II diabetes. 


4. Protective Against Childhood Asthma
Several Dutch researchers (Dutch National Institute of Public Health and the Environment, Utrecht University, University Medical Center Gronigen) found that the prevalence of wheezing in children who ate whole grains and fish was 4.2% compared to the general prevalence of 20%, and the incidence of current asthma in those children was 2.8% compared to the general chance of 16.7%. They concluded that high intakes of whole grains reduced the probability of developing asthma by 54%.


5. Provides Long-term Sustenance/Slow Digestion
This is honestly the main reason why I eat oatmeal every morning, and why I always ate it before big tests (SATs, APs, lifeguard certification, you name it). Being a whole grain with a lot of fiber means that oatmeal digests slowly and does not create spikes in your blood sugar, unlike refined grains and simple sugars. As a result, oatmeal is a satiating option, especially for those who don't have time for a mid-morning snack. 


How I soak & cook my oats (and recipe for photo above)

More information on the health benefits of oatmeal here:  http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.phptname=foodspice&dbid=54#healthbenefits


xoxo, han

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