Today, we are gonna explore the innumerable benefits of the most widely used breakfast recipe across the world- one that spans across generations and caters to the needs of both the young and the old alike- OATS!
The history behind Oats
Scientifically christened as Avena Sativa, Oats belong to the family of Poaceae. They are found to grow mainly in temperate regions and leading the list of oats production is Russia, followed by Canada and Poland. In India, Oats are found to grow mainly in the Himalayan foothills region and the northern states of Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. There isn’t clear evidence that point to the exact period of the first usage of oats- but it is believed that oats were found in Egyptian tombs as early as 2000BC! The first edible use of Oats points to North America around the 1600s.
Benefits of Oats
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Oats are found to be useful in numerous fields such as nutrition, medicine, cosmetics, etc. With regard to its role in nutrition, oats have always been considered the ideal recipe for breakfast. Consumption of oat bran- the outer layer of oats has found to be low in cholesterol. This is because oats are found to be rich in dietary fibres- in particular- beta-glucan which helps in lowering the levels of bad cholesterol. Oats are also found to be rich in minerals such as manganese, selenium, phosphorous, magnesium and zinc. They are also known to contain abundant levels of flavonoids, carotenoids and avenanthramides. This presence of avenanthramides, according to researchers, prevents the formation of fat in the arteries and helps as a great source of reducing blood pressure and heart- related disorders. Oats are also a rich source of Vitamin B1- thiamin- which is critical to the nervous system and folic acid- that helps in fetal development.
Another interesting feature of oats is that over 95%of oats grown are used for livestock purposes. Also- many would be surprised to know that oats have a very soothing effect on the skin. It helps soothe dry skin and itchiness – hence making it an essential ingredient in the home- made facial packs. They are found in skin cleansers, scrubs and sunblocks as well.
Types of Oats:
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Oats are found in various types and forms.
Whole Oats: Whole oats have a hard outer hull that must be removed before using for human consumption- which is quite a tough task.
Oat Groats: These are the whole oats with the outer hull removed- but with the bran layer still present.
Steel Cut Oats: Also known as coarse/rough oatmeal- they are nothing but the Groats run through a steel cutter – resulting in three to four pieces – which still contain the bran layer- hence making them nutritious.
Rolled Oats: These are made by steaming the groats and flattening them with a roller.
Instant Oats: These are similar to rolled oats- just that they are steamed longer and rolled more thinly. This is the more famous variety of oats- that people use to make porridge- as means of instant breakfast.
Oat flour: Oats grounded into flour form come in three types- coarse, medium and fine. Medium oat flour is the ones usually used for baking cookies.
Oats- hence considered as a storehouse of energy and good health finds its place in a lot of quick and healthy recipes. We bring you a list of some of these recipes.
- Oats porridge
- Oatmeal cookies
- Instant Oats Dosa
- Instant Oats Idli
- Oats upma
- Banana Oats smoothie
- Oats walnut muffins
- Granola Bars
Try these recipes in your kitchen and add some taste to the good health that oats will provide! Happy cooking!
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