We all know oatmeal is good for us, but do you know how much it can really benefit you? Find out the whys and the hows of this incredibly healthy food by reading these 5 health benefits oatmeal provides!
1. Oatmeal decreases the levels of cholesterol in your blood as well as your risk of cardiac diseases
The FDA approved, in a unique move, a health label on oatmeal packages that explains how soluble fibers from oatmeal, as part of a low trans-fat diet, can decrease your chances of being afflicted with heart conditions. This was based on 30 years of research into oatmeal and its benefits.
2. Oatmeal helps digestion processes
The soluble fibers in oatmeal are taken apart in the lower intestine by resident bacteria. Those fibers that were not taken apart increase the volume of food and hasten bowel movements. This method decreases the likelihood of inflammatory diseases in the lower intestine, including hemorrhoids.
Tip: To enjoy these benefits, drink plenty of water. Consuming these fibers without drinking can cause constipation, stomach ache and gas.
3. Oatmeal and blood sugar levels
Again, we turn to the soluble fibers, which slow down the absorption of carbohydrates, and so prevent sharp increases in blood sugar levels. A 10 year long research was published in the American Journal of Public Health and has shown that consuming about 1 cup of cooked oatmeal a day, 2-4 times a week, will decrease the risk of type II diabetes by 16%. When you bring it up to 5-6 times a week - the risk goes down by 39%.
4. Getting thinner with oatmeal
Oatmeal adds volume to the food by absorbing the liquid around it. In addition, the fibers slow the digestion process and give us a feeling of being full for longer periods of time.
5. Oatmeal improves quality of sleep
People who consumed oatmeal before going to bed have demonstrated better and higher quality sleep than people who didn't. Oatmeal contains the essential amino acid tryptophan (one of the protein building blocks which we only get from food). tryptophan is a source material for creating melatonin (as well as serotonin). A lack in melatonin will cause sleeping problems, while an increase in tryptophan will prolong our deep sleep.
Recommended amount per day:
The general recommendation is about 4-5 spoons a day (can make a porridge of it), so you too can start enjoying the health benefits of oatmeal (at about 25-30 grams a day).