“After indulging in a scrumptious, hearty meal, we count our calories and then vow to take control of what we put in our bodies in moderation. Most of us also have a love-hate relationship with working out and staying active. Although it takes dedication and focus to stay fit consistently, it isn’t that tough. One can make wiser choices relating to the food they eat and the amount of time they spend exercising. Balancing both can work wonders for any individual,” said Raghav Gupta, founder of Oateo Oats.
He added that oats are the quintessential healthy choice that one can make along with an active regime. “Oats are naturally gluten-free while being high in fibre and antioxidants, offering you more health benefits by just scooping into a warm, creamy bowl of oatmeal every day,” he told indianexpress.com.
However, not everyone may be familiar with the different types of oats, their use and their benefits. Below are a few examples of the variety available, as shared by Gupta.
Steel-cut or Irish oats are a type of whole oats, that have been cut with a steel blade. Given their nutty flavour and chewy texture, the thick pieces of the steel-cut oats are broken down slowly by the body thereby keeping it feeling fuller for a longer time. The thick flakes also bring down the glycemic index, which helps control blood sugar levels and prevent a sudden spike in levels of glucose in the body. Steal cut oats can ideally be consumed as hot cereals, porridges or even risottos and pilafs.
Commonly known as the old fashioned oats, rolled oats are the most regular type of oats as they have a mild and soft texture and absorb a lot of liquid. The oats are toasted, hulled, steamed, and then rolled by passing them through large rolling mills. Rolled oats are best used to make oat milk, smoothies, baked fruit toppings, granola, muffins, snack bars, and cookies. The complex carbs in them help you stay full longer and are also rich in protein, iron, zinc, and magnesium while the soluble fibre helps in lowering cholesterol.
The fast and convenient instant oats are oats that are available in single-serving oatmeal packets. Instant oats are pre-cooked, dried, cut, steamed for a longer time, and then rolled into thin flakes for instant preparation. Instant oats are famously consumed as the ideal breakfast cereal but can also be used in cookies, smoothies, muffins, pancakes, or meatloaf as a binder. Instant oats are low in fat, more specifically saturated fats, that reduces the risk of heart problems or cardiac arrest.
Oat bran is the outer layer of the groat and is made from hulled oat kernel. Oat bran is rich in insoluble and dietary fibre, protein, and iron. Used in bakeries for quick bread and pancakes, it acts as a binder and keeps the batter light. These are also low in cholesterol and sodium. Oat bran is also a rich source of thiamin, magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, and selenium.
Oats have many other variants Oat Groats, Quick Oats and Oat flour. An oatmeal breakfast does not just cater to the diet-conscious but also helps in improving the immune system, maintains your gut health, protects your heart and gives you better skin. Packed with a plethora of health benefits, you can choose a particular type of oat-based meal suited to your requirements.