Oats: Benefits and Properties

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Oatmeal is one of the most complete and healthy cereals in the world and enjoys great popularity and acceptance, both in adults and children.

Its energetic and vitamin contribution, in addition to the presence of minerals such as iron, selenium, manganese and copper, make oats an ideal super cereal for a large number of people

Nutritionally, it is the cereal that provides the most protein, and has all the essential amino acids except lysine, which it has in insufficient quantities

  • Scientific name: Avena sativa
  • Class: Liliopsida
  • Family: Poaceae
  • Species: Avena sativa; L.
  • Kingdom: Plantae
  • Order: Poales
  • Tribe: Aveneae

Although this cereal is highly praised for its nutritional properties, some precautions should be taken into account. So, a thorough analysis of this cereal will help to have a balanced perspective.

Nutritional value of oats

These are the approximate nutrients of oats that are present in each 100 grams:

  • Calories. 380 Kcal
  • Proteins. 15 g
  • Carbohydrates. 65 g
  • Fiber. 10 g
  • Total fat. 7 g
  • Calcium. 54 mg
  • Magnesium. 11 mg
  • Zinc. 4 mg
  • Iron. 4 mg
  • Vitamin B1. 0.80 mg
  • Vitamin B2. 0,15 mg
  • Vitamin B6. 0.10 mg

Properties of oats

  • It contains all the essential amino acids for the human body with the exception of lysine.
  • Contains a large amount of soluble and insoluble fiber, which makes it a good intestinal regulator.
  • It provides omega-6 and omega-3
  • It contains B vitamins, folic acid and vitamin E.
  • Provides iron, zinc, potassium and calcium.
  • It regulates cholesterol and blood pressure levels.
  • It has antitussive and expectorant attributes.
  • It has a prebiotic effect that strengthens the immune system.

Benefits of oats

This cereal contributes to the prevention and treatment of several diseases, such as:

  • Diseases of the digestive tract. Its high content of soluble and insoluble fiber makes it a great regulator of intestinal transit. On the other hand, it has the ability to protect the mucous membranes, so it is beneficial in cases of gastritis, heartburn, irritable colon and hemorrhoids
  • Prevention of cardiovascular diseases. Many of its components regulate cholesterol and blood pressure levels, and since it contains lecithin and beta-glucans, it also helps in cholesterol reduction.
  • It purifies the gallbladder. By dragging bile salts from digestion and favoring their elimination through feces, it helps to clean the gallbladder and avoid gallstones.
  • Improves anemia. The iron it contains allows recovery from anemia. In this regard, it is not good to consume oat bran, because it contains many phytates that reduce iron absorption.
  • Ideal for slimming diets. It is effective in slimming diets because of its high fiber content and its contribution of slowly absorbed carbohydrates, which helps to maintain stable blood glucose levels and contributes to create a feeling of satiety

Uses of oats

It has an incredible number of edible uses and is available in different presentations, such as the following:

  • Grains. The grains can be milled into oat flour for baking and confectionery.
  • Bran. This provides a lot of fiber and minerals. It is used in breakfast, confectionery and bakery
  • Flakes. They can be made as cookies, cakes, breads, salads, sauces, creams, porridges and smoothies
  • Oat milk or oat drink. It is obtained by cooking clean and crushed oat grains. It can be used as a milk substitute and is suitable for lactose intolerant people and those allergic to cow’s milk protein.

Cosmetic uses of oats

Oatmeal is also used in the world of cosmetics, because, due to its amount of vitamins, minerals and proteins, it helps to moisturize, exfoliate, cleanse and clarify the skin. Therefore, it is used in the following ways:

  • Herbal therapies. Oat extract is used for relaxation and stress reduction.
  • To treat skin bacteria. It contains probiotics, good skin bacteria. In addition, oat-based products also treat skin bacteria without added probiotics.
  • Bath gels. Oatmeal is used in gels for dry and sensitive skin that cleanse the epidermis without irritating it.

Advantages and disadvantages of oatmeal

Oatmeal enjoys the privilege of being the cereal that contains the most vitamins and minerals, but it also has the highest percentage of vegetable fat.

Many people have adopted the habit of including it as the first meal of the day because of its great energetic contribution.

This cereal also has almost exclusive polyphenols, known as avenanthramides, which have antioxidant action and are responsible for regulating blood pressure by allowing blood vessels to dilate.

Other benefits of oats and some precautions to be considered are discussed below.

Advantages of oats

  • It contains essential amino acids that help stimulate the liver to produce more lecithin, which removes heavy compounds from the body.
  • The soluble fiber of this cereal is very beneficial for diabetic patients, because it favors the digestion of starch, stabilizing sugar levels.
  • It facilitates intestinal transit and prevents constipation
  • It is the cereal that contains more proteins, so it makes an important contribution to the production and development of new tissue in the body.
  • It contains phytochemical substances of vegetable origin that help prevent the risk of cancer.
  • It has slow absorption carbohydrates, which allows a longer satiety effect and a better control of blood sugar levels.
  • It is a good source of omega 6 unsaturated fats, which helps lower bad cholesterol.
  • Contains B vitamins, which participate in the development and maintenance of the central nervous system.
  • It prevents hypothyroidism, since it contains iodine, a mineral that allows the thyroid to function properly.
  • The calcium levels present are essential to prevent bone demineralization.

Disadvantages of oats

  • Although it contains less gluten than wheat, it is not very appropriate for celiac or intolerant to this protein.
  • Excessive consumption of this cereal can cause an increase in heart rate.
  • Due to its high fiber content, oats can cause intestinal gas and constant bowel movements.

For all its properties, it can be said that oats are a natural gift that helps to start each day with strength and energy!

Marcel Quirós Reyes
Marcel Quirós Reyeshttps://www.google.com/search?kgmid=/g/11rclvxgrp
Dietitian and physician with a degree in medicine from the Complutense University of Madrid and a Master's degree from the Autonomous University of Madrid. Doctorate and committed to Human Health.

Aunque pueda contener afirmaciones, datos o apuntes procedentes de instituciones o profesionales sanitarios y la información contenida en PharmaSalud esté redactada por profesionales en medicina, recomendamos al lector que cualquier duda relacionada con la salud sea consultada con un profesional del ámbito sanitario.

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