The delicious and healthy oats.
Oats are among the many annual grasses that produce grains consumed by humans. They have been cultivated for over 4,000 years, and are very popular in healthy food movement because of their high nutritional value, and they have been used as breakfast porridge for centuries. Oats have a nutty flavour and are an excellent supplement to bread and other foods. Like other grasses used for food, it grows on stalks with the kernels more widely distributed along a looser tree like framework. When harvested the grains have their extremely hard hulls removed before they can be sold, either whole or milled as rolled oats. Oatmeal is a whole grain: Oats are processed in a way that does not strip off the nutritious bran or germ, so that you get all of the whole grain goodness. And even though oatmeal is processed in different ways like steel cut and old fashioned, they all maintain the bran and germ. The difference is just in how they are milled. For steel cut coats, the grains are run through steel blades that thinly slice them, while old fashioned oats are steamed and then rolled. They are similar nutritionally, although steel cut oats take longer to cook and may have a bit more fibre. Why does oatmeal reduce cholesterol. This is a common question associated with oats, but the reason for them to be good for cholesterol is the presence of a fibre called Beta-Glucan, which absorbs the bad cholesterol and helps in maintaining a healthy heart. Studies have confirmed that eating 3 grams of oat fibre per day (around one cup serving) can lower cholesterol by 8% to 20%. The next important health aspect associated with oats is their anti-inflammation property. Chronic inflammation is thought to contribute to a number of health problems, including obesity, cancer and heart disease. Oats have unique anti-inflammatory compounds that helps to reduce the expression of those inflammatory molecules. A bowl for breakfast good till lunch. I have experienced it myself - when I consume a bowl of oats in the morning I do not crave for food till lunchtime. The reason is the presence of beta-gluten, which helps in stabilising the blood sugar levels. And because it helps you avoid those blood sugar highs and lows, having a bowl first thing in the morning can keep cravings at bay. Plus oatmeal may enhance your workout as consuming a bowl three hours prior to workout helps in boosting endurance. While buying oats, always buy in smaller quantities as this grain has a slightly higher fat content than other grains and will go rancid more quickly than other breakfast cereals. Oats are generally available in prepackaged containers as well as bulk bins. Just as with any other food ensure they are stored in airtight containers and have a good product turnover so as to ensure its maximum freshness. Whether purchasing oats in bulk, make sure they are kept away from moisture. Also one more thing to keep in mind while purchasing oats is to avoid those that contain sugar, salt or any other additives. These additions will bring down the nutritional aspect of the oats and will make them less healthy for you. Cocoa Oatmeal Muffins Ingredients All-purpose flour 1 1/4 cup Castor sugar 1 cup Oats 1/2 cup Cocoa powder 1/3 cup Chocolate chips 1/4 cup Baking powder 1 tsp Salt 1 tsp Eggs 2 no Low fat milk 1 cup Butter, unsalted 1/2 cup Vanilla extracts 1 tsp Almonds, chopped 1/4 cup For Honey Spread Unsalted butter 1/2 cup Honey 1/4 cup Method Sift together flour, sugar, oats, cocoa, baking powder and salt in a clean mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk eggs, milk, melted butter and vanilla till the sugar is dissolved. Add the prepared milk mixture and nuts to the dry mixture all at once and stir till moistened. Do not over mix. Spoon the batter into 12 greased muffin cups and sprinkle the chocolate chips on top. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 18-20 minutes or until cooked. Check by piercing the muffin with knife, if the knife comes out clean it is cooked. Allow to cool down for 10 minutes and prepare a honey spread by combining melted butter and honey until smooth. Serve with tea or coffee. Note: While the muffins are being baked, do not open the oven door often to check it as it will lower down the internal oven temperature and the baking will take longer and can impact the muffin texture and volume. You can also bake this recipe in a cake mould to get a cake instead of the muffins and garnish with chocolate.
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