Oats – A Fantastic Meal

by Jerem on July 14, 2013

The common Oat (Avena Sativa) was most likely a weed before it was domesticated and cultivation began in the bronze age – approximately 2,000 B.C. It is one of the oldest grains found in ancient Egypt and has also been found in ancient Europe. It is believed to have originated in Asia Minor, but it quickly spread far and wide.

Oats first came to North America in 1602. They were first grown in the Elizabeth Islands, off the coast of Massachusetts. George Washington planted 580 acres of Oats in 1786. By the late 1870s, oat production had moved to the middle and upper Mississippi, which remains a major area of oat production today.

Unlike wheat and barley, which have always been primarily for human consumption, oats were originally domesticated and cultivated as animal feed. Oats are commonly fed to horses and livestock when extra carbohydrates, and the subsequent boost in energy, are required. Human consumption has varied over time, with the first oat bread made in Britain in the 19th century. In Scotland, oats were, and still are, a mainstay of the national diet.

Oat bran, the outer casing of the oat, has received considerable attention from the Medical Community because of its ability to help reduce blood cholesterol. Beta glucans is a water-soluble fiber that is found in oats and helps in reducing “bad” cholesterol and prevents heart disease.

Studies reported that beta-glucan also enhances the human immune system in fighting back bacterial infection. Studies also proved that beta-glucan is beneficial to people who are suffering type 2 diabetes. Regularly consuming oatmeal or oat bran has been shown to lower blood sugar.

Other uses of oats include treatments for dry skin, usually mixed with other ingredients. It is also a topical treatment for eczema.

School of Natural HealingOats have been found to be a good treatement for depression as well. Oats help relax the brain and calm the nervous system. Another interesting tidbit on oats is that it is also used to increase sexual desire and performance – the natural Viagra. This effect is very well-known in the animal world, especially among horse breeders.

Oats are rich in carbohydrates and soluble fiber, they also contain high levels of Iron, Zinc and Manganese. Oats also contain globulin a major source of protein. Studies show it is equal to soy, meat, milk, and egg protein. So as an alternative to meat and dairy, oats are a fantastic source of protein.

Oats can be prepared in a variety of ways for cereals, baked goods, porridges, stuffings, and other delicisous recipes. Oat groats are a popular and very nutritious breakfast ceral today. The groat is simply the hulled kernals of the grain which includes the cereal germ, the fiber rich bran, as well as the endosperm.

For a fantastic breakfast fill a thermos about 1/3 full of oat groats and then pour hot water in to fill it the rest of the way.   Let it sit overnight. For breakfast in the morning drizzle some honey on top, add cinnamon, and some berries and you will have delicious, healthy, nutricious oat groat cereal.

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