There’s a reason why Oats are an essential component of every weight loss diet. They’re very high in minerals, vitamins, and fiber content. Having one bowl of oats can keep you full throughout the day. Plus, they boast a host of other health benefits. However, what’s the best oatmeal for weight loss? This article looks at different types of oats, health benefits, the best oats for weight loss, and some tips to help you lose weight fast.
Oats & Nutritional Content
Oats are one of the healthiest foods for weight loss and general health. Oatmeal contains soluble fiber in beta-glucans, which makes it an ideal food to eat in the morning. Soluble fiber dissolves easily in water and forms a gel-like substance when it comes in contact with stomach acids. The gel delays the emptying of your stomach, making you feel full for longer. This is one of the reasons why oats are so effective for weight loss.
As for the nutritional content of oats, 100 g of raw oat groats contains:
- Calories – 353 Kcal
- Carbohydrates – 71 g
- Fiber – 12.8 g
- Protein – 9.8 g
- Fat – 4.5 g
- Sodium – 18mg
- Potassium – 851 mg
- Calcium – 46 mg
- Iron – 3.1 ug
- Magnesium – 126 mg
- Phosphorus – 393 mg
- Manganese – 0.8 mg
- Copper – 0.1mg
Health Benefits of Oats for Weight Loss
Oats are considered one of the healthiest foods in the world, and here are some of the reasons you should include oats in your weight loss diet.
#1 May reduce blood pressure
If you have high blood pressure, oats can reduce the risk of this condition. This is because they contain high levels of magnesium and potassium. These nutrients work to relax blood vessels and decrease the risk for hypertension.
#2 May help to reduce cholesterol levels
Oats also contain a chemical known as beta-glucan, which reduces cholesterol levels by 10-15%. The soluble fiber in oatmeal also helps reduce bad cholesterol and thereby reduces the risk of heart attacks and strokes, which are caused due to formation of clots in arteries.
#3 May keep you feeling full for longer
The soluble fiber content in oats helps regulate blood sugar levels, thereby reducing food cravings, which are one of the reasons for weight gain. Oats can be considered a healthy option for weight loss because they help to keep you feeling full.
#4 May improve cardiovascular health
The beta-glucans found in oats are recognized as cholesterol-lowering agents by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). They also help reduce blood sugar levels, which lowers the risk of Type 2 Diabetes and heart disease.
#5 May prevent constipation
The insoluble fiber content in oats helps prevent constipation and other related problems such as hemorrhoids, stomach ulcers, etc.
#6 May help keep skin healthy
Oats contain a chemical called avenanthramide, an antioxidant that offers protection from harmful free radicals and prevents various skin conditions such as acne, psoriasis, etc.
#7 May help to regulate blood sugar levels
Oats are considered healthy carbs because they take a longer time for digestion and release sugar slowly into the bloodstream, preventing the sharp rise in glucose level and improving insulin sensitivity. Therefore, oats not only offer weight loss benefits but also reduce the chances of diabetes.
#8 Keep You full
Oats are very effective for weight loss as they can absorb water up to eleven times their weight. This means that when oat-based foods are consumed, you end up feeling full because of the texture. They are also slow-digesting and slowly release energy into your body that keeps you full for longer periods.
Types of Oats
Following are the different types of oats and their nutritional content:
• Rolled (Old-fashioned) Oatmeal 100g of oats contains 343 calories, out of which 51.7g are carbohydrates, mostly complex carbs. Oats are rich in dietary fiber, B Vitamins, Magnesium, Iron, Zinc, Phosphorus, Copper, Manganese. The oats are low in fat and have zero cholesterol. They are considered to be one of the healthiest foods in the world.
• Steel Cut Oatmeal 100g of Steel cut oats has 334 calories, 51g is carbs, and 13g is dietary fiber. The rest of the nutritional content is the same as that of above mentioned old-fashion oats. They have a chewy consistency because they are not rolled flat like old-fashioned oats. Steel-cut oats are also known as Scottish or Irish Oats. They can be used to make porridge, cookies, bread, scones, etc.
• Instant Oatmeal 100g of instant oatmeal has 322 calories, out of which 56g comes from carbohydrates. The rest of the nutritional content is the same as that of old-fashioned oats. The main advantage of instant oatmeal is that it can be made quickly by adding hot water into the packet and waiting for a few minutes. Most instant oatmeal packages are fortified with vitamins and minerals, making them more nutritious than steel-cut oats or rolled oats.
• Scottish Oatmeal 100g of Scottish oats contains 401 calories, 59g are carbs. The rest of the nutritional content is the same as that of old-fashioned oats. Scottish oats are made by combining both steel cut and rolled oats together. So, the nutritional content is almost similar to that of above mentioned rolled oats.
The Best Oatmeal for weight loss & Bodybuilding
As different types of oats are processed differently, they have slight differences when it comes to digestion. So which one of the above-mentioned oat types is best for weight loss and building muscle? Here’s how to choose the ideal one for your diet plan:
OATS FOR WEIGHT LOSS
When weight loss rolled oats, instant oats work best. Both these types of oats dissolve quickly in water and do not require any pre-soaking time. This makes them ideal for busy people. They also contain a good amount of soluble fiber, which means you will feel full quickly and for a longer time. In addition, oats are low in fat and have zero cholesterol. The only disadvantage of these oats is that they lack essential fats.
OATS FOR BUILDING MUSCLES
If you plan to build muscles, steel-cut oats or Scottish oats would be ideal as they provide more energy and help you maintain it for longer durations. They also provide good amounts of protein and essential fats, which are needed for building muscles. Steel-cut oats can also be used to make protein shakes, unlike rolled oats.
OATS FOR BOTH HEALTH BENEFITS
If you want results from weight loss and muscle building, you can include two types of oats in your diet. You can add steel-cut oats to your protein shakes and add rolled or Scottish oats to your shakes. You can also use rolled oats for making desserts like cookies, slices of bread, or scones, which can be used as snacks between your meals.
Oats as Everyday Food
OATS AS BREAKFAST
Oats are a great choice for breakfast. Cook steel-cut or Scottish oats with hot water in a small pot and add some nuts after a few minutes. You can also add honey and some fruit to improve the taste.
OATS FOR DESSERTS
If you are not much of a breakfast person, then rolled or Scottish oats can be used to make healthy desserts. All it takes is just adding some nuts, dried fruits, cocoa powder, honey, etc., along with spices like cinnamon, cardamom powder, etc. You can also add some vegetables or fruits to increase the nutritional content.
OATS FOR BAKING
If you are planning to bake cookies, loaves of bread, or scones, then go for rolled and Scottish oats as they can be easily added in them without any pre-soaking time.
General Tips: How to Eat Oats for Weight loss and muscle gain
1 – Skip Flavored Oats
Flavored oats are high in sugars and other preservatives, which further makes them unhealthy.
2 – Start with Plain Oats
This is a general tip for any food item. Before you start eating it every day, try eating it every alternate day only to see if your body reacts well with it or not.
3 – Mind your Portion Size
Around 40-50g of rolled oats is ideal for weight loss. If you are eating steel-cut or Scottish oats, then around 60-70g will be enough to satiate your hunger and provide a good amount of energy.
4 – Avoid too much Snacking
Snacks can often be the main cause of overeating, so try keeping away from snacks and eating oats only for breakfast and lunch.
5 – Avoid surgery toppings
Oats are healthy when cooked only in water with no extra flavorings, so avoid toppings like chocolate, honey, or any other sugar-based syrup.
That’s all about oats and their health benefits to reduce weight and gain muscle. Now you know which type of oats will be best for weight loss and building muscles. Your choice should be based on your oatmeal diet plan to get maximum results in a minimum time.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Is Oatmeal good for weight loss?
Of course, Oatmeal is considered one of the best food for weight loss.
What are rolled oats?
These are old-fashioned oats. They are lightly processed, flat, and a bit flaky. They also absorb more water than steel-cut oats.
How many calories are in Oatmeal?
Well, that depends on the oat type and the food you are pairing it with. Please take a look at all the different types of oats and their calorie content in our article above.
Does Oatmeal have protein?
Yes, oats are a very good resource of quality protein. It has about 11-17 % protein of dry weight.