Health Benefits Oats, Nutrition Facts - Dietary and other Uses of Oats

Oats are a humble and unassuming cereal grain that most people know as oatmeal or rolled oats. Even if people don't buy oatmeal for home cooking, oats are everywhere in breakfast cereals, cookies biscuits, slices, energy bars, breads and cakes.

Oatmeal is also widely used as a skin and hair treatment.

So why has a common horse food suddenly become a favorite cereals grains?

The answer is that oats are cheap, versatile and are very beneficial to health and well-being.

Oats are rich in dietary fiber, B group and other vitamins, phyochemicals and oat products conatin lots or minerals.

Research has linked eating oats regularly with benefits to digestion and the intestine, heart health, blood sugar, lowering cholesterol, antioxidant properties and weight loss.

This article provides detailed nutrition data for oats in convenient charts.

The nutrients in oats are compared with those in other common grains: buckwheat, quinoa, rye, wheat, barley, and corn (maize).

Oatmeal is a very commonly used grain with a wide variety of culinary and medicinal uses
Oatmeal is a very commonly used grain with a wide variety of culinary and medicinal uses | Source
Granola made from Oatmeal
Granola made from Oatmeal | Source
Oatmeal, raisin and pecan cookie
Oatmeal, raisin and pecan cookie | Source

Health Benefits of Oats and Oatmeal

Fiber Content of Oats

Oats are a great source of dietary fiber (7g of fiber in 100 g of oats; about 10% of the daily requirements for men and women).

One cup of oats have the same fiber content and 2 slices of wholemeal bread, one cup brown rice and corn and one Apple, Banana, Orange, Pear, and one cup of Blueberries or Strawberries.

Oats are unique in having a soluble fiber compound called beta-glucan. This compound is known to inhibit cholesterol re-absorption in the gut and thus reduces total and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels in the blood. This is great for reducing your risk of cardiovascular disease.

Role of Oats in Lowering Cholesterol

Research has shown that people with high cholesterol levels in their blood, who ate just 3 grams of soluble oat fiber per day (equivalent to one bowl of oatmeal) reduced their cholesterol levels by up to about 25 %.

Benefits of Oats for Weight Loss

There have been many claims about this, but the way it works is simple. Oatmeal fills you up with fiber and bulk so that you are less likely to eat other foods. Oatmeal takes a long time to digest and so it helps to suppress appetite for longer. Beware of commercial muesli and granolas that have added fats and sugars. It is far better to make your own.

Benefits of Oats for Heart Health

A study involving 10,000 people, published in the prestigious journal, Archives of Internal Medicine, found that the group of subjects who ate 21 grams of fiber per day, had about 10-15% less cardiovascular disease and coronary disease symptoms compared to those eating 5 grams daily.

Role of Oats in Stabilizing Blood Sugar Levels

In various studies, Type 2 diabetes patients given oatmeal foods showed lower levels of blood sugar compared to those who were given white rice or bread. Another study found that the risk of type 2 diabetes was about one third less in black women who frequently ate whole grains in their diet. Daily consumption of low-fat dairy foods was linked to a 13% lower risk of type 2 diabetes.

Phytochemicals and Antioxidants in Oats

Oats are rich in phytochemicals that play a role in reducing blood pressure and are also antioxidants.

Nutrition Data for Oatmeal (100 g)

Nutrient (Serving 100g)
Amount
% Rec. Daily Allowance
Calories (Cal)
379 (1587 kJ)
19%
Calories from Carbohydrate
279 (1168 kJ)
 
Calories from Fat
54.6 (229 kJ)
 
Calories from Protein
45.5 (190 kJ)
 
Total Carbohydrate
69.0 g
23%
Dietary Fiber
10.1 g
40%
Sugars
1.0 g
 
Starch
57.9 g
 
Protein
13.1 g
26%
Total Fat
6.5 g
10%
Saturated Fat
1.1 g
6%
Monounsaturated Fat
2.0 g
 
Polyunsaturated Fat
2.3 g
 
Total Omega-3 fatty acids
100 mg
 
Total Omega-6 fatty acids
2200 mg
 
Vitamins
 
 
Vitamin A
0 IU
0%
Vitamin C
O.Omg
0%
Vitamin E
0.4 mg
2%
Vitamin K
2.0 mcg
2%
Thiamin
0.5 mg
31%
Riboflavin
0.2 mg
9%
Niacin
1.1 mg
6%
Vitamin B6
0.1 mg
5%
Folate
32.0 mcg
8%
Vitamin B12
0.0 mcg
0%
Pantothenic Acid
1.1 mg
11%
Choline
40.4 mg
 
Minerals
 
 
Calcium
52.0 mg
5%
Iron
4.3 mg
24%
Magnesium
138 mg
34%
Phosphorus
410 mg
41%
Potassium
362 mg
10%
Sodium
6.0 mg
0%
Zinc
3.6 mg
24%
Copper
0.4 mg
20%
Manganese
3.5 mg
181%
Selenium
28.9 mcg
41%

Nutrition Facts for Oatmeal (100g)

The table opposite summarizes the nutrition data for 100g of oatmeal.

Oatmeal is relatively high in calories with 100 g providing:

  • 38 Calories which is about 20% of daily needs.
  • Oatmeal is also very high in fiber with about 10 g in 100g, and also protein (13 g), both of which represent about 25% of daily needs.
  • Fat content is relatively high at 6.5 g per 100g.
  • The Vitamin B group vitamins are high in oatmeal, especially Thiamin 0.5 mg (31% DV); Riboflavin 0.2 mg (9%); Niacin 1.1 mg (6%); Vitamin B6 0.1 mg (5%); Folate 32.0 mcg (8%); Pantothenic Acid 1.1 mg (11%).
  • Oatmeal is relatively rich in Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc, Copper, Manganese and Selenium


Comparison with Other Grains

The table below compares the nutrients in 100 g of oatmeal with similar quantity of other similar grains.

Oatmeal is relatively richer in:

  • Calories, protein, fat and fiber
  • Most B group vitamins
  • Calcium, Iron, Phosporus, Zinc, Copper, Manganese
  • Saturated Fat - being almost double that in other grains apart from corn

Oatmeal is relatively poor in:

  • Selenium, Sodium
  • Vitamins A, E and K
  • Dietary fiber is similar to that in rye and barley

Tips for Preparing and Cooking Oats and the Many Uses for Oatmeal

For all types of oats, including rolled oats, it is best to add the oats to cold water and then cook at a simmer. They can also be cooked in a microwave oven.

Many Ways to Enjoy Rolled Oats and Oatmeal

  • Make your own museli using rolled oats, wheat germ, bran and a variety of dried (or fresh) fruit and nuts. Adding milk and heating for about two minutes takes away the raw taste and make the dish more palatable.
  • Add Oatmeal to cookies and slices and also to homemade energy and granola bars.
  • Add oat flour rolled oats or whole oats to bread and muffin recipes.
  • Sprinkle oat bran or rolled oats on hot or cold cereal, including commercial varieties to reduce their calorie density and boost the fiber in the meal
  • Make a healthy breakfast smoothie by adding rolled oats to the mixture.

Nutrition Data for Oats Compared with Other Grains

Nutrient (Serving Size 100g)
oats
buckwheat
quinoa
rye
wheat, durum
barley, pearled
corn
Calories (Cal)
390
344
369
338
340
352
364
Protein (g)
16.9
13.25
14.2
10.34
13.69
9.92
9.42
Total Fat (g)
6.9
3.41
6.11
1.63
2.48
1.16
4.75
Total Carbs (g)
66.28
71.51
64.54
75.86
71.13
77.72
74.27
Dietary Fiber (g)
10.51
9.88
7.1
15.15
 
15.60
7.23
Sugar (g)
 
 
 
0.97
 
0.80
0.65
Vitamins
 
 
 
 
 
 
0.00
Vitamin C (mg)
0
0
 
0
0
0.00
0.00
Thiamin (mg)
0.76
0.1
0.36
0.32
0.42
0.19
0.39
Riboflavin (mg)
0.14
0.43
0.32
0.25
0.12
0.11
0.20
Niacin (mg)
0.96
7.02
1.53
4.27
6.74
4.60
3.63
Pantothenic Acid (mg)
1.35
1.23
0.78
1.46
0.94
0.28
0.42
Vitamin B6 (mg)
0.12
0.21
0.49
0.29
0.42
0.26
0.62
Folate (mcg)
56.41
30.59
184.62
37.87
43.75
24.00
19.28
Vitamin B12 (mcg)
0
0
0
0
0
0.00
0.00
Vitamin A (IU)
0
0
14
12
0
22
214
Vitamin E (mg)
 
 
2.46
0.85
 
0.02
0.48
Vitamin K (mcg)
 
 
0
5.92
 
2.20
0.24
Minerals
 
 
 
 
 
 
0.00
Calcium (mg)
53.85
18.82
47.34
23.67
33.33
28.00
7.23
Iron (mg)
4.72
2.21
4.59
2.63
3.52
2.50
2.70
Magnesium (mg)
176.92
230.59
198.82
108.88
143.75
80.00
127.71
Phosphorus (mg)
523.08
345.88
459.17
331.36
508.33
220.00
209.64
Potassium (mg)
428.21
461.18
565.68
508.88
431.25
280.00
286.75
Sodium (mg)
2.56
0
4.73
2.37
2.08
8.00
36.14
Zinc (mg)
3.97
2.4
3.12
2.65
4.17
2.12
2.22
Copper (mg)
0.63
1.1
0.59
0.37
0.55
0.42
0.31
Manganese (mg)
4.92
1.3
2.04
2.58
3.01
1.32
0.48
Selenium (mcg)
 
8.24
8.52
13.96
89.38
37.80
15.42
Fatty Acids
 
 
 
 
 
 
0.00
Saturated Fat (g)
1.22
0.74
0.71
0.2
0.45
0.24
0.67
Monounsat. Fat (g)
2.18
1.04
1.62
0.21
0.34
0.15
1.25
Polyunsat. Fat (g)
2.54
1.04
3.31
0
0.98
0.56
2.16

© 2013 Dr. John Anderson

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Comments 3 comments

Monis Mas profile image

Monis Mas 3 years ago

Great work, interesting and very useful. I love the photo of the cookie :-)


carol7777 profile image

carol7777 3 years ago from Arizona

I have a lot of oats in the pantry and was just going to make some oatmeal..Great ideas here. Voting UP.


vibesites profile image

vibesites 3 years ago from United States

I like oats. Good thing you give the props for that. I am impressed by the amount of research you've taken for this. Voted up and useful. :)

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