We hear and read a lot about oats being a natural weight loss food. Oats do help in reducing hunger as the soluble fibre in oats fills you up by creating gels. The gels delay stomach emptying, so you feel full longer, which helps with weight loss. Eating a bowl of oatmeal in the morning can easily help you increase your intake of whole grains too.
But there is also confusion regarding which oats to buy/eat because there are:
1)oat bran; 2)rolled oats; 3)quick oats and 4)instant oats available. Cooking time and texture are the only differences among the varieties.
Oat bran is the bran of the oat grain. It is the outer layer of the oat kernel, where much of the fibre and many of the nutrients reside. Oat bran contains the same nutrients and fiber found in whole oats but they are more concentrated. Rolled oats contain the bran along with the rest of the oat kernel. Rolled oats are steamed and flattened between steel rollers, so they take about five minutes to cook. Quick oats are cut into smaller pieces before being rolled, so they cook very quickly, in about a minute. Instant oats are precooked and pressed so thin it takes only boiling water to cook them. Generally, they have a lot of added sodium.
Tip: Store oats in a dark, dry location in a well-sealed container. Oats will keep up to a year.
Both oat bran and rolled/quick oats can be used in baking.
Chef Sanjeev Kapoor is the most celebrated face of Indian cuisine. He is Chef extraordinaire, runs a successful TV Channel FoodFood, hosted Khana Khazana cookery show on television for more than 17 years, author of 150+ best selling cookbooks, restaurateur and winner of several culinary awards. He is living his dream of making Indian cuisine the number one in the world and empowering women through power of cooking to become self sufficient. His recipe portal www.sanjeevkapoor.com is a complete cookery manual with a compendium of more than 10,000 tried & tested recipes, videos, articles, tips & trivia and a wealth of information on the art and craft of cooking in both English and Hindi.