I love oatmeal. Seriously. I think it's great and everyone in the family seems to dig it too. We fly through the huge canisters of Meijer's Natural Rolled Oatmeal once a week...or more. I started keeping it around when I learned that it was really good for milk production. I've been eating it once every morning for a while now, and my favorite thing about it? I feel full, but it doesn't weigh me down.
My second favorite thing is the many ways you can make it!! I love mine plain with a little (organic) brown sugar. Not too much, just enough to make it sweet. The other day, Carrie and I were eating Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies (MmmmMmmm - my favorite!) and I said, "I wonder if you put chocolate chips on your oatmeal if it would taste like these cookies". Turns out, it does! but, you have to put them on top, not mix them in. If you mix them in it becomes chocolate oatmeal. Not my style (though I LOVE my chocolate - ask anyone).
So, with my love for oatmeal in mind, I decided to do some homework and find out what other benefits my family and I are getting from our daily ingestion of it. Here's some of what I found:
- Oatmeal is the only whole grain food recognized by the FDA to lower cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease. Heart Disease is the NUMBER ONE killer of women.
- May reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and certain cancers.
- Eating Oatmeal makes you feel full longer, making it easier to stick to a diet.
- Helps reduce high blood pressure - even more than whole wheat, rice or corn.
- Oatmeal contains a huge variety of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. It is a good source of protein, complex carbohydrates and iron (which is great for me because I am slightly anemic).
It's interesting that I dig into this information right now as I just received an E mail from Hop Scotch Childrens Store (Down on Cherry Street in Grand Rapids, MI.) that had an invite to an event the stores in the district is having to raise heart disease awareness. I sent the e mail to the women on my contact list and a bunch of us are going. I am really looking forward to it! (Free massage?! Are you kidding me, of COARSE I'm going!)
So, oatmeal is great. Not only good for us, but can be made to fit anyone's taste!You can put anything in it to make it fabulous, and the texture is even customizable. I like mine fairly thin but not runny. I will not microwave it because microwaves freak me out, so I use a kettle on the stove. I really like it this way, I think it tastes better and it's definitely less clumpy and thick. I put brown sugar in it pretty much every time, but I vary between other additions. Here are a few of my favorites:
- Aw, Nuts! Walnuts, Pecans, Macadamia, YOU NAME IT. They are all good. (That's what she said.)
- Maple Syrup - not pancake syrup - maple syrup. you know, the real (and yes, I know, expensive) stuff.
- Dried Cranberries or Raisins.
- Fruit - Bananas, Apples, etc.
- Cinnamon and Sugar
- Hemp Seeds (GREAT for Omega 3's!)
- Chocolate Chips, or any other kind or chips.
What about you? Do you eat oatmeal? How do you like it??