Sunday, March 27, 2011
a new take on oatmeal!
After writing my Heart Health Blog recently, I got to thinking about ways that I try to keep my heart healthy. I started eating oatmeal regularly a few months ago. I initially started it because I knew it was healthy and more filling then the toast and juice I had been eating. At first, I wasn't thrilled about the taste. I knew the instant oatmeal packets weren't good for me because of the high sodium and sugar content, so I went for the quick whole oats. I will admit that it was pretty bland until I started sprucing it up a bit. I talked about some of those ways in my Natural Sweeteners blog. Some of my favorite things to add to it are: pure maple syrup or raw honey, 1/2 of a mashed banana and cinnamon. Cinnamon alone has several great health benefits. Taking 1/2 tsp. a day can help to lower bad cholesterol, regulate blood sugar levels, and can increase cognitive functioning and memory. Cinnamon has also been used in cancer research, has anti-clotting components in the blood and is a good source of fiber, iron and calcium. When mixed with a tablespoon of honey before breakfast, cinnamon has been known to help with arthritis pain.
I mix my oatmeal with water and microwave it for 50 seconds. I finish it with a sprinkle of flax seed, which is a great source of omega 3s and doesn't change the taste. I also add Protein after I heat it, which helps to keep me going and full for quite awhile. I am a mom of a toddler and a baby, so the extra boost of energy is much appreciated in my busy days!
Instead of water, my husband has also made a baked oatmeal by adding eggs and milk and cooking them slowly. I haven't tried this yet myself, mostly because of the time factor with my kiddos, but he said it was really good and filled him up until lunchtime.
So if you are looking for a tasty, quick and healthy breakfast option, I would encourage you to take a look at oatmeal. With the right additions, it may just give you what you are looking for:)
Thanks for reading and have a great and healthy week!!