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Oatmeal Isn't Just for Grandma Anymore

My dad, who is 80 years old, eats oatmeal every day for breakfast without fail.  He takes bags of it traveling with him and while he now uses a microwave instead of a pot, not much has changed since he started eating it as a toddler.

For years, I saw oatmeal as a great breakfast for seniors but I was far cooler than that.  Apparently, the apple doesn't actually fall far from the tree.  Starting in my 30's, oatmeal also became my go-to.  The oatmeal I eat though is a far-cry from what my Dad eats every day - what our family lovingly refers to as "Brown Sugar Soup".  He wants quick flakes, a touch of salt, milk and brown sugar - LOTS of brown sugar.  At least these days he has agreed to add chia seeds to his "soup" for added Omegas and fibre.

This is where it comes in handy to own a food company with a lot of great ingredients at my fingertips!  I love to use rolled oats, flax or chia seed, sunflower seeds, coconut and fresh berries with a touch of soy milk and some maple sugar chunks and I might put pecans on top since my daughter isn't allergic to those.  I'll take our Libre Naturals oatmeal mixes and make muesli (or what's named in modern parlance as "overnight oats").  I add in my favourite coconut-based non-dairy yogurt and soy milk plus sunflower seeds, flaxseeds, coconut, cinnamon, diced apple and sometimes unsweetened coconut flakes.  I top with fresh berries or often make a mixed berry coulis to add on top (frozen/fresh berries, lemon juice, sugar to taste and simmered until slightly thickened).

Not only do I love the taste, I get both hot and cold options, and they can be quick when I've got a week's worth mixed up and ready to go.  And they both hold me well until lunch time.

But with the rise of keto diets and more and more headlines proclaiming one diet or another where even whole grain carbohydrates are limited, I sometimes wonder if I should be eating that much oats these days.

And then came this great article written by a nutritionist last week on Health.com that put all my fears to rest.  Indeed, she writes that there are 5 reasons to make oatmeal a staple of your diet, even beyond breakfast.  You can read the article here:  Is Oatmeal Healthy?

In brief, here are the 5 reasons in the article you should eat more oatmeal:

  1. Oatmeal is nutrient-rich
  2. Oatmeal provides antioxidants
  3. Oatmeal supports weight control
  4. Oatmeal's beta-glucan fiber is health protective (and is a prebiotic)
  5. Oatmeal may help you live longer

So there you have it!  Notwithstanding that no nutritionist would condone my Dad's brown sugar soup, oatmeal really can help you meet a wide variety of health goals.  So it's not old-fashioned, not just for grandma (or grandpa) and can be enjoyed in sweet or savoury ways.  What's not to like?

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