Oatmeal. It’s a super easy way to get a hearty, balanced breakfast. It’s a great source of essential minerals. And it CAN be amazingly delicious.
The reason I say “can” is because there are so many times I’ve prepared one of those pre-made packets (gross), ordered oatmeal at a fast food chain or restaurant and it’s fell short of my expectations. The base is super bland and typically comes with your standard accoutrements (raisins, brown sugar, whole milk), which quite frankly takes a bit of the “good” out of “good oatmeal.” The health benefits make oatmeal a breakfast go-to…but drowning it in sugar and heavy dairy kind of defeats the purpose.
So everyone says oatmeal is really good for you and some go so far to say you should eat it everyday. But here’s the facts about WHY it’s good for you.
Oats are among the healthiest grains on earth. Oats are naturally Gluten-Free and incredibly nutritiously dense, making it a great way to start your day. On average, Pod Cafe’s steel-cut oatmeal (depending on the chosen flavor) contains approximately 30 grams of carbs, 20 grams of fat, 5 grams of protein, 4 grams of fiber, but only 300 calories.
Oats are rich in antioxidants, which can help lower blood pressure. A group of antioxidants called avenanthramides (exclusively found in oats) increase the production of nitric oxide, which helps dilate blood vessels and leads to better blood flow (1).
Oats contain a water-soluble fiber called Beta-Glucan. The benefits of beta-glucan include: Reduced LDL and cholesterol levels (2), Reduced blood sugar (3), Increased feeling of fullness (4), and increased growth of good bacteria in the digestive tract (5). This is all good stuff.
Oats are great for nursing Mamas. The benefits that oatmeal provides for Mom’s and their little ones is actually pretty amazing. 1. Its inherent nutrients (saponin, zinc, manganese and calcium to name a few) help with milk production (6). 2. Reduced levels of iron, which some nursing mom’s experience, can lead to milk production challenges. Oats can help with that by raising those levels to make it easier during feeding time (7). 3. Oxytocin and relaxin are calming side effects of eating one bowl a day of oatmeal. Both stimulate milk production and help with flow…making the breastfeeding experience that much more enjoyable (and less stressful) (8).
Athletes swear by it. Oatmeal just may be the new Wheaties™ for athletes. As a pre- or post-workout meal, the carbs in oatmeal provide lasting energy for your workout and helps fuel recovery without causing a sugar crash (9), which other foods or energy drinks can cause.
“I’ve asked a lot of elite endurance athletes about their breakfast foods, particularly before races, and oatmeal comes up again and again and again,” says Matt Fitzgerald, endurance coach, nutritionist, and author of The Endurance Diet (9).
Crossfit athletes Brent Fikowski, Camille Leblanc-Bazinet and Annie Thorisdottir are just a few who swear by oatmeal as their complex carb in the morning (10). Gwen Jorgensen, two-time ITU World Triathlon Series champion, says oatmeal is her breakfast staple every morning (9). And snowboard gold medalist Jamie Anderson is also an avid oatmeal eater before she hits the pipes (11).
It’s not just for breakfast. As long as the amount of calories you are burning throughout the day isn’t MORE than what you consume in calories, the myth of not eating before bed is in fact just a myth. The catch: complex carbs are what is recommended if you are looking for a late night snack. And what food is a great source of complex carbs? You guessed it…oatmeal (12).
The “Pod-Perfect” Oatmeal:
When we started Pod Cafe, it was a no-brainer that our flagship product would be amazingly tasty oatmeal. Allen, our chef, spent nearly 3 years fine-tuning our oatmeal to give it the perfect blend of hearty and tasty.
What makes our oatmeal so good?
- All our oatmeal is freshly made in batches, often just hours before it goes out for delivery. No added preservatives means a shorter shelf life, but a superior product.
- Keep it simple. Oatmeal is an inherently healthy grain and we accentuate what it is vs. trying to make it something it’s not.
- The majority of our flavors contain 3-4oz of fresh fruit, which is offered seasonally so we can guarantee the freshest fruits everyday.
- We prioritize both nutrition AND taste. Each serving contains approximately .5oz of organic maple syrup. The general rule is: any food is okay in moderation. In our case, syrup is used as a flavor enhancer, not a sugar additive.
- It tastes SO good. Allen spends hours making each batch and it’s unlike any other oatmeal you’ve ever tasted. Trust me.
Why did we choose to make ours with steel-cut oats?
Steel-cut oats take longer to cook, but contain the most nutrients (and antinutrients such as phytic acid), and taste nuttier than conventional oats. It has the most ‘chew’ of any of the common oat varieties, which makes it the heartier option. It’s a more dense oat, meaning it takes longer to digest and leaves you feeling fuller for longer.
Are you going to have to overpay for yet another “healthy” food option?
Nope! Our Pod Cafe oatmeal (no matter what flavor you choose) is VERY affordable. $5.50 for an 8oz serving to be exact. At Pod Cafe, we want to bring the healthy to our customers without gutting their bank accounts. Healthy can tend to equal expensive in today’s market…but that’s not what we’re about.