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Fuel Up With Oats

Oats make for a nutritious meal or snack at any time of day. Whole grain oats are easy to find and are packed full of nutrients! 


There’s a lot to prepare and adapt to with this year’s school scheduling, and establishing a nutritious morning routine is no exception! A healthy, balanced breakfast is a great way to help children kick-start their mornings and be fuelled for their busy days ahead.  


Complex carbohydrates, such as whole grain oats, are an important component of a nutritious breakfast. They’re found in foods that are broken down by the body into glucose, a type of simple sugar used to produce energy that fuels the body and brain.  It’s because of this that complex carbohydrates help your child to not only feel fuller for longer, but to also have the energy they need to concentrate and learn.


Whole grain oats offer fibre, protein, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals.  They are nutrient-packed and lower the risk of chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease.  Eating oats can help to aid digestion, promote fullness, regulate blood sugar, control cholesterol levels, and stimulate gut health.  Because oats also contain high amounts of antioxidants, they can even help to reduce inflammation. 


There are many different types of oats, such as rolled and steel cut. While different kinds of oats have different textures and cooking times, most oats are sold as unrefined.  This means they remain rich in fibre and nutrients, even after processing.  


Oats are extremely versatile and can be used in both sweet and savory recipes.  Here are a few ways to include more oats in your day! 

  1. For Breakfast: Try plain oats and have children flavour their own oatmeal with toppings like fruit, seeds, and nut butters. 
  2. In Baking: Oats can be blended into oat flour and used to prepare baked goods, including cookies! 
  3. As a topping: Add baked oats on yogurt, ice-cream, or cold cereal for an extra crunch.
  4. Overnight oats: Oats can be prepared the night before and refrigerated to help tackle busy mornings!

Choose oats for a nutritious meal or snack. They’ll keep your kids satisfied and ready to learn!


Written by: Julia Hop Hing, BASc. (c)

Reviewed by: Mirieta Selimovska, MHSc. (c)

 

References:

Dietitians of Canada. (2019, January 29). All about oats. Retrieved from https://www.unlockfood.ca/en/Articles/Heart-Health/All-About-Oats.aspx


Healthline. (2019, May 17). Oats 101: nutrition facts and health benefits. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/foods/oats


KidsHealth. (2017, April). Learning about carbohydrates. Retrieved from https://kidshealth.org/en/kids/carb.html#:~:text=When%20it%20goes%20more%20slowly,rise%20more%20quickly%20than%20others.


The Whole Grain Council. (n.d.). Oats – January grain of the month. Retrieved from https://wholegrainscouncil.org/whole-grains-101/grain-month-calendar/oats-%E2%80%93-january-grain-month


The Whole Grain Council. (n.d.). Types of oats. Retrieved from https://wholegrainscouncil.org/whole-grains-101/easy-ways-enjoy-whole-grains/grain-month-calendar/oats-%E2%80%93-january-grain-month/types