Benefits of Steel-Cut Oats

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Steel cut oats are an excellent source of protein, soluble and insoluble fiber and minerals.
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Among the steel-cut oats benefits, this food could be considered a "power food." They are an excellent source of protein, soluble and insoluble fiber and minerals.

Steel-cut oats are dense and chewy as a result of being passed through sharp, steel blades that cut them into thin slices that helps retain more fiber and protein. Steel-cut oats, just as any whole oats, make a healthy addition to your regular diet. For easy prep, try making steel-cut oats in an instant pot.

Just be aware — your oatmeal toppings could impact your steel-cut oats healthy recipe. Skip the butter, and add lowfat milk. Swap in fruit to sweeten your oats rather than sugar or syrups.

Read more: What Is the Nutritional Value of Oatmeal?

Compare the Oats

Steel-cut oats come from the same plant as rolled or instant oats and other oat products. The difference between steel-cut and rolled oats is in their processing.

Steel-cut oats are never cooked and start from the whole grain that is then passed through slender blades that cut the oat kernel into thin slices. Rolled or quick oats, prepared the old-fashioned way, are steamed and then rolled, according to Harvard School of Public Health.

The main difference between the two types of oats is its cooking time. Rolling the oat helps it to cook faster, in just a few minutes your bowl of oatmeal can be prepared. On the other hand, steel-cut oats could take 25 to 30 minutes to cook.

Find Your Fiber

According to the USDA, steel-cut oats calories clock in at only 150. They have 4 grams fiber per 1/4 cup dry oats, including 2 grams of insoluble fiber. The insoluble fiber in steel oats includes beta-glucan which is associated with improved blood sugar levels, according to a 2012 article published by Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism.

The authors report that consuming 5 grams of oat beta-glucan daily for 5 weeks improved blood sugar levels and insulin responses in individuals with high cholesterol. However, larger doses of oat beta-glucan are required to have the same effects on blood sugar for healthy individuals.

Include Oats for Protein

Steel-cut oats are a good source of protein providing 5 grams of protein per 1/4 cup serving, measured dry. The protein in steel-cut oats is complete, containing trace amounts of all the essential amino acids.

According to a February 2015 article published by Journal of Food Science and Technology, oats are higher in lysine — one of the essential amino acids that the body cannot produce — when compared to other grain cereals.

Read more: The 4 Best Instant Oatmeals (and 5 to Avoid)

Mind Your Minerals

Steel-cut oats are a whole grain product and as such are natural source of minerals, including iron and potassium.

According to the National Academies of Sciences, adult males need 8 milligrams of iron daily while women need 18 grams. There are 1.6 milligrams of iron per 1/4 cup of steel-cut oats.

The same serving provides 150 milligrams of potassium. Men need 3,400 milligrams of potassium per day and women need 2,600 milligrams. Add 1 cup of sliced banana to your steel-cut oats healthy recipe for an additional 537 milligrams of this mineral.

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