February 7, 2023

Oatmeal, a staple in most American kitchens, may just be the quintessential breakfast food.
Tasty, nutritious and affordable, it’s a healthy start, or end, to the day. With a bit of creativity, you can transform your oatmeal from bland to flavorful.
In order to make oatmeal into a balanced meal that will keep you fueled, here are some ways to fortify your bowl.
Oats. The type you choose can make or break the nutrition quotient of your breakfast. For a fiber-laden, cholesterol-lowering boost, start with steel cut or old-fashioned rolled oats.
These heartier choices “stick to your ribs.” They also provide a source of whole grains to your diet. Although instant oats are convenient, they don’t hold much nutritional value.
Try baked or crock-pot oatmeal recipes that can be dished up and eaten immediately or taken to work all week.
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Protein. Adding a hit of protein to the slow carbs in oats will help regulate your blood sugar.
Instead of adding water, try cooking your cereal in cow’s milk or a protein rich plant-based alternative, like organic soy or pea milk.
Another option is to add a scoop or two of protein powder.
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Healthy fat. This will add staying power to your meal. Good fat sources include nuts, nut butters, seeds (flax, hemp, chia) and coconut flakes.
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Fruit. Chock full of fiber, as well as antioxidants and inflammation fighters, delicious fruit ideas include cherries, berries, pomegranate seeds and pumpkin puree.
Spices. For an extra shot of flavor, add cinnamon, nutmeg or cocoa powder. Spices also assist the fruit in combating disease and inflammation.
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Overnight Oatmeal
Combine all ingredients in a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker. Turn heat to low. Cook 7-8 hours until oats are tender and creamy. (Once served, mix in a protein powder and top with pecans.)
Debbie DeAngelo, R.N., is certified in women’s health and is a holistic health coach. She can be reached at debbie@healthonheels.com.


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