People love their oatmeal and for good reason! Not only is it delicious, but it has been found to help regulate digestion, improve gut health, manage weight, and even help improve heart health.
While oatmeal is already a great breakfast choice for a healthy heart, we wanted to find out how to make it even healthier!
“Oatmeal provides you with soluble fiber, which can help lower cholesterol when consumed regularly, but there are many ways to increase its heart health value with the toppings you choose,” says Amy Goodson, MS, RD, CSSD, LDauthor of The Sports Nutrition Playbook, and a member of our commission of medical experts.
Here’s what our dieticians say are the best oatmeal habits for your heart. So, for healthier heart advice, check out these 5 easy ways to lower cholesterol.
One of the best heart-healthy toppings you can include in your oatmeal are berries like strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries.
“Berries are high in soluble fiber that can help the heart by helping to lower total and bad cholesterol,” says Goodson. “The berries are also rich in antioxidants, which help buffer free (or bad) radicals that can cause damage to the body’s cells.”
Getting enough healthy fats in your diet on a daily basis can be a great way to take care of your heart, and if you choose the right ingredients, you’ll be able to do that with your morning oatmeal!
“Nuts and seeds are full of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which have protective benefits on the heart,” says Goodson. “Polyunsaturated fats, found particularly in nuts and seeds such as pumpkin, chia, flax and hemp, help buffer molecules that contribute to inflammation, so it could be said that they play a role in reducing inflammation in the body. nuts and seeds to oatmeal add crunchiness, increased satiety, as well as healthy fats and fiber. “
And if you’re looking for one of the biggest increases in healthy fat, try walnuts in particular.
“Walnuts provide an excellent source of ALA (2.5 g / 1 oz), a plant-based omega-3 fatty acid,” says medical expert Lauren Manaker, MS, RDN, author of The recipe book of the mother’s first pregnancy And Feeding male fertility. “Recent data published in Advances in Nutrition shows that eating more plant-based omega-3 fatty acids can be a way to combat the risk of developing fatal heart disease. “
Oatmeal is a delicious morning treat, but what if you didn’t have to limit oats to just breakfast?
“Many people think of oatmeal only in the morning, but you can mix things up and eat energetic bites of oatmeal all day,” says Goodson. “Take your energy bites with oats as a base, add your favorite nut butter, honey, protein or collagen powder, then your favorite add-ons like nuts, seeds, dried fruit, coconut and even dark chocolate chips. Adding heart-healthy ingredients like these can make snack time a win for your heart health. “
Some people may only associate oatmeal with sweet ingredients, but many people are making their oatmeal flavorful these days. If you’re planning on eating salty oatmeal, try tossing an egg on it to add nutrients.
“Eggs are recommended for healthy adults as part of a heart-healthy eating pattern according to the American Heart Association,” says Manaker. “In addition, eggs contain many vitamins and minerals for a healthy life such as choline and iodine, and are also a complete protein. Infinitely versatile, eggs can be scrambled, boiled, poached or fried and added on top of tasty flour. ‘oats. Or just mix an egg into your oatmeal while you’re cooking them and you’ll be enjoying a nutritious breakfast in no time. “
So it may seem a little strange at first, but adding some natural orange juice to your oatmeal can help you take care of your heart in a delicious way.
“Instead of just using water to make oatmeal, try a 50/50 blend of water and 100% orange juice,” says Manaker. “The addition of orange juice will give oats a sweet, satisfying flavor with no added sugar. Plus, the unique addition will give your oatmeal dish a boost of heart-supporting nutrients, such as potassium and vitamin C. Orange juice consumption has also been linked to results such as lowering LDL cholesterol levels and anti-inflammatory effects, both of which can support heart health. “