If you ask 10 nutritionist and fitness experts what is the best food to consume for breakfast, at least half of them will tell you oats.
Rich in fiber, protein, and healthy carbs, oats are an affordable meal you can get for almost everything. Usually, however, oats are a staple for breakfast. They offer limitless opportunities for customization.
When you are trying to lose weight, a diet that puts emphasis on oats is perfect. Because their low caloric value and high healthy nutrients value, oats can help you lose weight when you consume them on a regular basis.
However, there are few things you need to know. For starters, what are some oats that you should avoid? Not all oats are created equal. And not all as healthy. That being said, we will guide you through your oatmeal diet.
Avoid instant oats
These are just packed with sugar. It doesn’t matter which instant oats you choose. The texture does not make any difference. No matter if you want creamy oats or some other texture instant oats, never buy instant oats. Instead, go for plain oats that do not contain any flavor.
Packaged oatmeal comes with sugar, much more calories, and other unhealthy nutrients. One packet of maple and brown sugar flavored oatmeal contains approximately 13g of sugar and 158 calories. On the other hand, 1/3 cup of plain rolled oats comes with less than 1g of sugar, and just 102 calories.
Do not worry, you can flavor your oatmeal later. But you will do that with healthy topping. Just make sure to switch from flavored to plain oatmeal. A simple switch will help you lose about 5 pounds over the course of one year, without making any other change.
Avoid fatty and sugary add-ins
Maple syrup, honey, agave nectar, and other sweeteners can be tempting. Let’s be honest. Most of us want their oatmeal a bit more sugary. However, you should avoid even these healthy sugars. Instead, go for banana puree, a drop of stevia, or some other sugary, but calorie-free sweetener.
You also want to avoid fatty toppings. That includes peanut butter. While it is great for adding sugary flavor, peanut butter adds 188 calories to the meal with just 2 tablespoons. Multiple that with all meals you eat in a month, and see how much pounds you are gaining.
As for water or milk dilemma, always prepare your meal with water. While there are low-fat and skim milk options, they still come with calories. One cup of whole milk, for example, contains 8g of fat and 149 calories. After all the goal is to lose weight, not gain, right?
Consume oats with fiber toppings
When it comes to toppings for your oatmeal, fiber is the way to go. Oats are loaded with fiber in the first place, but you want to boost your fiber intake in the morning further. Fiber is a key ingredient for weight loss, as it will improve your digestion and bowel movement.
Some great fiber content toppings include berries, any of them. Be it raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, or something else, they all bring loads of fiber to the table. Banana is also a good option, but make sure to add another fruit to the mix as well.
How to serve oatmeal?
The biggest benefit of eating oatmeal is you will lose weight. And the second biggest advantage is versatility and adaptability. You can mix oatmeal with any other topping, cooking technique, or texture, and you will still end up with a healthy meal.
For example, you can make a banana bread oatmeal. For this recipe, you will need to bake a mixture of oats, unsweetened almond milk, cinnamon, and banana puree. Make a big batch, then, separate it into smaller servings.
Another way to serve oatmeal is plain and simple with a cup of yogurt. Just let your oats soak into yogurt for five minutes, and then eat it.
Last, but not least, you can improve your protein intake by whisking an egg white into the oats. Whisk the egg white, add it to the oats, and stir while cooking. The flavor will not change, but you will get more protein. And we all know upping your protein intake is the key to losing weight.