Benefits of Oat Flour: A Power-Packed Alternative

Benefits of Oat Flour: A Power-Packed Alternative

When we become health conscious, we try to alter our regularly consumed meals and make them more nutritious. We often look for replacements for our meats, fats, sugar, and most importantly, our carbohydrates or flour. The majority of the global population consumes some form of wheat and wheat flour as their main source of carbohydrates for every meal. And while wheat flour is healthy, is it doing the best for your health? So why not use a substitute?

One of the best substitutes for wheat flour in terms of taste, nutritional value, and texture is oat flour. The reason for our affinity to use oats as a substitute is because of the various benefits of oat flour, from being high in protein and fiber to having healthy fats and micronutrients. Oats flour is derived from grinding any variety of oats (rolled or steel-cut) into a fine powder, which is then used for substituting wheat-based flour in preparations like cookies, cakes, pancakes, porridges, and even rotis! Not only is this healthy flour completely gluten-free, but it is a rich storehouse of essential nutrients that our body needs for day-to-day functioning. In this article, we shall be discussing some of the various health benefits of oats flour, and why you should consider making the shift to consuming oats flour regularly.

Health Benefits of Oat Flour

Some of the several beneficial qualities of oats flour are listed below. Let’s dive deep into this list of benefits and understand why oats flour is the best!

1. A Nutritional Powerhouse

Oats flour is a veritable nutritional powerhouse! It is packed with essential nutrients that make it a composite flour for consumption, without any additives. Oats flour is high in carbohydrates, and plant protein with a good balance of all essential amino acids and soluble dietary fiber known as beta-glucan. Additionally, it is a storehouse of several essential micronutrients like vitamins, minerals like magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, copper, iron, etc., along with being rich in antioxidants. This makes it the ideal healthy flour to replace or substitute wheat flour in our day-to-day diet.

2. Antioxidant Defense

Whole oats, and by definition, oats flour, are incredibly rich in anti-oxidants like avenanthramides and plant compounds like polyphenols. These unique antioxidants help reduce blood pressure by dilating blood vessels due to the production of nitric oxide gas, which helps better blood flow and keeps blood pressure levels low. Furthermore, avenanthramides also possess anti-inflammatory and anti-itching properties.

3. The Power of Soluble Fiber

Oats flour is very rich in beta-glucan, which is a soluble dietary fiber. Beta-glucan is known to help reduce insulin response and blood glucose levels and help in regulating type-2 diabetes. Additionally, beta-glucan partially dissolves with water in your stomach and forms a gel-like solution, which increases the growth of good bacteria in your gut and digestive tract.

4. Weight Management

One of the greatest benefits of oats flour is its ability to aid weight management. If you are trying to watch how much you eat and monitor your calorie intake, eating foods like oat flour which are high in soluble fiber is good for you. The beta-glucan and high protein content make oats flour and oats very filling, and this helps you feel full for a longer time as these nutrients take a long time to digest. This increases the time intervals after which you start to feel hungry. Additionally, the beta-glucan promotes the release of satiety hormones like PYY (peptide YY) which leads to a reduced calorie intake and less affinity for obesity. Furthermore, the high protein content prevents metabolic slowdown, changes the level of weight-regulating hormones, and prevents muscle loss.

5. Beyond the Plate: Skin Care Benefits

Oats benefit the skin by reducing inflammation and irritation. Oat flour can also soften and moisturize the skin, reducing the appearance of wrinkles, whether it is consumed or applied topically in the form of a paste.

6. Potential Benefits for Children

Asthma is a very common condition found in children. Most children often grow out of it, but still face symptoms like shortness of breath, etc., well into their teenage and pre-pubescent years. Research indicates that early introduction of oats, for example, may protect children from developing asthma. The anti-inflammatory nature of oats flour may make it an ideal ingredient to include in your child’s diet.

If you are looking to incorporate oats flour into your diet, then do check out our article on how to make oats flour at home. And if you wish to try out some fun recipes using oats flour, you can always refer to our article on how to make oats roti, to learn about how to make a delicious and versatile oats flatbread, that pairs well with several dishes!

With Rotimatic, enjoy a variety of healthy flatbreads using oat flour and other alternatives, effortlessly.

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1. Is it healthy to eat oats every day?

In one study from 2020, the health of participants with inactive (quiescent) UC who ate oat bran daily for 24 weeks was maintained, and they did not experience their symptoms getting worse. This suggests oats can be consumed every day. However, since oats are high in fiber, you may notice changes in your stool’s appearance. Consuming an excess amount of oats may also lead to decreased nutrient absorption.

2. Is oat flour healthier than almond flour?

Compared to almond flour, oat flour is higher in carbohydrates but lower in both calories and fat. Oats are a good source of soluble fiber. A 2017 study indicated that beta-glucan in oats helps lower cholesterol and the risk of diabetes. Hence, is oat flour healthy? Yes, it is, as it is more versatile and nutritionally dense than almond flour.

3. What’s the difference between wheat and oats?

The nutrient composition of oats and wheat is different, but both contain carbohydrates, protein, vitamins, and minerals. You can find minerals like magnesium, zinc, and iron in almost equal amounts in both oats and wheat. Oats are also naturally gluten-free, while wheat is not.

4. Is oat flour gluten-free?

Yes, oats are completely gluten-free. However, because the oats may be processed in factories that also process wheat, there are chances the oats and subsequent oat flour may be slightly contaminated. Hence, if you are looking for completely gluten-free oats, you should only buy oats with a gluten-free guarantee.

5. What does oat flour taste like?

Oat flour has a lightly nutty, toasty, and slightly sweet flavor. It adds a caramelized flavor when baked or roasted in cookies, cakes, bread, etc. Pairs well with nuts, berries, fruits, yogurt, spices like cinnamon and nutmeg, and sugars like maple sugar and brown sugar.