ORGANIC OATMEAL!

"The type of oatmeal you buy makes all the difference. Forget about the instant packs; they aren't even in the ball game. The less processing, the higher the fiber, the lower the sugar impact, and the better the oatmeal is for you."
Jonny Bowden, Ph.D.

Each month, a different Freshlife bulk food (or 2) will appear on the Fresh $avings end cap. Featured foods will always be discounted and free handouts and recipes provided. This month, save on organic oatmeal and organic raisins. Stop in, stock up, and pick up 3 free recipes for enjoying this dynamic duo. There are lots of great reasons to enjoy organic oatmeal. Read on…

A steaming bowl of freshly cooked oatmeal is a great way to gain the strength and energy needed to carry you through a hectic morning. This is especially true if you are trying to prevent (or currently have) heart disease or diabetes. Oats contain a fiber known as beta-glucan, proven in many studies to lower cholesterol. Eating just 3 grams of oat fiber per day (an amount found in one bowl of oatmeal) typically lowers total cholesterol by 8-23%.

Antioxidant compounds unique to oats, called avenanthramides, help prevent free radicals from damaging LDL cholesterol, thus reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. When vitamin C is added, the value of the oatmeal is even greater – so take your vitamin C at breakfast!

In a study conducted at Tufts University, oatmeal had a positive impact on arthritis by means of the grain’s action against the secretion of pro-inflammatory cytokines.

Oatmeal also enhances your body’s immune response to infection. Beta-glucan found in oatmeal helps neutrophils (the most abundant type of non-specific immune cell) navigate to the site of an infection and eliminate bacteria more quickly. Priming neutrophils with beta-glucan helps these immune defenders quickly locate the bacterial mother lode within infected tissue and this more rapid response to infection results in faster microbial clearance and healing. Since our non-specific immune defenses are the body's first strike forces against invading pathogens, starting your day with a bowl of oatmeal can boost your immune response in addition to your morning energy levels.

Studies show that beta-glucan has beneficial effects in diabetes as well. Type 2 diabetes patients given oatmeal experienced much lower rises in blood sugar compared to those who were given white rice or bread. Starting out your day with a blood sugar stabilizing food such as oats may make it easier to keep blood sugar levels under control the rest of the day, especially when the rest of your day is also supported with nourishing fiber-rich foods.

Oatmeal is a rich source of magnesium, a mineral that acts as a co-factor for more than 300 enzymes, including enzymes involved in the body's use of glucose and insulin secretion.

Oatmeal is a very good source of selenium. A necessary cofactor of the important antioxidant, glutathione peroxidase, selenium works with vitamin E in numerous vital antioxidant systems throughout the body. These powerful actions make selenium helpful in decreasing asthma symptoms and in the prevention of heart disease. In addition, selenium is involved in DNA repair and is associated with a reduced risk for cancer, especially colon cancer.

Oatmeal can indeed help to prevent certain cancers. Pre-menopausal women eating the most whole grain fiber (at least 13 g/day) had a 41% reduced risk of breast cancer, compared to those with the lowest whole grain fiber intake (4 g or less per day).

So stock up this month while organic oatmeal is on sale – and enjoy a grain that provides many opportunities for you to embrace your best health!

Barb Jarmoska, Freshlife founder

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