Oats are a valuable source of several important nutrients.
They're a good source of protein, as the oat grain consists of approximately 13% protein. Notably, this protein is of a higher biological value than most other grains.
Oats are also rich in unsaturated fats (5.3g/100g) compared with other grains, as well as naturally low in saturated fats (with only 1.2g/100g).
Both soluble and insoluble fibres are important for human health.
In the UK, where people continue to struggle to meet dietary recommendations for saturated fats and fibre (2, 3), oats may be a particularly welcome addition for those trying to improve their diet.
In addition to protein, fibre, and unsaturated fats, oats contain a number of other nutrients including magnesium, vitamin E, thiamin, folate and B6, as well as phytochemicals, all of which may offer further benefits (1,4,5,6).
1. Singh R, et al. Avena sativa (Oat), A Potential Neutraceutical and Therapeutic Agent: An Overview. Crit Rev Food Sci. 2013;53(2): 126-144.
2. Mann KD, et al. Low whole grain intake in the UK: results from the National Diet and Nutrition Survey rolling programme 2008 -11. B J Nutr. 2015; 113:1643-1651.
3. PHE, FSA, MRC (2018). NDNS: results from Years 7 to 8 (combined) of the rolling programme for 2014/2015 and 2015/2016. https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/national-diet-and-nutrition-survey Accessed February 2019.
4. Flight and Clifton. Cereal grains and legumes in the prevention of coronary heart disease and stroke: a review of the literature. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2006;60: 1145-59.
5. Ryan D, et al. Bioactivity of oats as it relates to cardiovascular disease. Nutrition Research Reviews. 2007;20: 147-62.
6. Butt MS, et al. Oat: unique among the cereals. Eur J Nutr. 2008;47(2):68–79