I'm happy to share a guest post from Health Nut Wannabe, Sue. Sue did her homework on Oats and found some really healthful info - so here it is, thumbs up for Health Nut Wannabe .
I think it's a safe bet that when you think about herbal medicine, you don't immediately think about oatmeal, right? But the humble oat, (Avena sativa), disguised as a boring breakfast food, is actually a powerful medicinal plant which has been used throughout history in many parts of the world including the Mediterranean, China, and more recently, North America.
Ever since people gave up their nomadic ways and became agrarian (staying in one place, growing and harvesting), they have cultivated grain to produce food. But oats were also used by traditional healers for chronic illness to restore strength and vigor. Additionally, the fabulous fiber found in the bran helps soothe and motivate the colon to do its thing, and it also removes bad cholesterol ( remember "Lousy" LDL ) from the body which helps prevent heart disease.
The grass from the oat plant is also beneficial, similar to wheat and barley grass. It is full of minerals, a whole bunch of them, which help the body build and repair bone, hair, teeth, nails, and other structural tissue. One way to use the grass is dried (straw) and made into a strong tea. Hmmm, oatstraw tea... might take some getting used to...
So what are some of the other traditional uses for oats besides mush? According to this article from Tree of Light's Master Herbalist, Steven Horne AHG, and Paula Perretty, oats are great for some of our everyday lifestyle issues:
~stress - acts as a nerve tonic
~emotions - a mild anti-depressant and sedative
~hemorrhoids and varicose veins - a blood tonic to aid circulation
~aphrodisiac - increases energy, libido, sensitivity to touch
As far as easy health foods, it can't get much easier than making a steamy bowl of oatmeal. If you can boil water and then stir something around for a few minutes, you can do it. The only catch is, it has to be whole, slow-cooking oats - rolled or steal-cut - not the quick or instant kind which are overprocessed and much higher in blood-glucose raising carbs. Add a blob of organic butter or virgin coconut oil for a tummy-filling meal. Of course, if you are on a fat-burning cycle you will have to skip the oats for now, but go ahead and eat the butter!
Health Nut Wannabe is having fun searching for easy ways to eat right without needing a degree in gourmet cooking.