Healing Foods

Oats

Graze on this familiar, versatile grain for powerful heart protection, brain acuity, and a happy disposition
oats

Oatmeal is known as comfort food for a reason—actually for lots of reasons. And they all suggest that eating oats in some form every day is a smart idea. Besides being a great source of energy-giving protein, B vitamins, vitamin E, calcium, and iron, this wholesome grain is celebrated for its capacity to lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels, a quality attributable to its soluble fiber. Oats’ soluble fiber also promotes digestive health. In addition, a 2005 Tufts University study found that oatmeal improves brain function, including memory and cognitive ability, while stimulating the production of serotonin in the brain to boost your mood.

Choose It & Use It
Enhance the subtly sweet, nutty flavor of oats by roasting them. They give texture to muffins, breads, and hearty salads, add substance to veggie loaves and burgers, and lend creaminess to soups and sauces. Oats are compatible with sweet spices, such as cinnamon, and piquant herbs, such as thyme. Experiment with oat bran and oat flour, which can be made from rolled oats in a blender.

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Buttermilk Oatmeal Pancakes

Buttermilk Oatmeal Pancakes

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All by itself, oatmeal can make a difference in how well your brain works. In a 2005 study conducted at Tufts University, children who had oatmeal for breakfast performed better on memory and cognitive tests than those who ate a sugary cereal—even though both the oatmeal and the cereal had

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Plum Crumble

Plum Crumble

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This dessert can be prepared with whatever fruits are in season. We used plums, but you could also choose apples, pears, or frozen berries. Recipe by Carolyn Trompeter.

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Overnight Chai Steel-Cut Oats

Ayurvedic lifestyle counselor Aisha Bahrami created this delicious no-cook oatmeal by accident: “I put all my ingredients into a pot for breakfast, got a phone call, and totally forgot about it,” she says.

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Iced Oatmeal Cookies

Iced Oatmeal Cookies

To keep the icing for these chewy morsels from cracking, spread it on while the cookies are still hot. Applesauce helps trim the amount of margarine needed, and flaxseed meal stands in for eggs.

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