Oats, a Powerhouse for your Immunity & Gut Health

Are Oats good for your gut health and your immune system?

The simple oats, so many health benefits packed into this common pantry staple. Used in everything from baking to your morning porridge - this versatile ingredient can really provide us with heaps of good gut-health and immunity perks. There are ways to get long-lasting and even more life-changing benefits from these powerful grains.

Let's look at how oats improve gut health

Oats are high in resistant starch, a prebiotic fibre. This type of fibre passes straight through the digestive system until it reaches your gut. Here the gut bacteria ferment (“feed on”) the fibre helping to create a healthy environment.

Specifically, oats contain beta-glucan, a soluble fibre which has been directly linked to promoting happy gut bacteria. Beta-glucan in oats becomes gel-like when mixed with water. This gel acts as a lining in our gut, eventually helping to heal any damage (like leaky gut syndrome) and provide a protective barrier. A healthy barrier encourages healthy bacteria to multiply which then aids digestion and absorption of nutrients from your food.

This beta-glucan is very unique. It even helps neutrophils (a type of white blood cell) travel faster. These neutrophils are one of the first immune cells to respond to bacteria or viruses entering our body.

A happy gut microbiome also equals immune strength. It is said that 70%+ of our immune system is in our gut. There is a complex relationship between your gut and your immune system, but basically it comes down to preventing inflammation. Providing your system with more good microbes and gut-boosting foods can reduce chronic inflammation and regulate blood sugar levels.

If that wasn't enough, 90% of your body‚s supply of serotonin lies in your gut. Happy gut = happy mind! Lower stress levels contribute directly to a strong immune system as well.

3 ideas on how oats is good for gut health

  1. Simply soaking oats helps break down the starches and reduces phytic acid (an anti nutrient that can interfere with digestive enzymes and reduce mineral absorption). Place your oats in water or milk for an overnight soak can help your body reap the benefits of the nutrients in the oats even easier.
  2. Why not try pairing your daily porridge with turmeric? Turmeric is also an amazing anti-inflammatory antioxidant especially when combined with pepper. Great at improving so many things from heart health to depression. So perhaps call a porridge bowl with turmeric a little bowl of sunshine!
  3. Another idea to boost gut-health and immunity? Add yoghurt to your oats. An easy, fermented food that will provide your body with probiotics and continue to feed those good gut microbes.

Tolerating oats

If you are someone who thrives on oats, this simple ingredient can be good for your gut health overall. To really get your morning breakfast working harder for you, try adding in gut friendly ingredients.

We would like to thank Sara from Mindfulpeanut for this fantastic article. Follow her @the.mindfulpeanut

Check out this beautiful gut healing, immune boosting recipe: Golden Milk Overnight Oats.

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