Oats are the way to a dietitian’s heart, quite literally! You might have heard that oats are heart healthy, but do you know why? Oats have soluble fiber, which lowers our total blood cholesterol as it moves through our digestive track. They are also high in B-vitamins, which convert our food into energy through the day. This is one of the reasons that oats make a great breakfast in morning. Stay tuned for some of our favorite overnight oats recipes, that will be posted next week!

Dietitians are often asked if any particular type of oat is more healthy – short answer is, NO. The difference lies in how they are processed, not their nutritional content. Here is an oat vocabulary according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics:

Oat groats: These are oat kernels with the outer hard husks removed and then toasted. Groats are the least-processed form of oats and take the longest to prepare.

Rolled oats: These are oat groats that are steamed, pressed with a roller, and then dried. They also go by the name old-fashioned oats.

Steel-cut or Scotch oats: These are unrolled oats that have been cut into two or three pieces. Like groats, they have a chewy texture.

Quick-cooking oats: These are rolled oats that have been cut into smaller pieces than the steel-cut variety and rolled thinner. This processing means they cook quickly.

Instant oatmeal: These are oats that are precooked and dried. This form can be directly mixed with hot water to make a smooth, creamy-textured cereal.

We wanted to kick off our RD Kitchen this week with one of our favorite snacks – Protein Bites. They use powdered peanut butter and dark chocolate chips, which give them a flavor that seems too good to be true!

Click to learn more and for our Protein Bites recipe!