It is not a surprise to hear that Meghan Markle chooses a very healthy diet, but in many interviews she has described herself as a ‘foodie at heart’, and has spoken about the cornerstone to her eating pattern being the golden rule: never miss breakfast.
Meghan reportedly favours ‘steel cut oats’ at breakfast time. So, what are they and how can we get our hands on them?
All oats start off as oat grouts – the whole unbroken grains before being processed. The oats are usually roasted at a very low temperature, as this not only gives them their flavour but also increases their shelf life.
Steel cut oats, probably better known in Ireland as ‘Pinhead Oats’, are made by chopping the whole oat grout two to three times rather than rolling them. This makes for a ‘chewier’ cereal, which is nearly always used at breakfast as they take slightly longer to cook.
Rolled oats look like flat, round discs. To make these, the oat grouts are first steamed to make them soft and pliable, then they are flattened in rollers, hence the name ‘rolled oats’. These are quicker to cook, and usually absorb more liquid. Instant oats are just pre-cooked for a little longer, dried and then rolled and pressed slightly to make them thinner than rolled oats. This just means that they cook more quickly.
Meghan makes a good choice, as people who get their oats first thing feel fuller for longer. This has been shown to prevent over-eating throughout the day, which helps keep a healthier weight and blood glucose levels.
This is because oats have a low GI, which means that the energy from porridge will be slowly released into the body, keeping you going for longer. Better still, recent research has also shown that people who eat porridge everyday have a lower cholesterol level, especially if your cholesterol is too high.
Since 1997, the Food and Drug Administration USA agreed that foods high in oatmeal could make claims on their labels about their cardiovascular heart benefit if accompanied with a low fat diet.
So, choosing a breakfast that will soon be fit for a princess is not such a bad choice!
For more information or for more information on diet and nutrition, contact: The Community Nutrition and Dietetic Service, HSE Dublin-Mid Leinster on (044 ) 9395518 or email [email protected].