Eating healthy is difficult, and almost all of us (if we are conscious about our health) struggle with it. There are a lot of different factors to consider, and there are too many products in the market to choose from. People on the media recommend different foods that can help you lose weight (or gain weight) in a matter of days.
But most of us know that none of this works. However, some foods have made themselves usable and have helped us maintain a good nutrient status, for instance, cereal grains. But we can’t eat cereal grains because of the thick coverings they have to protect them from pets, microbial attacks, and environmental factors. So the grains have to be processed to convert them into edible and easy to prepare items.
Two such products make Oatmeal and Muesli, both are made from oats and are quite popular globally. According to a survey, the total export value of Oatmeal in France in 2020 was 17 million Euro; this number was just 11.2 million in 2010. So in this article, we will talk about this popular breakfast option and Muesli, another frequently eaten product.
Oats are not consumed as they are usually; they involve some form of processing to make them edible. Oatmeal is made by processing, dehulling, and dehusking the oats. You can make Oatmeal from steel-cut, whole, or rolled oats. You can also ground the oats into a powder form, in which case it is called white oats.
The Oatmeal usually forms a porridge after cooking, which usually involves boiling in water or milk. Other ingredients include nuts, sugar, and fruits like blueberries, strawberries, bananas, and kiwi. The key factor that separates Oatmeal from other types of oats is that they take much less time to make, and this is why sometimes they are called quick oats. The oat is simmered in cookware of choice, usually a saucier pan or pot, with milk or water until thick and warm.
Other ways of making Oatmeal involve soaking the Oatmeal in water (or milk) in a utensil overnight; this method involves no heat and is an excellent way to preserve the nutrients present in Oatmeal that can be easily denatured while cooking. The soaked oats can be eaten the next morning without cooking with a splash of honey, maple syrup and topped with fruits or nuts.
Oatmeal is a great option for those trying to lose weight as it provides our body with dietary fiber and low GI carbohydrates that ensure we stay full for a longer period and our body’s insulin level doesn’t spike too quickly. But if you are consuming Oatmeal for this purpose, look out for instant Oatmeal, which comes loaded with sugar; this sugar is a source of sneaky unnecessary calories that we can avoid. If you have a problem with Oatmeal’s taste, it is wiser to add honey or fruits on top of your cooked Oatmeal to make it more palatable.
Muesli is an alternative for people who think that Oatmeal is too boring. Muesli is made from several ingredients, including coconut powder (or coconut chunks), nuts (roasted or raw), seeds, and dried fruits. This blend of ingredients makes Muesli a healthy option for improving their nutritional status while keeping their diet interesting. But you have to beware because some manufacturers add a lot of sugar in their product to make it more palatable and to increase their sales, forgetting that most of the people buying their product are trying to eat healthier. Rolled oats and steel-cut oats are essential ingredients used to make Muesli.
You can also make Muesli at home if you have the ingredients; this option is much better than buying ready-made Muesli because you can never be sure about the quality of ingredients used by companies. However, if you are usually busy, buying Muesli from the grocery store is more effective. Muesli is usually tossed in a bowl of milk and topped with fruits, honey, or maple syrup, but the options are limitless and comes down to your preferences and creativity.
If you buy ready-made Muesli, then ensure that you buy the one with low sugar and high fiber. Fiber is an essential nutrient with several health benefits, some of which are mentioned in the previous section. Don’t expect that you’ll find Muesli with zero sugar, as some ingredients like honey and fruits have sugar in them, which is fine, but you should avoid any sugar from syrups.
So What’s the Difference Between Muesli and Oatmeal?
Muesli and Oatmeal are two different products with several differences that set them apart. For instance, Muesli is made with rolled oats, which are prepared by flattening oat groats with rollers; This increases the surface area of the oats, enabling them to absorb more fluid. The rolled oats give Muesli more texture and make Muesli flakier.
On the other hand, you can make Oatmeal with rolled oats or steel-cut oats. Steel-cut oats give Oatmeal a finer texture, making it creamier and smoother. Another difference between these two products is the ingredients used to make them. Oatmeal is usually made with nothing more than oats. However, some manufacturers like to add sugar and other ingredients like fruits and nuts to improve flavor. Muesli is different as it is made using rolled oats only and uses various other ingredients such as dry fruits.
The difference in ingredients also means that the nutrients in the food items are different. Oatmeal usually has no additional ingredients, so the nutrients in it are limited to whatever is present in the oats. On the other hand, Muesli can derive its nutrients from other ingredients. A good example of this would be essential fatty acids, which come from the nuts added in Muesli. Another difference between these two types of food items is that Muesli can be eaten without cooking, while Oatmeal is usually cooked or soaked overnight before being consumed.
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