January is National Oatmeal Month!
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January is National Oatmeal Month!

Posted on Friday, January 18th, 2013 at 8:00 am
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Bowl of dried oatsA breakfast favorite nationwide, oatmeal is not only a versatile grain that can be enjoyed in many different recipes, but it’s also really good for you! In celebration of January being National Oatmeal Month, here is a little guide explaining the health benefits of oatmeal as well as a few ideas on how it can be used to make a face mask, to treat poison oak and more!

Oatmeal contains a special strand of fiber that has been shown to help lower bad cholesterol levels. It also is high in antioxidants that are good for your heart, is rich in fiber, which can help lower blood sugar levels, can lower your risk of diabetes, and can even lower your risk of breast cancer. You can enjoy oatmeal in the morning topped with your favorite fruit, or you can add it to your favorite recipes throughout the day. For example, when added to meat, oats can help your meatloaf or hamburger patties hold their shape.

In addition to being really good for your body on the inside, oatmeal has calming and soothing properties that can soothe everything from dry skin to a rash from poison oak. There are many recipes for an oatmeal scrub or facial mask on the internet. You can use it to exfoliate or get rid of itchy, dry skin. If you’re looking to treat poison oak or any other bothersome rash, simply soak oatmeal in water until it becomes a paste-like consistency. If you’d like to make a smoother paste that’s easier to rub on your skin, simply put the soaked oats in your blender and puree them before applying.

Oatmeal is also good for your dog’s skin. When your pooch’s skin becomes inflamed or itchy, he or she may only make the problem worse with excessive scratching. In some cases, they’ll even pull out their fur to try and treat the condition. Avoid this and potentially expensive vet visits by simply washing your dog with an oatmeal shampoo. The oatmeal will naturally soothe any irritation caused by dry skin or bug bites. Special shampoo formulas for dogs are available at your local pet store. You can even take it a step further and buy a soothing oatmeal conditioner to use after you’ve washed your pup. This will be extra soothing, and their fur might just end up being softer when you pet them!

If your kids are stuck inside on a rainy day, you can create oatmeal clay to ease their boredom for a while. Simply mix 1 cup of oatmeal to ½ cup of flour and a ½ cup of water. This will create a bumpy clay your children can form into their favorite shapes. If you want smoother clay, simply put the mixture into your blender before giving to your little ones. Eventually, the oatmeal clay will harden and your little ones can decorate their oatmeal sculptures any way they like!

How will you celebrate National Oatmeal Month?

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