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Today is National Oatmeal Muffin Day. It has no historical significance to the day and serves no other purpose than to have fun and eat a muffin. The good news is that oatmeal is a heart healthy grain and long proven to be nutritious. Not only can you have fun with your loved one today, you can encourage them to eat something filled with rich nutrients. The American Heart Association says that whole grains like oatmeal contain protein, fiber and other nutrients that are instrumental in preventing chronic diseases. When dietary fiber from whole grains is eaten as part of an overall healthy diet it can help to reduce blood cholesterol levels and may lower risk of heart disease. Oatmeal muffins, made with a heart healthy recipe like the one below, are a good way to eat and digest oatmeal. Engaging activities for today could include baking muffins with your loved one or going out to a coffee shop and buying them. Coffee shops are usually bright happy places that will raise the spirits of your loved one. When the days are short and the nights are long a short excursion to get some fresh air is always a good idea. If you and your loved one enjoy cooking, here is a heart healthy recipe for oatmeal muffins that makes 12. It is a simple recipe and if you like you can add any number of healthy ingredients like cranberries, blueberries, chopped apples and nuts. Ingredients:
  • 1 cup rolled oats (old fashioned oatmeal)
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1⁄2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1⁄2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
Directions:
  • Soak oats in milk for 1 hour.
  • Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.
  • Spoon into a muffin pan that has been lightly greased or sprayed with nonstick spray.
  • Bake at 400 F for 20-25 minutes.
If your loved one doesn’t like muffins there are other ways to offer them the great grain of oatmeal. Of course cereal is the most traditional way to eat oatmeal. You can make no-cook “Overnight Oatmeal” or oatmeal in a slow cooker so that your loved one will have a nutritious breakfast in the morning. Homemade cookies and apple crisp contain oatmeal and if they are made at home you can control ingredients like sugar and gluten to address dietary concerns. Home Care Assistance caregivers receive training in nutrition and know how to help your loved one shop for, and prepare, good food. Our caregivers enjoy spending time with seniors and engaging them in fun activities that also stimulate mental, physical and emotional health. We believe in elevating the standard of care for seniors everywhere, and eating well is the first step.
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