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Oats (Avena sativa)

Oats (Avena sativa)

*This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

About

Oat is a plant. People use the seed (oat), leaves and stem (oat straw), and bran (the outer layer of whole oats) to make medicine.

Oat bran and whole oats are used for high blood pressure; high cholesterol; diabetes; and digestion problems including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), diverticulosis, inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), diarrhea, and constipation. They are also used for preventing heart disease, gallstones, colon cancer, and stomach cancer.

People use oats for joint pain (rheumatism), fatigue, a fatigue-related condition called neurasthenia syndrome, withdrawal from nicotine and narcotics, and lowering high uric acid levels that can cause gout. Oats are also used for anxiety, excitation and stress; as well as for weak bladder and kidney ailments. Other uses include connective tissue disorders, skin diseases, fat redistribution syndrome associated with HIV treatment, and as a tonic.

Oat straw is used for the flu, swine (H1N1) flu, coughs, bladder disorders, joint pain, eye ailments, frostbite, gout, and a skin infection called impetigo.

Topically, oats are used for skin conditions including itchiness, dryness, oiliness, weeping eczema, and contact dermatitis. Oats are also applied to the skin for chicken pox, osteoarthritis, liver disorders, and added to foot baths for chronically cold or tired feet.

In foods, oats are used as a grain or cereal.

In manufacturing, oats are included in some bath products and soaps.

How does it work?

Oats might help reduce cholesterol and blood sugar levels and control appetite by causing a feeling of fullness. Oat bran might work by blocking the absorption from the gut of substances that contribute to heart disease, high cholesterol, and diabetes.

Traditionally used for

Reducing the risk of heart disease, when oat bran is used as part of a diet low in fat and cholesterol.
Lowering cholesterol.
Reducing blood sugar levels in people with diabetes when oat bran is used in the diet.
Preventing stomach cancer when oats and oat bran are used in the diet.
Preventing cancer in the large intestine (colon cancer) when oat bran is used in the diet.
Lowering high blood pressure.
Preventing fat redistribution syndrome in people with HIV disease. .
Blocking fat from being absorbed from the gut.
Preventing gallstones.
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Diverticulosis.
Inflammatory bowel disease.
Constipation.
Anxiety.
Stress.
Nerve disorders.
Bladder weakness.
Joint and tendon disorders.
Gout.
Kidney conditions.
Opium and nicotine withdrawal.
Skin diseases.

Dosage

By Mouth:

For high cholesterol: 56-150 grams of whole oat products such as oat bran or oatmeal, containing 3.6-10 grams of beta-glucan (soluble fiber) daily as part of a low-fat diet. One-half cup (40 grams) of Quaker oatmeal contains 2 grams of beta-glucan; one cup (30 grams) of Cheerios contains one gram of beta-glucan.

For lowering blood glucose levels in patients with type 2 diabetes: high fiber foods such as whole oat products containing 25 grams of soluble fiber are used daily. 38 grams of oat bran or 75 grams of dry oatmeal contains about 3 grams of beta-glucan.

Possible Side Effects

Oat bran is SAFE for most people, including pregnant and breast-feeding women. It can cause intestinal gas and bloating. To minimize side effects, start with a low dose and increase slowly to the desired amount. Your body will get used to oat bran and the side effects will likely go away.

Putting oat-containing products on the skin can cause some people to break out.

Special Precautions & Warnings

Difficulty swallowing food or chewing problems: If you have swallowing problems (from a stroke, for example) or if you have trouble chewing because of missing teeth or poorly fitting dentures, it’s best to avoid eating oats. Poorly chewed oats can cause blockage of the intestine.

Disorders of the digestive tract including the esophagus, stomach, and intestines: Avoid eating oat products. Digestive problems that could extend the length of time it takes for your food to be digested could allow oats to block your intestine.

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