The oat, sometimes called the common oat, is a species of cereal grain grown for its seed, which is known by the same name. While oats are suitable for human consumption as oatmeal and rolled oats, one of the most common uses is as livestock feed. Oats are a nutrient-rich food associated with lower blood cholesterol when consumed regularly.
Avenins present in oats (proteins similar to gliadin from wheat) can trigger celiac disease in a small proportion of people. Also, oat products are frequently contaminated by other gluten-containing grains, mainly wheat and barley.
Oats are generally considered healthy due to their rich content of several essential nutrients (table). In a 100 gram serving, oats provide 389 calories and are an excellent source (20% or more of the Daily Value, DV) of protein (34% DV), dietary fiber (44% DV), several B vitamins and numerous dietary minerals, especially manganese (233% DV) (table). Oats are 66% carbohydrates, including 11% dietary fiber and 4% beta-glucans, 7% fat and 17% protein (table).
The established property of their cholesterol-lowering effects has led to acceptance of oats as a health food.