Are Wheat Oatmeal Cookies Healthy?
The problem with most oatmeal cookies is the refined flour added to the dish. However, whole-wheat oatmeal cookies rectify this issue by adding the healthful benefits of whole-wheat grain flour. These cookies are a perfect blend of two whole grains that teem with health benefits. However, are they good enough to be treated as health food or should one still practice caution? If this question has been bothering you then here is a complete analysis of the nutritional composition and health pros and cons of these cookies to help you make an informed decision.
Nutritional composition of whole wheat oatmeal cookies
With the increase in health consciousness among the population, whole wheat cookies have become quite popular with many commercial brands and cookbooks coming up with their unique version of the basic recipe. Here is the average nutritional composition of 1 serving of these whole grain cookies:
Total calories – 85kcal
Total fat – 3.5 gm
Saturated Fat – 1 gm
Cholesterol – 7 mg
Total carbohydrates – 13 gm
Sugar – 4 gm
Dietary fiber – 2 gm
Protein – 2 gm
Sodium – 65 mg
The calcium and iron content of the cookies can vary from 1% to 1.5% depending upon the extent of fortification.
Health benefits of Whole-wheat oatmeal cookies:
Rich source of dietary fiber - The abundance of soluble fibers in the cookies provides very high satiety value. This helps curb sweet cravings and junk food addiction.
Antioxidants and anti-aging properties - Both oatmeal and whole wheat are a rich source of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber. These nutrients help prevent a medley of diseases including CVD, diabetes, and cancer.
Promotes cardio vascular health – Oats and whole wheat cookies are a good source of PUFA, MUFA, and omega fatty acids. These lipid compounds promote healthy lipid profile, prevent inflammation of blood vessel, reduce cholesterol build up, and plaque formation in the blood vessels. These actions together help in the up keep of Cardio vascular health.
Prevents muscular diseases – Certain compounds present in wheat grains help prevent muscular dystrophy and diseases related to neuro-muscular degeneration.
Helps reduces PMS – The falvanoids and phytonutrients present in oats and wheat are purported to alleviate pain and mood swings related to PMS. Certain studies have also linked them to relieving menopausal symptoms.
Disadvantages of eating whole wheat oatmeal cookies:
The major concern with whole wheat and oatmeal cookies is the presence of gluten. This protein is considered as one of the most common and potent food allergens. People suffering from gluten allergies need to beware of these products to prevent fatal anaphylactic shocks. Moreover, restricting gluten seems to help manage conditions like Celiac disease and Autism better
Whole wheat and oatmeal contribute to very high doses of fibers, which can at times act negatively with the system and cause diarrheal symptoms. It is not recommended to people with weak stomach and/or convalescents.
Even though, whole grains are healthful ingredients, cookies are not made of just these. There are other not so fit adjuncts including butter or shortening, sodium rich additives, and sugar. These add unnecessary calories to the baked dish. Although, the key ingredients help reduce cholesterol, fat used to prepare the cookies add direct cholesterol to the diet. Sugar causes a sudden peak in blood sugar levels, which negates the presence of dietary fibers in oats and whole wheat.
A major concern with whole-wheat oat cookies is the taste factor. The use of whole grains gives the cookies a barn like taste, which not many appreciate. To avoid this some brands add flour softeners and other such additives, which in turn increase the sodium content of the goodies.
In view of the pros and cons of eating whole-wheat oatmeal cookies, one can easily say that these treats are surely better than other options available in the cookie category. However, that’s that – one cannot label them as health foods and indulge in them regularly. Eat it, as an occasional snack may be more regularly than your regular cookies and you would be fine, but eat it daily and your diet goals may be compromised.