Oatmeal is high in fiber, magnesium and antioxidants. Fiber reduces LDL cholesterol, regulates blood sugar, supports immune function, and promotes weight loss and healthy elimination. Magnesium improves insulin response and helps prevent type 2 diabetes. Oatmeal's antioxidant, avenanthramide, fights free radicals that attack HDL, the good cholesterol.
In addition, the antioxidants found in oatmeal help prevent hardening of the arteries by suppressing the production of molecules that allow monocytes to adhere to artery walls. Oatmeal is naturally gluten-free, and it improves the diets of those with gluten intolerance. Oatmeal helps reduce blood pressure. It may also help lower the incidence of childhood asthma, according to the Whole Grains Council.