A little bit of information about oats will help to further answer the question.
Oats are cereal grains and like other grains, after harvest the inedible stalks and hulls are removed. What remains are the unrefined whole grains called oat groats or whole oats. They contain the bran, the germ and the endosperm. These kernels can be eaten whole, but they take a long time to prepare and cook. Many consumers describe the texture as chewy. For these reasons, whole oats are milled into a variety of forms, such as quick oats. But that’s not all.
What’s interesting and rather unique about oats is that unlike other grains—the processing of oats does not remove most of the oat’s bran and germ where much of the nutrients and fibre are concentrated. Because these wholesome parts of the oats are not eliminated, refined oats contain largely the same nutritional value as whole oats or kernels. So, how are quick oats processed?
The processing of quick oats is similar to that of rolled “old fashioned oats”. Whole oats or kernels are steamed, rolled out to flatten them into flakes and dried. Quick oats are typically steamed longer or rolled thinner than old fashioned oats. This increases the surface area to reduce cooking time which, of course, is why they’re called “quick oats”. Another added benefit resulting from refining is that the nutritious oils in oats are stabilized, which increases the shelf life compared to that of whole oats.
All in all, the important thing to keep in mind is that quick oats are whole oats. Even though quick oats are refined, their nutritional value remains essentially the same as the whole kernels. The difference is: Quick oats have a different texture which is creamier, they stay fresher longer and they cook much faster than whole oats.
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