Though convenient, flavored instant oatmeal doesn’t do your morning or health any justice. Instant oats are steamed, flattened, pre-cooked, cut into tiny pieces, and dehydrated, whereas whole, rolled oats are just steamed and flattened, and nutritionally speaking they’re similar in calories, protein, carbs, and sugar—it’s the flavored packets that really get you. They’re hiding a lot of salt and sugar, so opt for plain instant oatmeal and flavor it with cinnamon and fruits like cherries, strawberries, or blueberries, or prepare steel-cut oats the night before with chia seeds, almond milk, fruit, and store in the fridge overnight.
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