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First of all, oats are considered a grain. Oat bran and rolled oats differ from their anatomy and mode of processing, thus the nutritional values are varied. Whole grain or kernel contains three parts: the bran, germ, and endosperm. The bran, or the most outer-layered skin, is completely edible and rich in fiber, B vitamins, and antioxidants. The germ, also known as the embryo, is also rich in B vitamins along with protein, minerals, and healthy fats. The endosperm supplies the germ with nutrients and is the largest portion of the kernel, containing starchy carbs, protein, and vitamins and minerals.

So when it truly comes down to the most healthful grain product, whole grains are also known as groats, often take precedence. When grains are processed and transformed into a refined grain, the bran and germ are removed, thus removing some of the healthful components that come along with them. But despite the removal of the kernel’s components, cereal products still have the ability to withhold a nutritional value, including oat bran.

What is Oat Bran?
Oat bran is produced from the outer bran including its multiple layers – exocarp, mesocarp, and endocarp. And as mentioned above, whole grains contain all three layers, proposing oat bran is actually not considered a whole grain. Though the germ and endosperm are absent, the bran still provides fiber, B vitamins, and antioxidants.

Oat Bran vs Rolled Oat
Rolled oats are also known as “oatmeal.” Unlike oat bran, rolled oats are considered a whole grain. After being hulled and harvested, oats are mashed or “rolled” down to the well-known flattened flake. But despite the physical differences, both are healthful breakfast options and additions. For instance, oat bran contains lesser amounts of protein related to its stripping of the germ and endosperm. Also, the endosperm has the larger carb content in rolled oats which supplying the starchy carbs that are found absent in oat bran. In addition to varying face values, rolled oats are richer in vitamins and minerals including potassium, folate, and selenium.

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