Oat straw contains protein (avenins), saponins, flavonoids, alkaloids, steroidal compounds, vitamins B1, B2, D, E, carotene, starch, and fat.
It also contains minerals such as calcium, magnesium and iron and trace elements like silicon and potassium.
Oats have been an elemental food source for both humans and animals since prehistoric times. Oats uses as a food source is reflected in its genus name “Avena” which traces back to its original meaning of nourishing and the species name “sativa” meaning cultivated.
In addition to its recognition and value as a stable food crop, however, oat straw is also used in the treatment of a number of human maladies, ailments or discomforts.
It has been purported to help with the lowering of cholesterol naturally, increasing of vigor and stamina (it has been suggested to people recovering from long-term illnesses as an aid to help rebuild their strength).
The oat seeds carry antispasmodic, cardiac, diuretic, emollient, nervine and stimulant properties.
The straw (dried stems) and the grain have also been prescribed for the treatment of a wide range of nervous conditions.
The plant has also been shown to help with the exhaustion related to neurological pains or herbal treatment for insomnia, or multiple sclerosis.
It can help to combat problems such as obesity, varicose veins, irritations related to the digestive tract and as an herbal treatment for hemorrhoids, however it has been found that it should not be used in dyspepsia when accompanied by acidity of the stomach.
Research now shows that it contains the anti-tumor compound b-sitosterol and there are some suggestions that the chances of cancer in the bowel may be reduced by eating oats regularly, as well as cancers in general.
There is also some evidence to suggest that the consumption of the oats helps to naturally lower the blood sugar levels in the body and that it could be helpful as an herbal remedy for diabetics as well.
Oat straw does not contain gluten like other grains such as wheat, barley, and rye. It does contain a protein known as avenin that is well tolerated by most people with Celiac disease and those with gluten intolerance or sensitivity.