Cereal foods provide carbohydrates and dietary fibre, but also protein. To support the goals of sustainable development, cereal grain proteins should be more efficiently used to replace animal proteins. In the Nordic countries, wheat is the major source of cereal protein, followed by rye, oats, and barley. Although oats have been traditionally consumed as many staple foods in the Nordic countries and new oat-based food concepts are emerging, the potential of oats as a healthy and sustainable protein source is still underused. Oat protein is high in nutritional quality, and oats also contain unique phytochemicals and dietary fibres with proven health effects. Therefore, utilization of traditional wholegrain oat products to replace animal protein sources would increase both health-supporting components and cereal diversity in Nordic diets. While novel oat-based meat, milk, and dairy analogues do not contribute as much to dietary fibre, vitamin and mineral intake as corresponding whole grain products, they provide valuable and effective means to reduce animal protein intake, and thus, the environmental burden.
- Cereal food
- Healthy Nordic diet