Recently my daughter was made aware of the medicinal properties of one of her favorite breakfast cereals when she woke up in the middle of the night with swollen eyes and hives (from what we still don’t know)! Not having many treatment options at 1 a.m., we resorted to what we had on hand. Benedryl and oatmeal.
As a dietitian, I often recommend oatmeal to help lower cholesterol, reduce blood pressure, and prevent athersclerosis. But the benefits of oatmeal go beyond the cereal bowl all the way to the bathtub!
Oats contain antioxidants that act to reduce inflammation, thus soothing itchy and irritated skin. Look at many higher-end “soothing” beauty care products like soaps, lotions, creams and shampoos and you will see oats popping up in the ingredient list.
To help soothe my daughter’s itchy skin, I made a simple homemade oatmeal bath. I took rolled oats and ground them into a fine powder in a coffee grinder (a food processor will work also). Once ground into powder, I added them directly to her bath water and used my hand to mix them in. Using unground oats is not recommended unless you want one heck of a mess after bath time!
If you don’t have a coffee grinder or food processor, you can simply put the rolled oats into a sock (or other fabric satchel) and put it under the running bath water.
Submerge the itchy area in the bathwater for 15-20 minutes and experience a relief from itchy skin.
Because putting oatmeal into the bathtub was such a “funny” idea to my 4 year old and 3 year old, we decided to say that we were “making oatmeal cookies”. So now, instead of saying that we are going to take an oatmeal bath, we get to “make cookies”, and who doesn’t like to make cookies! So turn your
lemons into lemonaid oatmeal into oatmeal cookies and remember that food is medicine.