Avocado is a nice fancy addition to any dish or beverage and leads to a delightful meal, and health and dining aficionados know this well. Our own observations would perhaps prove this: we see what is also known as “the alligator fruit” as a salad ingredient, tasty smoothie or milkshake additive, dip base and sandwich spread, among others. More than considering the benefits of Avocado, the culinary appeal has taken this tropical fruit by storm.
This green fruit has fast become a popular item in the typical food basket or food selections. In the last decade, avocado and guacamole mentions have increased on food service menus by 13%, while menu item count increased by 58% based on a study by the Hass Avocado Board. Imports from Mexico to the United States for example, has made the seasonal fruit available year-round. No doubt the hype is everywhere. Popular food stores have included avocado in their sandwiches and salads, putting more investment in promotions and advertising and leading to more craving and popularity of the avocado.
Before you start drooling and rush to the nearest store to indulge in an Avocado craving, it is a good habit to check what’s hot about this fruit not only in terms of taste but what it can do for us. Truly, the fuzz out there is alarmingly good and we do not want to miss anything. but could there be more to this fruit than taste and culinary options?
Finding out about the benefits of Avocado is a good start. Have a good look at these 4 benefits that I will share with you and get your gastronomic indulgence into action without feeling guilty!
Benefit 1: Avocado is full of good fats
Recent years have freed the Avocado from the unhealthy tag being known to be fatty. Many marketing and trading associations have long fought the battle against the message that Avocado is a fatty food and transformed it into a heart-healthy one. In spite of this, many health buffs are still unaware or cautious.
Here’s what dietitician.com clarifies:
One Avocado has 4 grams of protein, 15 gms carbohydrate and 31 grams of fat. So avocados are mostly fat. However, it is a good fat because avocados contain monosaturated fat (19 gms in 1 avocado) like olive oil and peanut oil.
Many of us are taken aback by the word fat, but remember that we are not just supposed to be conscious about having low fat in the diet but the right fat. (3) After the fat-drama, which we now know is just but a panic myth because avocado contains the right fat, there is no need to worry about its intake unless for medical reasons and assuming you are in an average healthy state. And surely, moderate amount is the key.
Barbara Davis, a dietitian from Health Focus International reminds that fats should only take a third of daily caloric intake. She says that one ounce of avocado, equal to about two table spoons, provides 4.5 grams of fat. Yes, yummy food no matter healthy is not something you can indulge in without control!
Benefit 2: Avocado is rich in nutrients that are anti-inflammatory and protect cells from damage
The George Mateljan foundation reports in whfood.org that Avocado is found to be rich in nutrients known to be anti-inflammatory: phytosterols, carotenoid anti-oxidants, omega 3 fatty acids and polyhydrolated fatty alcohols. All these may sound Greek to us but these nutrients prevent diseases such as osteoarthritis and rheumathoid arthritis. It is also linked to reduced risks of cardiovascular disease.
Additionally, carotenoids—which are found in abundance in Avocados—are also known to help in improving immune function, lowering risk of cancer, and contributing to protecting cells from damage due to aging and cancer.
Benefit 3: Avocado provides optimized absorption
It is also found that this fruit helps in the optimal absorption of the nutrients not only in the fruit itself but from other food consumed at the same time. This is because its enormous amounts of oleic acid makes it easier for the digestive track to form transport molecules that can help carry carotenoids and other nutrients into the body.
With many nutrients lost nowadays by more artificial food around us, it is vital to get the most of what we eat, and a good absorption of nutrients from what we eat definitely keeps us ahead of the race to health.
Benefit 4: Avocado is a good source of dietary fiber
Avocado provides about 8 grams of dietary fiber, which in turn helps to keep a healthy digestion and detoxify our body.
As a consequence, when taken in moderate amounts, Avocado also has as one of its benefits in weight loss. It is true that this fruit is high in calories, but because of its fiber content, it is also good in providing a high level of satiety—the feeling of fullness. This leads one to stop eating and hence control one’s calorie intake.
Round, healthy and delicious!
So much has been said about the healthy goodness and benefits of avocado, but it all boils down to serving it right and in the right amount. Avocado is full of good fats and therefore we should use it as our fat source and have just enough of that. Not too much.
Eat it alongside other healthy-nutrient food and you will have one nice meal that goes a long way to help your system strong and lively!
It's time to get those awesome Avocado recipes in 33 Healthy Veggie Meals in 12 Minutes or LessFeatured photo credit: ollesvenssonvia Flickr