An Avocado a Day Keeps the Doctor Away

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health benefits of avocadosEat an avocado every day

Why you may certainly be wondering – is this such a great idea?
On a recent bike ride with a friend (a paleo eater), we had a lengthy discussion about the health benefits found in consuming an avocado a day.

Personally fond of avocados myself, and living in the desert southwest, they – not surprisingly – top my weekly shopping list.  After our ride and ensuing conversation I did some further research about the health benefits of avocados which has indeed – led me to eating an avocado, EVERY DAY.

Why is an avocado nutritious?

According to the California Avocado Commission

“Based on a single serving of avocado (1/5 medium avocado or 30g), avocados contain the following milligrams of Omega 3, Omega 6 and Omega 9:
OMEGA 3 = 40mg
OMEGA 6 = 500mg
OMEGA 9 = 30mg

The total carbohydrates of an avocado (serving size 1/5 medium [30g/1oz]) is 3 grams or 1 percent of the daily value.
The total calories of an avocado (serving size 1/5 medium [30g/1oz]) is 50 per serving (35 calories from fat).

The avocado is virtually the only fruit that has monounsaturated fat (the good fat). This good fat can help boost HDL (good cholesterol) and lower LDL (bad cholesterol), which is especially important for people with diabetes, as they are at greater risk of heart disease.”

Avocados contain natural plant sterols which may help to control cholesterol levels.  The sterols present in avocados are called beta-sitasterols.  Avocados are a nutrient dense food choice, providing substantial vitamins and minerals with a relatively low caloric impact.  There are twenty vitamins and minerals in a serving of avocado making it a star choice in the fruit and vegetable isle.

See the nutritional profile of an avocado in detail at SELFNutritonData.

Why are avocados beneficial for your liver?

“Avocados not only contain monounsaturated fat, but also function as a low-glycemic food. According to a 2007 animal study published in the “World Journal of Gastroenterology,” daily consumption of monounsaturated fat and limited saturated fat may help lower triglyceride levels in the liver, particularly among individuals with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.”- According to Livestrong.com

Do I buy organic or non-organic avocados?

“California Avocados rank among the lowest of all fruits and vegetables for pesticide use. Neither organic nor conventional avocados have measurable chemical residues in the pulp, so both are good choices. The choice is yours to make but, either way, we hope you will continue to enjoy them often!”- According to the California Avocado Commission

What is the trick for picking out a ripe avocado?

Place an avocado in your hand; it should be firm but also give a little with a light squeeze.  The avocado shouldn’t look shrunken, really dark or be easily manipulated.

Eat an Avocado!

In its simplest form it’s so easy to transport and eat when ever and where ever you like.  Simply cut the avocado in half and one side will retain the pit – grab a spoon, scoop and eat.  Take a point of a knife and carefully stab the pit until it releases its grasp from the other half of the avocado.  By gently hitting the pit on the counter it’ll release itself from the knife;  use caution not to cut yourself with that maneuver.

Sliced avocados are a wonderful addition to any sandwich or wrap.  They’re easily transformed into one of my favorite appetizers – guacamole.  When I store a cut avocado or dip I always place the pit in the dip to help prevent browning.  You can also rub lemon on the avocado like other fruits to prevent browning as well.

To read more on dietary guidelines visit the USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans website.

Comments

  1. Susanna says:

    Picazzo’s Pizza serves a dish called avocado delish that any avocado lover would swoon over. They mash a ripe avocado, squeeze some fresh lemon juice over it, stir in salt and pepper, and this is basically the sauce for cooked, drained pasta, with black olives and chopped tomatoes folded in. SooOOOooo good!

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  1. [...]   Check out She Sugar’s previous post on the health benefits of avocados -  “An Avocado a Day Keeps the Doctor Away” [...]

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