Saturday 18 January, 2020

Five reasons why avocadoes are amazing

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

Instead of the phrase 'an apple a day keeps the doctor away', perhaps eating an avocado a day might have the same effect.

Avocados, known locally as zaboca, are part of a Caribbean diet and have long been praised for their delicious buttery taste and ability to go with pretty much any Caribbean dish.

However some might doubt the avocado’s healthiness due to its high-fat content – however, avocados are high in what is known as ‘good fats’. 

Here are just some of the healthy nutrients found in avocados:

1. Avocados are packed with vitamins

One 100-gram serving of avocado can yield significant nutrients, according to Healthline, including Vitamin K, which helps with blood clotting, folate (promotes healthy cell and tissue development), vitamin C (antioxidant, helps with cell repair), potassium (helps with muscle function, helps to reduce bloating).

Additionally, avocadoes also contain vitamin B5 (helps metabolise fats, proteins and enzymes), vitamin B6 (helps convert food into energy), and vitamin E (helps with immune system, cell function, and skin health). 

Avocadoes also contain small amounts of magnesium, manganese, copper, iron, zinc, phosphorous and vitamins A, B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin) and B3 (niacin).

This is coming with 160 calories, two grams of protein and 15 grams of healthy fats. Although it contains nine grams of carbs, seven of those are fibre, so there are only two "net" carbs, making this a low-carb friendly plant food.

2. Avocados are good for blood pressure

Avocados are high in potassium, and actually contain more potassium than bananas.

A 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving packs 14% of the recommended daily allowance (RDA), compared to 10% in bananas, which are a typical high-potassium food.

Having sufficient potassium has been shown in studies to result in reduced blood pressure, which lessens the risk of heart-related illnesses (heart attacks, strokes, kidney failure).


3. Avocados are ‘good fats’

Avocados are mostly fats, which has scared some people away from eating them. However fats are essential for the body and help with the absorption of nutrients, brain function, and with lowering cholesterol levels.

Avocadoes mostly contain monounsaturated fat, plus a small amount of saturated fat and polyunsaturated fat.

Most of that monounsaturated fat is oleic acid, the same fatty acid found in olives and olive oil. This type of fat is considered to be very healthy.

Want glowing skin? Try eating avocados.


4. Avocados keep you fuller for longer

Looking to lose a few pounds? Diet, more than exercise, has been shown to play a key role in weight loss.

A 2013 study showed that avocadoes, which are high in fiber, helped maintain feelings of fullness for up to three hours after their meal.

Avocadoes can therefore help stave off hunger cravings, resulting in less snacking (however there are no studies directly linking avocadoes to weight loss).

5. Avocado helps with inflammation

Studies have shown that avocadoes have helped in reducing pain associated with arthritis. Avocado/soybean unsaponifiables (ASUs), extracted from the avocado seed, has been shown to inhibit pain and inflammation associated with osteoarthritis.

Try this recipe for a Buddha Bowl courtesy Health Coach Paola Henderson and try adding in avocadoes

Do you eat avocadoes regularly?

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