Avocado is known to have essential nutrients, good for heart health, absorption of antioxidants, rich in fiber and potassium. It could also help in eye protection, cancer prevention, and eye health.
Avocado is considered both a fruit and vegetable, and it grows in a warm climate. It is considered a superfood with an array of health benefits ranging from improved digestion to cancer prevention. It is one of the unique fruits that is a source of healthy monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA), different from the rest of the fruits that produce carbs. Avocados are rich in nutrients packed with approximately 20 minerals and vitamins, and it is used in various recipes and salads.
Benefits of avocado
Several studies confirm the powerful health benefits of avocado and why it is essential to include this fruit in your diet.
It is incredibly nutritious
Avocado fruit is valued because of its nutrient content and because it is versatile as it is used in various dishes. With its main ingredient, guacamole, avocado is one of the favorite food among health enthusiasts. There are several types of avocados varying in shape, size, and color. Hass avocado is the most popular of often having an appearance like the alligator pear. The fruit has a yellow-green flesh consumed while many throw the skins and seeds, though some use ground seeds to make avocado tea. Consider some of the nutrients found in avocado weighing 100 grams.
It provides 26% of vitamin K’s daily value (DV) and 20% daily folate needs. It is also rich in vitamin C, B5, B6, and E, providing 17%, 14%, 13%, and 10% daily value, respectively. Additionally, it is rich in potassium, providing 14% of the DV and small amounts of copper, magnesium, manganese, zinc, iron, and phosphorous. The same amount of avocado has 160 calories, 15 grams of health, and two grams of protein. It is often used in a low-carb/high-fat diet since its 9 grams carbs have seven grams fiber, meaning it results in two grams carbs.
It is loaded with unsaturated fatty acids for a healthy heart
Avocado is a high-fat food, with 77% of its calories coming from fat, meaning that it is the fattiest plant food available. The monounsaturated fatty acid in avocado is called oleic acid, and it is also contained in olive oil. Fatty acids are believed to contributes to health benefits. Oleic acid is also known to reduce inflammation that could mitigate cancer. Avocado oil is also safe for cooking since it is resistant to oxidation caused by heat.
It is loaded with fiber
Avocado is rich in dietary fiber that is normally associated with reduced blood sugar spike, weight loss, and lower risk for coronary disease. Avocado has 25% of soluble fiber that feeds the good gut bacteria in the colon, which enables the body to function optimally. 100 grams of avocado serving harbors seven grams of fiber, contributing to 27% of the RDA
Avocado consumption can lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels
Bad cholesterol and triglycerides are the foremost culprits in heart-related disease that leads to fatalities. Blood markers such as cholesterol, inflammation, triglycerides, and blood pressure are key indicators of increased risk of coronary disease. Some eight controlled studies examined how avocado consumption affected these markers, and the finding showed the following:
- Total cholesterol significantly reduced.
- A 20% reduction of blood triglyceride
- The levels of LDL cholesterol lowered by 22%.
- The good cholesterol increased by 11%
Another study also indicated that the inclusion of avocado in a low-fat diet for vegetarians significantly enhanced their cholesterol profile.
Avocado is rich in potassium
Potassium deficiency is a common problem for many people. This mineral is essential in balancing electrical slope in one’s body cells and helps optimize other body functions. Avocado is high in potassium than a banana which is known for this mineral. A 3.5 ounce serving of avocado provides 14% of the daily recommended amount of potassium, dwarfing the 10% provided by bananas. According to many studies, a high potassium intake could reduce blood pressure, resulting in a stroke, heart attack, and kidney failure.
The fats in avocado could help absorb plant food nutrients
Nutrient intake is essential, but it is not enough; your body needs to absorb these nutrients to improve your health. Some nutrients from a plant-based diet are fat-soluble, meaning they can not be absorbed unless combined with fats. Some vitamins such as K, E, D, and A are fat-soluble, and some antioxidants like carotenoids also need fat to be utilized by the body. One study showed that incorporating avocado oil or avocado in your salad could enhance the absorption of antioxidants by 15 folds. This fruit has a double benefit by providing the nutrients needed and helping the body take advantage of other nutrients provided by other foods.
Apart from helping in the utilization of antioxidants, avocado is also rich in antioxidants such as carotenoids, zeaxanthin, and lutein, promoting good eye health. Some studies suggest that these antioxidants could help minimize the risk of macular degeneration and cataracts commonly seen in older adults.
Avocados may prevent cancer
There is limited scientific evidence that shows that avocado may contribute to cancer prevention and treatment. One test-tube study demonstrated that avocado could help reduce the side effects associated with chemotherapy. Additionally, some studies have shown that avocado extracts could retard the growth of some cancer cells like prostate cancer. Remember, though, that these studies were conducted on isolated cells and cannot necessarily produce the same result inside a person.
Over the years, avocado is regarded as a weight loss-friendly food. One study investigating avocado’s effect on calorie intake showed that people taking avocado with meals had a 28% lower appetite to eat after five hours and felt 23% more satisfied than those who did not take avocado. The result of this study indicates that consumption of avocado leads to weight loss in the long run. The high fiber content in avocado coupled with low carb content is two elements that give avocado an edge in the weight loss chart.
Good for bone health
One-half of a medium-size avocado provides roughly 25% of an individual daily required intake of vitamin K. This vitamin is an essential mineral for promoting bone health. Many people think about osteoporosis’s focus on calcium and vitamin d Deficiency; however, vitamin K also enhances bone health by facilitating the body’s calcium intake and reducing unhealthy urinary calcium excretion.
The bottom line
Avocado is a super fruit with several benefits to the body. Many health advocates include this high-fat fruit in the list of a must food worth taking with your food. Its health benefits range from good heart health to absorption of vital antioxidants that optimize the general body functions