fun facts from behind
The health benefits of avocados. Why you should eat them Daily!
POSTED BY Rosemary ON Apr 10th, 2012
Written By: Rosemary Seguin CNP, NNCP
Avocados are packed with nutrients, good healthy fats and they taste great too! Unfortunately avocados sometimes get a “bum rap” due to their high fat content. It’s true that about 85% of its calories come from fat but the fat found in avocados provides many researched-based health benefits!
Here are 5 great reasons to consume avocados daily or on a regular basis:
1) It is packed full of nutrients and good fats!
Here I’ve listed for you the top vitamins and minerals in the highest amounts found in 1 cup of avocado (approx. 1 medium size):
Heart healthy fats: 21.4g
Dietary Fiber: 9.78 g (39% daily intake)
Vitamin K: 30.66 mcg (38% daily intake)
Folate: 118.26 mcg (30% daily intake)
Vitamin C: 14.6 mg (24% daily intake)
Vitamin B5: 2.03 mg (20% daily intake)
Potassium: 708.1 mg (20% daily intake)
Vitamin B6: .38mg (19% daily intake)
2) Contains anti-inflammatory benefits
The fat in avocado is an anti-inflammatory meaning it keeps inflammation under control. This is especially useful in cases of arthritis (both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis). Studies show the fats and nutrients found in avocados also have the ability to prevent arthritis as well.
3) Avocados are a great source of carotenoids
Caratenoids are very important to our diet because they have a variety of beneficial properties.
· Protect against eye disease
· Combat vitamin A deficiency
· Powerful antioxidant
· Support and enhance the Immune system
· May be a powerful anti-aging agent and a powerful anti-cancer agent
· Help support healthy bones and a healthy reproductive system
Avocados themselves aren’t just a rich source of carotenoids, the fat found in avocados also helps us absorb carotenoids from other foods! Therefore eating other foods (like dark leafy veggies and fruits and vegetables with brightly coloured pigments like red peppers, carrots, yams, spinach, kale, collards, tomatoes) paired with avocado will help your body absorb more of these amazing carotenoids. A great way to do this is to add sliced avocado to a mixed salad.
4) Avocados can lower cholesterol and decrease your risk of heart disease.
Research has found that oleic acid, a fat found in avocados, can help lower cholesterol levels. One study found that individuals eating an avocado-rich diet had a significant decrease in total cholesterol levels including LDL “bad” cholesterol and their levels of HDL “good” cholesterol increased by 11%.
High cholesterol is a risk factors for heart disease. Therefore, the cholesterol-lowering properties of avocado can help keep your heart healthy and happy.
5) Avocados are fantastic for toddlers and kids!
Because avocados are so creamy and delicious kids usually love the taste and texture. Plus they are packed with important nutrients kids need like fiber, vitamin K, C, B5, folate and potassium. I recommend to start with avocados at 12 months of age and up. For little ones try mashing it up with a little extra virgin olive oil or their favourite pureed fruit or veggie. It goes particularly well with pureed yams, squash and/or carrots. For older kids try using it as a spread to replace cream cheese, mayo or butter in sandwiches or hamburgers. Or, add some slices to a salad or a smoothie. Kids won’t even know it’s there! (These are also great ways for adults to incorporate avocados too!)
Now that you know the amazing health benefits of avocados, don’t be shy to include them as part of your daily diet.
There are so many ways you can enjoy an avocado and even those that don’t particularly like them can include them in their diet in many ways and you won’t even know they are there!
If you want to know more about how to include avocados in your diet with different recipes and tips, stay tuned for my next blog post later this week!