Avocados (also called alligator pear or butter fruits) are a typical member of the family of berries that grows in warm climates. These berries are very popular and loved by many. Research even shows that its consumption in the U.S alone has risen more than four times it was last 20 years ago. Today, you can find avocados almost everywhere. While strolling through the farmers market, they’ll be sited there, or even in grocery stores and our chocolate pudding recipes.
People’s love for this fruit grows rapidly as its sales growth is way larger than other fruits. In 2015, it was dubbed “America’s new favourite fruit” by Washington’s post. But what are avocados? Are they any health benefits of it? Yes, this fruit has numerous benefits, and we’ll cover it all for you in this article.
What Is An Avocado?
The avocado is an evergreen, tropical tree producing a green, pear-shaped, nutrient-packed fruit. The name avocado isn’t just for the fruit alone, as the tree also bears it. This fruit provides an adequate amount of monounsaturated fatty acids and is a rich source of most vitamins and minerals. Incorporating avocados into a healthy diet can provide numerous health benefits to you.
What Are The Health Benefits Of Avocados?
1. Avocados are Highly Nutritious
Avocados stand as a primary source of essential nutrients, most of which are lacking in our modern diets. They contain a high amount of vitamin C, E, K, and B6, folate, niacin, riboflavin, potassium, magnesium, Pantothenic acid, lutein, Omega-3 fatty acids and beta carotene. Consumption of fats helps delay the breakdown of carbohydrates, which keeps the blood sugar levels stable.
Roughly a 201 grams of avocado contains;
- 322 calories
- 30 grams of fat
- 17 grams of carbs
- 4 grams of proteins
- 14 grams of fibre
- 28% of the daily value of Vitamin E
- 35% DV of Vitamin K
- 22% DV of Vitamin C
- 21% DV of Potassium
- 20% DV of Riboflavin (B2)
- 12% DV of Manganese
- 42% DV of Copper
- 41% DV of Folate
- 14% DV of Magnesium
- 30% DV of Pyridoxine (B6)
- 56% DV of Pantothenic acid
- 22% DV of Niacin (B3)
The facts stated above prove that avocados are highly nutritious fruits and a good source of healthy fats and fibre combined with many vitamins and minerals. Daily consumption could help boost the overall quality of your diet.
2. Avocados help lower the risk factors of heart disease.
Regular consumption of avocados could help protect the heart against certain diseases. It achieves this by boosting the level of heart-protective HDL cholesterol while decreasing the oxidized LDL cholesterol. The LDL cholesterol here is widely related to atherosclerosis.
Research shows that in every 100g of avocado consumed, the body receives 76 milligrams of natural plant sterols known as betasiterol. Daily consumption of beta-sitosterol and other natural plant sterols will certainly help keep your healthy cholesterol level in check.
Also, the level of magnesium and potassium contained in avocados is beneficial for regulating blood pressure. This helps in protecting the heart against certain diseases.
3. Avocados Help in Preventing Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis is a common condition in seniors and is characterized by a reduction in bone mass. This leads to weakness in the strength of the bone, leaving it susceptible to fracture. Avocado is a rich source of vitamin K – a nutrient essential for bone health. Just consuming half an avocado will help a lot as it contains nearly 18% of the daily value of vitamin K. Vitamin K aids in boosting calcium absorption and decreases the level of urinary excretion of calcium.
4. These Fruits are Good for Gut Health
The daily value of dietary fibre is 28grams, and avocados provide about 14 grams. That’s almost half of the Daily Value. Daily consumption of fibre doesn’t just help for a healthy weight check, but it’s also important for the health of the digestive system. It fosters the growth of healthy bacteria and reduces fecal bile acid concentration. When there’s a high concentration of fecal bile in the system, it may lead to intestinal inflammations related to the growth of microbes and can cause colon cancer.
5. Improves Food Digestion
Fibre promotes healthy digestion. It doesn’t break down into energy but rather absorbs water to make stools soft and loose. Also, a diet rich in fibre reduces the risk of developing the degenerative condition of diverticulitis. This condition is caused by the growth of the diverticula in the colon. A single avocado provides approximately 14 grams of fibre, which is about 13 percent of the recommended daily fibre intake for men and almost twenty-one percent for women.
6. Avocado is also a good choice for Pregnant and Breastfeeding women.
The health benefits of avocados extend to pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers. They are packed with healthy monounsaturated fats, including omega-3 fatty acids and fibre. Avocados also have high iron levels, which is necessary for the fetus’s growth and development, not forgetting that it contains magnesium, which aids digestion and helps with bowel movements. Therefore, these foods are not only good for pregnant women but also their unborn babies.
Another benefit of avocados for pregnant and breastfeeding women is the ability to increase carotenoid absorption. The demand for carotenoids in the fetus suggests that maternal intake of these substances should be closely monitored. In particular, pregnant women should emphasize their beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin consumption. Avocados are excellent sources of these fat-soluble carotenoids. This makes them ideal for developing the fetus’ brain, eyes, and immune system.
Also, avocados are high in folate. Folate helps to regulate blood pressure and regulate sugar levels. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should make sure they eat a lot of avocados. This fruit contains about 10% of the recommended daily folate for pregnant and breastfeeding women. Its low-GI properties mean that pregnant women can eat up to half of an avocado. The good news is that avocados can also be a great addition to a healthy breakfast.
7. Avocado Fruit Helps Prevent Cancer
Avocados contain several anti-cancer properties, including high levels of the antioxidant vitamin E. The American Chemical Society has called avocados “awesome” with high amounts of vitamin B6, potassium, and fibre. There are also high in lutein, which reduces the risk of breast cancer. In addition, avocados contain large amounts of glutathione, a powerful antioxidant that helps the liver detoxify the body.
A recent study published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry has revealed that consuming avocados can help prevent cancer. These fruits also contain tocopherols and carotenoids, which many have vitamin E activity. The phytochemicals present in avocados inhibit the growth of prostate cancer cells, killing them. This is great news for people with prostate cancer because avocados can offer important protection against cancer.
8. Avocado Fruit Helps With EyeSight and Brain Functioning.
Avocados contain carotenoid pigments (such as lutein) that protect against free radicals. These pigments are crucial for healthy eye tissue, as they are necessary for good vision and brain function. Researchers have found that eating one avocado a day can improve eye health by facilitating the absorption of important fat-soluble vitamins. This fruit also contains oleic acid, which is essential for optimal absorption of carotenoids. Carotenoids are plant pigments important for eye health and protection against age-related eye disease.
In one study, avocado consumption increased macular pigment density (MPD) and improved cognitive function. It also improved memory and problem-solving skills in healthy older adults. This avocado-based research was supported by the Hass Avocado Board and Tufts University. However, avocados do contain phytochemicals that may benefit the brain and eye.
9. Avocado Fruit Helps in Decreasing the Risk of Depression
Avocado is high in healthy fats and folate, which plays a role in overall dietary health. It prevents the buildup of homocysteine in the body, inhibiting the brain’s circulation and causing cognitive dysfunction. They are also a good source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin D.
A recent study revealed that eating foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids and fibre could reduce the risk of depression and anxiety. Avocado fruit, for instance, also contains folate, which is essential for a good mood. Additionally, it contains tryptophan, an amino acid that plays a role in maintaining a normal blood sugar level. Eating eggs and avocados daily is a good way to improve your mental health. They are low-calorie, which is another benefit.
10.It helps To Deal With Excess Body fat.
Researchers at the University of California, San Diego and the Hass Avocado Board have all endorsed the health benefits of avocados for people’s weight. They contain high-fat levels, but this fat is beneficial because it helps keep the body healthy and lower blood sugar levels. Researchers also found that the amount of fat consumed per serving was significantly higher when fat-soluble carotenoids were present in the blood. Avocados are high in fibre, which means that eating them can lower blood cholesterol and help people lose weight by boosting their insulin sensitivity and promoting weight loss.
The avocado fruit possesses an amazing amount of nutrients and are highly rich in fibre, B6, Vitamin C, Potassium, Vitamin E, Folate and copper. Daily consumption of this fruit may be beneficial to your health in various ways, including lowering the risk factors of heart disease, preventing osteoporosis, improving digestion, and promoting gut health.
These fruits are also great for pregnant women.