Avocado is a unique fruit that is loaded with healthy fats and important nutrients. Unfortunately, many have been led to think of this fruit as nothing but a side dish in the form of guacamole. The delicious avocado should actually be a regular part of a healthy diet for a number of reasons. Here are just a few of the benefits of eating avocados on a regular basis.
- Helps to Reduce the Risk of Some Cancers
Since raw avocados are anti-inflammatory and contain a lot of important antioxidants that have cancer fighting capabilities. Consuming avocado could also mean less risk of certain cancers (prostate, skin and mouth, for example). The reason for this is that phytochemicals present in the fruit inhibit cancer cell growth which causes cancer cells to die.
Avocado has also proven useful for people going through chemotherapy. Chemotherapy often leaves patients severely lacking in certain vitamins and antioxidants- all of which avocado helps to replenish.
- Aids in Nutrient Absorption of Other Foods
Avocado is an incredible source of healthy fats. People need fat for overall health, especially brain health, but it also serves another purpose. The fat helps your body process/use nutrients. Fat absorbs vitamins and minerals that normally wouldn’t be completely used by the body. It literally acts like a sponge so when your body breaks down the fat, it also gains numerous other nutrients.
- Improves Heart Health
Another reason avocado’s impressive fat content is so good for the human body is that it protects your heart’s health. Most of the fat in the avocado is called oleic acid and studies have shown that it’s useful in reducing inflammation and protecting the heart from disease and stress. If you have a history of heart conditions in your family or already have a health condition, you definitely want look into to eating more of this fruit.
- Helps to Lower Bad Cholesterol
Again, fat comes into play. Monounsaturated fat is a healthy fat that helps lower bad cholesterol, which is also known as LDL. The reason this happens is because avocados are high in a compound called beta-sitosterol. This compound doesn’t only lower LDL but simultaneously raises HDL, which is the health cholesterol. A study published in the Archives of Medical Research proved just how effective avocados are at lowering bad cholesterol.
- Impressive Source of Fiber
The average woman is lacking roughly 5 to 10 grams of the recommend 35 grams of fiber she should consume on a daily basis. Instead of going to a fiber supplement, just have an avocado. One medium avocado has about 11 grams of both soluble and insoluble fiber, roughly 25% soluble and 75% insoluble. Fiber is very important for weight loss, digestive health and overall metabolic health.
- Avocados Support Eye Health
As mentioned earlier, avocados are high in different antioxidants but two of them are particularly important for eye health, Lutein and Zeaxanthin. These two antioxidants have been proven to reduce the risk of cataracts, glaucoma and macular degeneration. Avocados are useful in eye protection in all ages but are especially useful for the elderly.
- They Have an Insane Number of Vitamins and Minerals
This fruit is loaded with vitamins and minerals, more than 20 of them to be exact. These include:
- Vitamin K
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin B1, B2, B3, B5 and B6
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin A
All of these vitamins and minerals are necessary for health and if you can get all of them in one food, why not?
Avocados are just as healthy as they are delicious. They are also super versatile in terms of how you can prepare them. If you’re unsure of how to incorporate avocados into meals check out these recipes for inspiration. It is best to consume avocado raw or unprocessed to get the most nutritional benefit from them. Recipes like fried avocados wedges are delicious but you are going to be negating a lot of the fruit’s health benefits.