When the experts call avocados a “superfood”, they aren’t kidding. There’s a long list of reasons why this fruit is good for you, and it’s delicious too!
Avocados are one of our most versatile foods.
They can be:
- eaten on their own or mixed into salads
- used as toppings for chicken, fish, eggs and more
- used to make sauces and dressings
- used as a substitute for bad fats in baked goods
I love mashing it with some crushed garlic, lemon or lime juice, olive oil, some finely chopped red onions, and a pinch of himalayan salt. Versatile guacamole style and goes with just about anything. You can make you own with whatever flavours you like.
Avocados are available year round and are a good addition to your daily diet, but you need to be careful. They can be a great weight loss tool but you want to enjoy them in moderation. Eating too much can end up working against your weight loss goals. But that’s always important in everything and anything we do … moderation and balance.
But, Aren’t Avocados Too High in Fat?
Yes, avocados are high in fat, but the fat that they contain is the “good kind.”
They are high in omega 3 fatty acids, which reduce cholesterol and cut the risk of heart disease. Each cup of avocado contains about 3 grams of protein and very little sugar. It also is high in vitamins K, vitamin B5, magnesium, phosphorus, and iron.
FACT: Avocados contain more potassium per gram than bananas.
Besides being good for your heart, avocados are healthy in many other ways.
- They reduce inflammation and regulate blood sugar.
- They control blood pressure, improve vision and strengthen the immune system.
- Their high fiber keeps your digestive system on track and keep you feeling full longer.
- Plus, the high levels of vitamin C and vitamin E that they contain are excellent for your skin.
How Can I Tell If My Avocado is Ripe?
Have you ever cut into an avocado and found it too hard or overly ripe? So frustrating and disappointing! You can tell when an avocado is ready to eat when it is a little bit soft, but doesn’t have any sunken spots or cracks.
Some people peel back the stem to see if an avocado has gone bad. If you pull off the stem and see green, it is ripe. If you can’t pull it off, it isn’t ready. Pull it off and see brown, then put it back – it is going to have rotten spots.
How Can I Keep them Fresh Longer?
You can keep your avocados on the counter if you’re going to use them soon. If not, then store them in the refrigerator. The cold air will stop the ripening process.
QUICK TIP: After cutting avocado, you can keep it green and beautiful by leaving the pit in, sprinkling it with a little lemon juice, and wrapping it in plastic wrap.
A Word of Avocado Caution
Avocados can be a great help for your diet. Using it as a healthy fat can keep you feeling full longer and stave off hunger.
I’m not one to count calories, but it’s important to note that avocados are calorically dense foods. Use it to replace other fats, and keep your intake to about half to three quarters of one per day.
What’s the Healthiest Part to Eat?
The healthiest part of an avocado is the area that’s just under the skin. It has the highest concentration of antioxidants, so make sure you scrape the inside of the skin, as best as you can, after peeling. The inside of the skin has phytosterols which are very unique healthy fats (beta-sitosterol, campesterol, and stigmasterol) and they help reduce inflammation in our body.
You can use avocado as a substitute for butter when baking, add it to a smoothie, or use it in place of fats in salad dressings or pasta sauces.
So go ahead and enjoy this rich superfood guilt-free and keep heart healthy.
Yours in best health,
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