Avocados were once treated by many as merely an ingredient used to create guacamole for their Super Bowl celebrations. Thankfully times have changed and these funny looking vegetables are reaping the benefits of all of the good press they have received in recent years from health gurus and dieticians. Why all this fuss about avocados? Read on and find out…
Apparently avocados are packed full of all kinds of healthy goodness along with the yummy deliciousness they provide to the recipes they are used in. In general, avocados can improve overall health in many ways. One study showed that when eating salads, the body absorbs up to five times more carotenoids when an avocado is included in the recipe than those without. They also provide a boost to our immune and nervous systems.
More specific examples of the benefits of avocados include:
- Eye health. These veggies are packed with carotenoid luteins, a nutrient that is important for eye health. They are particularly good for fighting macular degeneration and cataracts.
- Controlling blood sugar. Avocados contain good fats and soluble fiber that help to keep blood sugar levels steady throughout the day.
- Cancer prevention. The oleic acid found in avocados has been found to help combat breast cancer. They also contain compounds that target pre-cancerous and canercous cells in the mouth while not affecting healthy tissues.
- Heart health. Avocados are rich in beta-sitosterol, a substance shown to help lower cholesterol levels. They are also a good source of folate, vitamin E, glutothione and monosaturated fats that are also good for the heart.
- Lowering stroke risk. The combination of of folate and beta-sitosterol that help lower your cholesterol also help lower your chance of having a stroke.
- Reduce the rick of birth defects. The same folate that lowers your cholesterol and stroke risk also has been shown the risk of neural tube defects and spina bifida.
As if that isn’t enough evidence to make you want to add more avocados to your diet, they can also help fight the signs of aging, clear up bad breath and have anti-inflammatory properties. If you wish to add more green to your diet, slice or chop a fresh avocado and add it to your sandwiches and salads. You can also mash them up and blend with condiments to create unique and delicious sandwich spreads and salad dressings. You can also blend them into drinks such as milkshakes and smoothies. Here are some recipes that you may enjoy:
- Avocado quick bread recipe
- Cobb salad recipe
- Guacamole recipe
- Avocado daiquiri
- Avocado sandwich spread
- Mandarin avocado salad