10 Proven Health Benefits of Avocado
Avocado tree is classified as member of flowering plants and scientifically in family lauraceae and genus persea. Cultivation of the avocado is mostly done in the Mediterranean and the tropical climates in the world. Its binomial name is persea Americana. It is believed that it’s native to Central America and Mexico. Avocado has much higher fats compared to other fruits and it’s of much help in health matters as it contains lots of fiber, minerals (Potassium, copper) and vitamins (K, E, C, B). There are different kind of avocado but the most popular type is Hassavocado. They are of different shapes like round shape or pear shaped. Avocado colors differ from green to black. One avocado weight ranges from 220 grams to 1.4kg.
PROVEN BENEFITS OF AVOCADOS
Avocado fruit is highly beneficial to the health and it is rich in fats. Scientific research has proven that these facts are true about avocados
- IT HAS MORE POTASSIUM COMPARED TO OTHER FRUITS LIKE BANANAS
Potassium is of much help to the body as it assists in maintaining the electrical gradients in the body cells. Study has shown that increased intake of potassium helps in reducing blood pressure. Blood pressure in human beings is a risk factor that can lead to stroke, kidney failure and heart attack. It also helps in energy metabolism and in biochemical cellular reactions. This means it is important in protein synthesis from the amino acids. Avocado helps during the conversion of glucose to glycogen that is stored in the liver for future usage. Potassium is also beneficial inbuilding muscle and normal growth in human beings. These benefits of potassium show how worth it is to include avocado in your diet.
- AVOCADO IS HIGHLY NUTRITIOUS
Avocado can be added to any kind of dish because it has a good flavor and has a rich texture. Guacamole is the main ingredient in avocado. The fruit has become popular among many people more so for the people who are observing diet. Avocado is prized due to its nutritious properties and it is highly recommended by nutrionists. It has varities of nutrients which includes 20 different type of vitamins and minerals.
Below is an analysis of nutrients contained in an avocado (100 gram avocado)
- Foliate – 20% of the RDA
- Potassium – 14% of the RDA
- Vitamin B5 – 14%OF THE RDA
- VITAMIN K -26% OF THE RDA
- Vitamin E- 10% of the RDA
- Vitamin C – 17% of theRDA
- Vitamin B6 – 13% if the RDA
Likewise, Avocado has a little amount of zinc, phosphorous, manganese, copper, magnesium, iron, Vitamin B1, and Vitamin B3. Also, it contains 2 grams of proteins, calories of up to 160, healthy fats of 15 grams, 7 grams of fiber and 9 grams of carbs. Avocado is often known as alligator pear and do not contain sodium or cholesterol.
- CONSUMPTION OF AVOCADO CAN LOWER TRIGLYCERIDE AND CHOLESTEROL LEVELS IN THE BODY
Heart attack is one of the most silent killer disease in the world. Once in a study, there was an experiment done in which people were divided into two groups. One group ate avocados while the other group did not eat.
From the study, it was found out that avocados can:
- Significantly reduce the cholesterol level in the body
- It can lower up to 22% of the LDL cholesterol
- Increase up to 11% of the HDL “good “cholesterol
Cholesterol profile in human beings can be improved when an avocado is often included in a low fat vegetarian diet.
- FATS IN AVOCADO CAN HELP ABSORB NUTRIENTS FROM THE PLANT FOODS.
Nutrients not only need to be consumed but also to be absorbed in the body. The amount of the nutrients consumed doesn’t matter, what matter is the amount to be digested, absorbed and be used in the body. Antioxidants like carotenoids and vitamins like A, D, E and K need combination of fats to be utilized in the body. They are termed as fat soluble nutrients. A study showed that addition of avocado or avocado oil in the salad increases the level of antioxidant absorption by up to 15%.
This fact absolutely tells us to include a fat source in the food we eat so as to increase the value of nutrients in other food plants, Otherwise, the food is useless and can go to waste and since it won’t be absorbed by the body.
- AVOCADOS OFFERS PROTECTION TO THE EYES
Nutrients such as zeaxanthin and lutein are so much important in the eye health. A study showed that there is risk reduction of macular and cataracts degeneration most common in the aged. Avocadoes have high antioxidants in themselves but they also increase the absorption of the antioxidants from other foods.
- AVOCADOS CONTAIN HIGH LEVELS OF FIBER
Fiber has many health benefits as it helps in reduction of blood sugar spikes and weight loss. Avocado has a large amount of fiber the helps reduce the risk of getting many diseases. Fiber is usually a plant matter that is indigestible and it is divided into soluble and insoluble fiber.
Soluble fiber is of great importance in the optimal function and it helps in feeding of the friendly gut bacteria from the intestine. A study done showed that 25% of the avocado fiber are soluble whereas 75% are insoluble. In a 100 grams of avocado, it has 7 grams of fiber which is equivalent to 27% of the daily recommended amount for metabolic health.
- AVOCADO CONTAINS MONOUNSATURATED FATTY ACIDS WHICH ARE HEALTHY FOR THE HEART
Avocados contain oleic fat. These fats are major components of the olive oil and they are responsible for the beneficial effects of the olive oil. Avocado is ranked as the fattest plant food because it has 77% of the calories. This makes it be termed as high fat food. Oleic acid has helped in reducing inflammation and has effects which are beneficial on the genes linked to cancer. Avocado oil is safe for cooking since it is resistant to heat induced oxidation.
- AVOCADO HELPS IN LOSING WEIGHT
Avocado has two attributes that promote weight loss which are high fiber and low carbs. A study of two different groups was done. One group was directed to eat a meal with avocado while the other group ate the same meal with no avocado. Later questions related to hunger and satisfaction were asked. The group that ate food containing avocado reported that they felt 23% more satisfied and they had 28% lower desire to eat after 5 hours. Holding this as the truth means that including avocados in the diet could lead to less consumption of calories which can promote weight loss.
- AVOCADO MAY HELP IN PREVENTION OF CANCER
There is less evidence that avocado can help in prevention of cancer but one study showed that it can help in reducing the side effects of chemotherapy in human lymphocytes. Prostate cancer cells can be inhibited from the avocado extract. However, these studies do not prove what happens in living cells of breathing person because the research was done in isolated cells.
- SYMPTOMS OF ARTHRITIS CAN BE REDUCED BY THE HELP OF AVOCADO EXTRACT
Arthritis is one of the chronic problem that people may have for their entire lives and mostly it is found in the western countries. Arthritis of the bones symptoms (osteoarthritis) can be reduced by consumption of extract from the avocado and soybean oil which is called the avocado and soybean unsaponifiables.
OTHER BENEFITS OF AVOCADO
- They are very delicious. Avocados are healthy food loaded with lots of nutrients. They take some days to ripen and the soft feel after touching makes you know it is ripe. They can be added to many recipes and salads or you can eat them plain. They are incredible, awesome and heart-healthy food which should be recommended to all people.
- People who contain avocados in their diet tend to be healthier than the avocado non-consumers. This is true because after a study, the avocado consumers weighed less with low body fat and had a low Body Mass Index.
- It also protects the liver from damage. Liver damage is mainly caused by Hepatitis C. Avocado is of benefit to the liver because
- It produces an antioxidant called glutathione which is of much help in protecting liver cells damage and removing out harmful substances from the liver. It was found out that those who suffered from liver disease had low amount of glutathione and the amount can be increased by consuming avocados.
- a) It has vitamin C and E- These Vitamins help in neutralizing free radicals that help in protecting liver from damage.
- b) It also has vitamin E and K that helps in reducing inflammation in the liver.
NUTRITION FACTS OF AVOCADOS
Avocado contains 73% of water, 15% of fat, 8.5% carbohydrates and 2% proteins. The following are some of the nutrients contained in the avocado
79% of the carbohydrate contained in an avocado is fiber. Fiber plays many roles in body health as it regulates appetite, reduces the risks of getting various diseases. Half an avocado may contain 4.5 grams of fiber.
Avocados has monosaturated fatty acids called the oleic acid. Oleic acid is found in large percentage in olive oil. Oleic acid helps in reducing inflammations and it has health benefit on the effect of the cancer.
- VITAMINS AND MINERALS
Below are the most common vitamins and minerals
- Vitamin k1 – helps in blood clotting and the health of the bones
- Potassium – that controls blood pressure
- Copper – helps in heart health
- Vitamin E -which is antioxidant
- Vitamin B6 – helps in conversion of food to energy
- Vitamin C – it is an antioxidant and it helps in skin health
- Folate (B9) – it is important in pregnant women as it helps in functioning of the normal cells and the growth of the tissue
- Other rich compounds in avocados;
- Persenone A and B- they are antioxidants that prevents inflammation and cancer in the body.
- D-Mannoheptulose – it helps in controlling the blood sugar since it is a type of sugar
- Carotenoids – some of the carotenoids in avocado includes lutein and zeaxanthin and they are of benefit to the eye health.