BENEFITS OF AVOCADO
- Avocado is a green, pear-shaped fruit often called an “alligator pear.” It is loaded with healthy fats, fiber and various important nutrients.
- Potassium is an important mineral that most people don't get enough of. Avocados are very high in potassium, which should support healthy blood pressure levels.
- Avocados and avocado oil are high in monounsaturated oleic acid, a heart-healthy fatty acid that is believed to be one of the main reasons for the health benefits of olive oil.
- Avocados tend to be rich in fiber — about 7% by weight, which is very high compared to most other foods. Fiber may have important benefits for weight loss and metabolic health.
- Numerous studies have shown that eating avocado can improve heart disease risk factors like total, “bad” LDL and “good” HDL cholesterol, as well as blood triglycerides.
- One dietary survey found that people who ate avocados had a much higher nutrient intake and a lower risk of metabolic syndrome.
- Studies have shown that eating avocado or avocado oil with vegetables can dramatically increase the number of antioxidants you take in.
- Avocados are high in antioxidants, including lutein and zeaxanthin. These nutrients are very important for eye health and lower your risk of macular degeneration and cataracts.
- Some test-tube studies have shown that nutrients in avocados may have benefits in preventing prostate cancer and lowering side effects of chemotherapy. However, human-based research is lacking.
- Studies have shown that avocado and soybean oil extracts can significantly reduce symptoms of osteoarthritis.
- Avocados may aid weight loss by keeping you full longer and making you eat fewer calories. They're also high in fiber and low in carbs, which may promote weight loss.
- Avocados have a creamy, rich, fatty texture and blend well with other ingredients. Therefore, it’s easy to add this fruit to your diet. Using lemon juice may prevent cut avocados from browning quickly.
- The Bottom Line Avocados are an excellent food, loaded with nutrients, many of which are lacking in the modern diet. They’re weight loss friendly, heart healthy and, last but not least, taste incredible.
One-third of a medium avocado (50 g) has 80 calories and contributes nearly 20 vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients, making it a heart-healthy choice to help meet nutrient needs. Although phytonutrients are not essential, research suggests they may promote human health.
The Dietary Guidelines for Americans and the American Heart Association recommend eating less nutrient-poor foods and limiting the amount of saturated fat, trans fat, added sugars and sodium consumed. The majority of fats in one’s diet should be heart-healthy monounsaturated or polyunsaturated; more than 75 percent of the fat in avocados is unsaturated, good fat.
Why naturally good fats? Because the body needs some dietary fat in moderation to help with absorption of nutrients. Good fats, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, do not raise LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels..
Monounsaturated Fats(5 G PER SERVING)
A "good fat." Monounsaturated fat helps to lower LDL (bad) blood cholesterol if used in place of saturated and trans fats. Keeping your LDL level low reduces your risk of heart disease and stroke. Eaten in place of unhealthy fats, these fats may help people with type 2 diabetes manage their blood sugar.
Polyunsaturated Fats(1 G PER SERVING)
Polyunsaturated fat is one of the healthy fats, along with monounsaturated fat. Polyunsaturated fat is different than saturated fat and trans fat. These unhealthy fats can increase your risk for heart disease and other health problems.
Pantothenic Acid(0.7 MG/15% DV PER SERVING)
Avocados are a good source of Pantothenic acid, a B-vitamin that helps the body convert food to energy.
Dietary Fiber(3 G/11% DV PER SERVING)
Avocados are a good source of Dietary Fiber and consuming foods rich in fiber may reduce the risk of heart disease, obesity, and type 2 diabetes. Dietary fiber adds bulk to your diet and makes you feel full faster, helping you control your weight. It helps digestion and helps prevent constipation. Most Americans don't eat enough dietary fiber.
Folate(45 MCG/10% DV PER SERVING)
Avocados are a good source of folate. Promotes healthy cell and tissue development. This is especially important during periods of rapid cell division and growth such as infancy and pregnancy. Folate is also essential for metabolism of homocysteine and helps maintain normal levels of this amino acid.
Vitamin K(11 MCG/10% DV PER SERVING)
Avocados are a good source of Vitamin K, an essential vitamin the body needs to stay healthy and that plays an important role in blood clotting. It is known as the clotting vitamin because without it blood would not clot. If you don’t have enough vitamin K, you may bleed too much. Some studies suggest that vitamin K helps maintain strong bones in the elderly.
Copper(0.1 MG/10% DV PER SERVING)
Copper works with iron to help the body form red blood cells. It also helps keep the blood vessels, nerves, immune system, and bones healthy. Copper also aids in iron absorption.
Riboflavin(0.10 MG/8% DV PER SERVING)
Known as vitamin B2, Riboflavin is naturally present in some foods and is an essential component of two major coenzymes, flavin mononucleotide (FMN; also known as riboflavin-5'-phosphate) and flavin adenine dinucleotide (FAD). These coenzymes play major roles in energy production; cellular function, growth, and development; and metabolism of fats, drugs, and steroids.
Potassium(250 MG/6% DV PER SERVING)
Potassium has various roles in metabolism and body functions and is essential for the proper function of all cells, tissues and organs. According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, dietary potassium can help lower blood pressure by blunting the adverse effects of sodium on blood pressure.
Vitamin E(1 MG/6% DV PER SERVING)
An antioxidant that protects the body tissue from damage caused by unstable substances called free radicals. At lower levels, vitamin E may help protect the heart. Vitamin E also plays a role in healthy skin and hair.
Niacin(1.0 MG/6% DV PER SERVING)
Niacin is a form of vitamin B3, produced in the body from tryptophan and found in protein-containing food. Niacin is taken by mouth for high cholesterol. It is also used along with other treatments for circulation problems, migraine headache, Meniere's syndrome and other causes of dizziness, and to reduce the diarrhea associated with cholera.
Vitamin B6(0.1 MG/6% DV PER SERVING)
A water-soluble vitamin that helps the immune system produce antibodies. Antibodies are needed to fight many diseases. Vitamin B6 helps maintain normal nerve function and form red blood cells. The body uses it to help break down proteins. The more protein you eat, the more Vitamin B6 you need.
Vitamin C(4 MG/4% DV PER SERVING)
A water-soluble vitamin and antioxidant that is necessary for normal growth and development. Vitamin C is required for the growth and repair of tissues in all parts of your body. It is necessary to form collagen, an important protein used to make skin, scar tissue, tendons, ligaments, and blood vessels.
Magnesium(14 MG/4% DV PER SERVING)
An essential mineral for human nutrition. Helps produce energy and is important for muscle contraction and relaxation.
Manganese(0.1 MG/4% DV PER SERVING)
Manganese is a mineral that is considered an essential nutrient, because the body requires it to function properly. Manganese is used to help weak bones (osteoporosis), a type of “tired blood” (anemia), and symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
Thiamin(0.04 MG/4% DV PER SERVING)
Known as Vitamin B1, Thiamin plays a critical role in energy metabolism and, therefore, in the growth, development, and function of cells.
Iron(0.3 MG/2% DV PER SERVING)
Iron is an essential component of hemoglobin, an erythrocyte protein that transfers oxygen from the lungs to the tissues. As a component of myoglobin, a protein that provides oxygen to muscles, iron supports metabolism. Iron is also necessary for growth, development, normal cellular functioning, and synthesis of some hormones and connective tissue.
Carotenoids Lutein + Zeaxanthin(136 MCG PER SERVING)
Lutein and zeaxanthin are plant pigments found in the macula of the eye. Some research suggests lutein may help maintain healthy eyesight as we age. Lutein is a carotenoid that may be associated with a lower risk of eye diseases, such as cataracts and macular degeneration, and may help maintain the health of skin. Avocados contain some of the highest levels of lutein and zeaxanthin per serving of any fruit or vegetable.