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10 Health Benefits of Avocados: The Super Food

Angela, due to food sensitivities, has a great appreciation for food and its effect on the body. She strives to learn about healthy living.

Ten reasons to incorporate avocados into your diet.

Ten reasons to incorporate avocados into your diet.

Vitamins in Avocados

Avocados, which originated in Mexico, are an extremely healthy fruit to eat. Although a little bland by itself, avocados become a very delicious healthy treat when made into guacamole. They are also used as a filler in sushi or a sandwich spread. Unlike most fruits high in carbohydrates, they are low in calories. This fruit is high in good healthy fat and 20 times higher in caloric value. It is, for this reason, it makes a great meat substitute.

Although there are many different kinds of avocados, the most commonly eaten are the Hass Avocados, which have a bumpy green skin reminiscent of the surface of an alligator. They have a lot of vitamins. According to HealthLine.com, half of an avocado contains:

  • 26% of the RDA of Vitamin K
  • 20% of the RDA of Folate
  • 17% of the RDA of Vitamin C
  • 14% of the RDA of Potassium
  • 14 % of the RDA of Vitamin B5
  • 13 % of the RDA of Vitamin B6
  • 10% of the RDA of Vitamin E
  • Smaller amounts of Magnesium, Manganese, Copper, Iron, Zinc, Phosphorous, Vitamin A, B1 (Thiamine), B2 (Riboflavin), and B3 (Niacin).

Due to so many vitamins, there are many health benefits, including these ten!

10 Benefits of Eating Avocados

  1. Promotes Eye Health
  2. Great for Heart and Brain Health
  3. Reduces Blood Pressure
  4. Better Digestion
  5. Reduces Risk of Cancer
  6. Helps Brain and Decreases Risk of Depression and Anxiety
  7. Reduces Risk of Diabetes
  8. Reduces Inflammation
  9. Helps Prevent Osteoporosis
  10. Great for Pregnant Women and the Unborn Baby

1. Promotes Eye Health

Eyes are very sensitive organs and need certain nutrients to function well. Fortunately, avocados contain two such nutrients. First, they provide more carotenoid lutein than any other fruit. Lutein reduces the risk of macular degeneration as well as cataracts and promotes overall eye health. It also contains zeaxanthin, which, along with lutein, helps protect the eye from harmful light waves. By making sure your food is rich in these two nutrients, you are assuring your eyes and your vision will age well along with you.

2. Great for Heart and Brain Health

This tasty fruit is full of monounsaturated fat, which is a healthy fat. Monounsaturated fats help balance your cholesterol levels. They not only increase your good cholesterol levels but keep your harmful cholesterol levels within the normal range. Eating one avocado will provide you with 30 percent of your daily need for this healthy fat. Keeping your cholesterol down will prevent your arteries from being clogged and help prevent strokes, heart attacks, and pulmonary embolisms.

Another way this green fruit helps cholesterol levels is by providing 25 milligrams of beta-sitosterol, which is a natural plant sterol that helps balance cholesterol levels.

Avocados are rich in Vitamin E and folate, which protect your heart from disease, clots, and blockages. With heart disease being one of the world's worst killers, we need to make sure we take good care of our hearts.

3. Reduces Blood Pressure

Due to the high levels of potassium found in avocados, eating this fruit regularly reduces blood pressure. An avocado has more potassium than a banana does and provides you with 14 percent of your daily need. By lowering blood pressure, you are less likely to have a heart attack, stroke, or pulmonary embolism. Lower blood pressure also helps protect your kidneys from damage.

4. Better Digestion

Researchers have found that your body absorbs nutrients better when the nutrients are eaten with avocados. This is because many nutrients are fat-soluble vitamins, which means they need fat to be adequately absorbed. Since this fruit is such a high source of healthy fats, it makes an ideal food to eat for better absorption of vitamins!

Don't be fooled by its creamy texture, but avocados have nearly 12-14 grams of fiber per fruit, which is 50 percent of the recommended daily amount needed. Fiber is essential for digestion because it helps slow digestion down, which assists in nutrient absorption and helps prevent diarrhea and constipation. Fiber also helps prevent spikes in blood pressure because of how slow your body metabolizes it. Due to helping food move along, toxins are more easily excreted out of the body through the bile and stool, which keeps the colon healthy, promotes good gut bacteria, and eliminates the likelihood of colon cancer.

5. Reduces Risk of Cancer

Due to the high levels of Vitamin E, many believe that avocados help prevent cancer and destroy cancerous cells in the mouth. The effects are best if eaten with selenium-rich food. Avocados are rich in folate. Folates protect the body from the stomach, pancreatic, colon, and cervical cancers.

6. Helps Brain and Decreases Risk of Depression and Anxiety

The brain needs high levels of vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids to function at its best. Fortunately, avocados contain both! These nutrients help proper blood flow, especially to the brain's pre-frontal cortex, which is the part of the brain that controls critical thinking and decision making.

Folate also reduces the risk of depression. The reason for this is because it prevents homocysteine from building up in the brain. Build-up interferes with the production of serotonin (regulates mood), dopamine (regulates sleep), and norepinephrine (regulates appetite).

7. Reduces Risk of Diabetes

Although it is a high-fat food, the fat is a healthy fat. When your body consumes fat, your brain will receive signals that you can slow down your appetite. Although bad fat can clog arteries, good fat will break down carbohydrates, which ultimately helps keep sugar levels stable. Keeping sugar levels stable could reduce the risk of diabetes and make already existing diabetes more comfortable to control.

8. Reduces Inflammation

Avocados also contain polyhydroxylated fatty alcohols, which is a potent and natural anti-inflammatory agent. By eating plenty of guacamole, you will reduce inflammation throughout your body. By reducing inflammation, such inflammatory diseases as arthritis, ulcerative colitis, asthma, Crohn's are more apt to go into remission. Vitamin E and Vitamin C are also anti-inflammatory agents. These antioxidants fight against the damage that chronic inflammation causes.

Oleic acid, which is a monosaturated fatty acid, is found in both avocados and olive oil. As stated before, it is a good fat that reduces inflammation and essential for the heart to beat

9. Helps Prevent Osteoporosis

Vitamin K is essential for overall bone health. If you eat half of an avocado, you get 25 percent of the daily recommended value. Vitamin K also helps increase the absorption of calcium, which only further adds to the aid it does towards the bones, which prevents such bone diseases as osteoporosis.

10. Great for Pregnant Women and the Unborn Baby

This food is excellent for pregnant women and their unborn babies. Not only does it contain all the nutrients listed above and has those added benefits on the baby, but it is also rich in the coveted folate, which any doctor will say is essential for proper brain development in the unborn baby. When you eat half of an avocado, you receive a quarter of the amount of folate your body needs in a day. Folate also helps prevent miscarriage, as well.

Although no superfood will serve all of a person's needs, some people will refer to the avocado as a superfood because of the numerous health benefits. It is critical, though, that your body gets various natural colors in its diet, as strawberries contain different nutrients than green beans, and green beans contain different nutrients than rice, etc. A diet rich in color (of the natural kind) will be rich in many needed nutrients.

Sources

  • 12 health benefits of avocado
    Avocados are seen on menus and in shops more than ever. So, why are they so popular? Read here about the multiple vitamins and other nutrients in an avocado, and find out 12 reasons why they are good for you. The list includes benefits for eyes, hear
  • 12 Proven Health Benefits of Avocado
    The avocado is an incredibly healthy food and loaded with important nutrients. Here are 12 health benefits of avocado, that are supported by science.

Works Cited

  • Writer, Staff. "10 Health Benefits of Avocado." Daily Natural Remedies. Accessed March 03, 2018. http://dailynaturalremedies.com/10-health-benefits-of-avocado/?utm_source=health benefits of avocado&utm_medium=avocado&utm_campaign=bing.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2018 Angela Michelle Schultz

Comments

Kitty Fields from Summerland on April 23, 2018:

Angela - I lurv avocados so much!!! Thanks for reminding me why I love them so! Lovely to meet you in Whistler and hope for our continued success!

RTalloni on March 22, 2018:

This post on avocados provides more info than I've read in other articles on the fruit. Using good food as medicine is so important to good health.

Angela Michelle Schultz (author) from United States on March 20, 2018:

They are my absolute favorite! My youngest daughter loves them too!

Dianna Mendez on March 19, 2018:

So much benefit from this fruit and I'm so glad I eat them often.

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