Know the Health Benefits of Avocados
Edited by Ermin, Eng, Lynn, VC
Avocados are native to Central America and Mexico. In the United States, some commercial companies produce avocados. After harvesting, they ripen commercially. As a matter of fact, the US is listed as one of the major producers of avocados worldwide. The fruits are also called alligator pears, because their shells are green-skinned just like an alligators. The shapes vary, depending on the place the fruit is grown. The shapes can be spherical, pear-shaped, or egg-shaped. The similar characteristics among the varieties of avocados is that they only have one huge seed. Avocados belong to the berry family, but avocados are larger than the other berry fruits.
Avocados are delicious, either eaten fresh and ripe or added to a recipe. In addition to the heavenly taste of the fruits, avocados have helpful benefits to the health. Many people have overlooked the benefits of avocados. They should know that alligator pears contribute a lot to the treatment and prevention of some severe diseases, like cancer. Some people call them super fruits, because of their amazing benefits. In this page, you will be able to know the health benefits of avocados:
Health Benefits of Avocados:
- 1Cancer. According to Dr. Nalini Chilkov, avocados are great fighting cancer fruits, because of its rich sources of nutrients - vitamins, fiber, minerals, and monounsaturated healthy fat. In addition to the nutrients, avocados also have phytochemicals and antioxidants, which are beneficial for treating any forms of cancer. The phytochemicals and antioxidants include the following:Advertisement
- Vitamin E. Synthetic vitamin E does not have an effect in preventing cancer formation. However, organic vitamin E that is mainly found in fruits, like in avocados, is a lot more effective in preventing any forms of cancer. A study showed that vitamin E daily intake can reduce the risk of breast cancer. This was studied by some researchers in The Nurse's Health Study. The researchers concluded that those who consumed the highest intake of vitamin E are more likely to reduce the risk of cancer formation. This is how important vitamin E is for everyone's health.
- Carotenoids. Zeaxanthin, alpha carotene, and beta carotene found in avocados can help inhibit and kill cancer cells in the prostate glands, head and neck, breast, and oral cancers.
- Lutein. Lutein in fruits and vegetables are potent phytochemicals in reducing the risk of breast cancer. Avocados have rich sources of lutein good for women who are prone to breast cancer.
- Glutathione. Avocados have glutathione phytochemicals that can detoxify the body and prevent the cells from oxidative stress. When you have high levels of glutathione, your liver can detoxify unwanted toxins in your body more than normal.
- Oleic acid. Avocados have rich sources of oleic acid, a healthy and friendly monounsaturated fat that can help lower high cholesterol and glucose levels. These can help you prevent getting cardiovascular diseases, high blood pressure, and even cancer.
- 2Neurological disorders. Neurological disorders refer to the nervous system, or simply the brain, that is greatly affected by genes or hereditary condition, age, trauma, drugs, etc. Bipolar disorder, Alzheimer's, and Parkinson's are among the examples of neurological diseases. Did you know that avocados can help prevent one from getting these disorders or worsening the conditions? According to the author of Change Your Brain, Change Your Life, Dr. Daniel G. Amen, the folate, vitamin E, and omega-3 fatty acids in avocados can help prevent cancer from forming or developing. In the early stages of a neurological disease, avocados can help prevent the cancer cells from spreading.Advertisement
- 3Pregnancy issues. Folic acid is an important nutrient for pregnant women. This can help them protect the fetus from birth defects or other related pregnancy issues. However, there is scientific evidence that synthetic folic acid can cause adverse effects. So, the researchers only suggest consuming folic acid found in fruits, mainly in avocados. The folic acid in avocados can help the fetus grow in the womb healthily.
- 4Cardiovascular diseases. As I mentioned above, avocados have phytochemicals that contribute to the prevention of cardiovascular diseases. This is the monounsaturated fat that helps lower high levels of cholesterol, to avoid stroke and other heart issues.
- 5Eyesight degeneration. One of the causes of eyesight degeneration is oxidative stress, cell impairment from too much oxygen. The lutein in avocados can help prevent you from getting eyesight degeneration, such as macular degeneration, cataracts, and poor vision.
- 6Type 2 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes cannot be prevented, and we all know that. However, diabetes type 2 can be prevented from developing and worsening by consuming nutrients from avocados. The monounsaturated fats or oleic acid can help regulate blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes. Consume avocados in moderation, as the fruits also contain calories - nutrients that are risk factors to diabetes.
- 7Aging. Almost all women are scared of aging. But, there's good news! The rich source of glutathione in avocados can help their skin rejuvenated, making them look younger.
- 8Digestive problems. Avocados have fiber and other nutrients that are helpful in restoring the normal function of digestive tract. Diarrhea, flatulence, and other digestive issues can be treated by eating avocados. The nutrients found in avocados can help reduce inflammation in the digestion and mucus linings of the small intestines.
- 9Anti-inflammatory diseases. The phytonutrients in avocados called flavonoids, vitamin C, and polyphenols are regarded as anti-inflammatory agents. These can help reduce the risk of inflammatory diseases, such as atherosclerosis, acne vulgaris, dermatitis, arthritis, hepatitis, etc.
- 10Osteoporosis. Avocados are good sources of vitamin K, a beneficial vitamin that can help metabolize calcium, support blood clotting, and strengthen the bones.
These are just a few of the health benefits of avocados. There are other nutrients in the fruits that contribute a lot to the prevention of some diseases: Potassium, manganese, vitamin B complex, vitamin C, iron, and many more. With the combinations of the active properties, mineral and vitamins, one will definitely get rid of possible diseases, by consuming substantial amount of avocados daily.
How to Make an Avocado Shake or Smoothie
Apart from eating fresh avocados, you can also try making an avocado smoothie. You can add this to your daily meal or snack, to get the right amount of nutrients. Below are three recipes that you may want to follow. This is easy to make!
Traditional Smoothie Avocado
- 1Ingredients: [This serves one person only.]Advertisement
- 1 ripe avocado
- 1 cup of skimmed milk
- 6 ice cubes
- 3 tbsp. of sweetened condensed milk
- Peel the avocado.
- Add all ingredients into a blender and blend them thoroughly.
- Garnish with a sprig of any mint to the blender.
- Refrigerate to chill more (optional).
- Fill the glass with the smoothie and serve.
Delicious avocado fruit shake
- 1/2 cup of strawberries
- 6 ice cubes
- 1/3 cup of Greek yogurt
- 1/3 cup of skimmed milk
- 1/2 ripe avocado
- 1 banana
- Peel the avocado.
- Place all ingredients, except strawberry, into a blender and puree them.
- Add fresh strawberries into the smoothie, after blending.
- Blend them again.
- Fill your glass with the puree and drink.
How to Make Homemade Avocado Juice
Here is another juicy and healthy drink using avocados, written especially for you. Below is an instruction on how to make a homemade avocado juice:
- 1 avocado
- 1 cup of ice cubes
- 1 cup of cool water
- 1 cup of milk of any kind
- 1 wafer stick of any kind
- 4 tbsp. of sugar
- 1 tbsp. of chocolate sprinkles
- Peel the avocado, as usual.
- Slice them into small pieces and add them into a blender.
- Add the milk, ice, sugar, and water into the blender.
- Blend the ingredients smoothly for 30 seconds.
- Fill the glass with the juice and add the wafer stick and chocolate sprinkles on top.
- Serve and enjoy your new avocado juice!
Tips & Warnings
- Take note that avocados are rich sources of calories. Eat them in a moderate amount, or as advised by your doctor.
- There is no enough information about whether avocados are safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women or not. However, you should still stay on the safe side by not consuming too many avocados, and by asking a doctor's advice.
- Generally, avocados are safe to eat.
- Those who are allergic to latex can also be allergic to avocados, so be careful if you have such an allergy.