Avocados could just be one of the most overlooked and underrated superfoods on the planet.
Even though they are often considered a vegetable or superfood, avocado is actually categorized as a fruit.
This little wrinkly and unappealing food, is loaded with health benefits that you simply can’t afford to miss out on.
And the taste?
While you may not prefer a plain avocado, when you catch a glimpse of the delicious recipes we have in store for you, you’ll definitely want to start adding this amazing fruit to your diet on a weekly basis.
Heck, even a little hot sauce, Himalayan sea salt, and pepper can bring out its true flavors.
Before we dive into the health benefits of avocados and just how they may help you shed unwanted body fat, let’s look at their history and give you some fun facts.
HISTORY OF AVOCADOS
The avocado originally came from South Central Mexico and is the only fruit to have an unusually high amount of friendly fat content. And it’s virtually sugar free, so it has a much different nutrient profile than all the other fruits.
There is evidence of avocado’s dating back as far as 10,000 years in Mexico. Slowly its use began to spread moving to Europe and then later on, into the United States and North America.
A typical serving size of 1/3 of a medium avocado has 80 calories, 8 grams of healthy fats, and only 4 grams of carbohydrates, of which 3 of those grams are fiber, 1 gram of protein, and virtually zero sugars.
FUN & INTERESTING UNKNOWN FACTS
Let’s look at some fun and interesting facts about the avocado. Bet you didn’t know most of these!
• Avocados almost went extinct at one point, but fortunately, giant ground sloths started eating them and saved them from dying off.
• Chipotle uses about 97,000 pounds of avocados per day amongst its many
• Avocados used to be called ‘alligator pears’.
• There are certain species that should not eat avocados as they are incredibly poisonous to their body. This includes birds, cats, dogs, and rabbits.
• Americans collectively consume around 69 million pounds of avocados on Super Bowl Sunday. Holy smokes, that is a lot of guacamole!
• Wondering where it got its name? This is kind of strange; the word avocado is actually the Aztec word for testicle named for its oval shape and reputation as an aphrodisiac.
• Avocado trees do not self-pollinate, meaning they need to have another avocado tree close by to bear fruit.
Now that you’re up on your avocado trivia, let’s get into the long list of their amazing health benefits.
4 ANTI-AGING HEALTH BENEFITS OF EATING MORE AVOCADOS
Just about everyone can benefit from eating avocados. Young or old, male or female, fit or unfit, avocados should be at the top of your weekly grocery list.
Anti-Aging Benefit #1: Rich In Dietary Fiber
First, avocados are loaded with dietary fiber, making them great for stabilizing blood glucose levels and warding off diabetes. Since fluctuating blood sugar level is the hallmark trait of diabetes, the better you can keep your levels under control, the less risk you’ll have of this condition.
They are also a perfect way to help manage your symptoms if you’re currently suffering from diabetes already.
In addition to blood sugar benefits, their high fiber content is also great for helping lower your risk for heart disease. The fiber found in avocados will help to reduce levels of bad cholesterol in the body and raise the level of good cholesterol, keeping your ticker working optimally.
One study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association noted that one avocado per day as part of a moderate-fat, cholesterol-lowering diet lowers bad cholesterol levels, particularly small, dense LDL.
Anti-Aging Benefit #2: Healthy Skin, Hair, and Nails
Another added benefit of avocados is that they can actually help you look younger.
In addition to helping you lose unwanted body fat, which we’ll get to in a second, avocados are loaded with vitamin E, which is a fat soluble vitamin that is critical for keeping your skin, hair, and nails looking their best.
If you find that your skin and hair looks dull and lackluster you may be lacking this fat soluble vitamin and avocados can help you fill in the missing gap.
You can even use them topically by preparing a hair or face mask as well.
The vitamin E will help to promote better circulation to the scalp, which will then help to increase hair follicle health.
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Anti-Aging Benefit #3: Antioxidant Benefits
Vitamin E serves as a powerful antioxidant in the body, combating free radical damage and helping you side-step today’s most deadly diseases.
The more free radical damage your body encounters on a day to day basis from stress, poor dietary habits, and environmental factors, the faster your body begins to break down. Oxidation, which is the end result of free radicals is like rust on a car.
It slowly eats away at your cells internally until things start to malfunction.
Research has suggested that vitamin E may help to reduce the risk of coronary artery disease, illustrating another one of its key health benefits.
Anti-Aging Benefit #4: Reduced Risk Of High Blood Pressure And Stroke
Finally, avocados may also help keep your blood pressure in check.
Most people today consume a diet that is loaded with table salt and other unhealthy versions of sodium and not high enough in potassium. Avocados can help you reverse this trend.
This fruit offers a generous dose of potassium and is very low in sodium, which is the key combination for lowering blood pressure.
Research published in the BMJ journal noted that those who have the highest intake of
unhealthy sodium in their diet plan are at the greatest risk for stroke, so by replacing some of your high sodium diet foods, such as processed cheese for example, with a healthier lower sodium source of fat like avocado, you can reduce your risk.
Ok, now that you are up to speed on the biggest health benefits of the avocado, let’s now talk about the fat burning benefits they have to offer.
4 DIFFERENT WAYS AVOCADOS CAN HELP YOU BURN UNWANTED FAT
If you’re reading this article, you obviously know by now that you’ll never get a flat, attractive belly without having a solid nutrition plan in place, and the avocado should be one of your go-to fat burning foods.
They have several metabolic benefits that can help you burn unwanted fat, but make sure you monitor your portion control carefully.
Due to the friendly fat content, which yields 9 calories per gram vs. 4 calories per gram for carbs and protein, eating a third to a half an avocado as part of your meal is plenty to get your fat burning engine revved up.
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Fat Burning Pathway #1: Insulin Control
Earlier we spoke about how avocados help to control your blood glucose levels. They are low in sugar, high in fiber, and offer a good source of healthy fats, which is pretty much a home-run hit for preventing a spike in blood glucose levels.
The more stabilized your blood glucose levels are, the less insulin the body needs to release accordingly. The less insulin released, the lower the risk there is of storing unwanted body fat.
And get this: when insulin is high and blood sugar is high, your body is basically in ‘nutrient storage’ mode. Insulin takes up the excess glucose from the blood and shuttles it away to the body fat stores—causing your fat cells to expand.
Keeping insulin levels under control is one of the quickest ways to prevent fat storage and keep the body in a fat burning environment.
Win-win for fat burning!
Fat Burning Pathway #2: Improved Satiety
Another great fat fighting benefit that avocados deliver is that they’re great for helping you control hunger and cravings. Simply adding 5-10 grams of dietary fat (found in a quarter of an avocado) to your meals will help that meal ‘stick to your ribs’ so to speak.
Most people find that meals that are completely devoid of fat and only contain carbohydrates and protein leave you wanting more in half an hour’s time. A little friendly fat added into the mix helps put the brakes on your hunger.
People who follow the Standard American Diet (SAD) that’s recommended all over the world (a low-fat diet) get hungry from lack of friendly fat intake so they cave and eat more than they should.
On top of this, research suggests that a lower carb diet in general can help to promote calorie reduction and weight loss results. A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine had subjects follow a reduced carbohydrate diet for a period of 14 days. The subjects consumed more calories when following their usual uncontrolled diet for seven days.
Fat Burning Pathway #3: Long Lasting Energy
Everybody wants more energy—right? I know I do!
Another way avocados can help you achieve your weight loss goals is by providing you with a stable source of energy. Because avocados are rich in dietary fats and fiber they break down slowly, causing a steady stream of sustained energy.
Furthermore, one whole avocado actually contains more potassium than a banana does. This mineral helps to play a part in regulating muscle contractions. So, if you’re on a lower carb diet and about to hit the gym, avocados may just be the perfect preworkout meal companion to your protein source.
Fat Burning Pathway #4: Protein Power
Avocados are also a decent source of protein—especially when compared to other fruits. Even though you only get four grams per fruit, when you contrast this to other fruits that are virtually protein-free, it’s definitely favorable.
Protein is essential for keeping your metabolism up, preserving lean muscle mass, and keeping hunger low.
I consider it mandatory to eat some sort of healthy fat while on a reduced calorie plan, and many people will find they feel less restricted eating a source of fat that contains a bit more volume such as avocados or nuts compared to oils. This isn’t to say you should avoid healthy oils altogether, as many oils do offer great health benefits… just keep in mind that friendly fat sources that provide more bulk (like avocados and small servings of raw nuts) will help keep you feeling full longer.
PROS OF AVOCADOS
• Are an easy to prepare food
• High in fiber
• Low in sugar content
• Great for stabilizing blood glucose levels
• Can help lower cholesterol levels and improve heart health
• Provide a stable source of energy
• Are highly versatile and can be used in a number of different recipes
• Are relatively cost effective
• Can be purchased year-round in most areas
CONS OF AVOCADOS
• Are higher in calories so portion control is key
• Don’t have a very long shelf life
• Many people don’t like the taste of them plain on their own
PRIME PICKINGS: HOW TO CHOOSE A GOOD AVOCADO
Curious how to choose a high quality, great tasting avocado?
Avocados are ripe when they feel heavy for their size and firm when you squeeze them a bit. If you squeeze on either end of the avocado it should yield a bit, but you don’t want them mushy or rock hard either. Color wise, the best tasting avocado’s will be dark in color.
If you go to the grocery store only to find all unripe avocados, you can quickly ripen one to serve at home
by simply putting it into a paper bag for 2-4 days.
You’ll see even faster results if you place them in the bag with a ripe banana or apple. This will speed up
the ripening process and allow you to consume it sooner.
For best tasting avocados, make sure you avoid placing them in the fridge until they are at their optimal ripened stage.
Once they are there, then they can be kept in your fridge for up to one week. Do keep in mind though that the longer the avocado is kept in the fridge, the greater the risk it starts losing some of its nutritional value however, such as vitamin C.
If you are going to place it in the fridge for storage, avoid cutting it all first. Place it in the fridge whole (or as a half if you are eating just half at a time) and then slice it right before use. This will help to prevent the flesh of the fruit from turning brown and possibly impacting the taste.
Place the avocado sealed in a plastic bag or in a Tupperware container. If you are really concerned about the presentation of your avocado, a little lemon juice drizzled on top can help prevent the browning that typically occurs.
THE BEST TIME TO EAT AVOCADOS
In terms of when to eat avocados, they are great when used on a reduced carb diet plan. You’ll probably find that you’ll eat more of them at this time as your overall dietary fat intake will be much higher than a the normal.
Because it’s ideal to avoid high fat meals right before or immediately following a workout period (unless you are using a very low carb approach in which case fat is your only option), try and serve your avocado during the other meals of the day that are not right around the workout period.
Too much fat at this time slows down digestion and can cause you to feel sluggish during exercise.
Also, eating them later in the day on a dinner salad can help you fight off nighttime cravings because they’ll keep you feeling full and satisfied.
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Finally, avocados are also a great option when you are looking to boost your calorie intake to build lean muscle mass because they are so calorie dense.
Ready to get sizzling in the kitchen? Avocados are so versatile you must make use of them today! Check out some of the delicious recipes below for a few ideas.
Mexican Tuna With Rice
‘Canned tuna…yuck!’ If that’s what you think, you have to try this recipe. It’ll change your views on this quick and easy canned fish.
- ½ cup salsa
- ½ cup canned tomatoes
- ½ cup brown rice, pre-cooked
- ½ cup water
- 1 finely diced carrot
- 1 sliced yellow pepper
- 2 cans of tuna
- juice of a lime
- ½ sliced avocado
1.) Combine the canned tomatoes, rice, water, carrot, and yellow pepper in a pan. Bring to a boil and then let simmer for 15 minutes or until rice is fluffy.
2.) Stir in the tuna and lime juice and then top with salsa and sliced avocado before serving.
Avocado Egg Scramble
Nothing beats eggs for starting your day and now eggs are even better. Upgraded with avocado, this is one breakfast worth getting out of bed for.
- 3 whole eggs
- ½ mashed avocado
- ¼ finely diced red pepper
- Himalayan sea salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ tsp. paprika
- ¼ cup spinach leaves
1.) Whisk together the eggs. Heat a skillet over medium heat with 1 Tbsp. coconut oil and then add eggs. Scramble the eggs until they’re about halfway cooked, add avocado, spinach leaves, and diced pepper. Salt and pepper to taste, adding paprika if desired.
2.) Continue scrambling until eggs are done and then serve.
Blueberry Kiwi Avocado Smoothie
Need a super smoothie on the run? This nutrient packed beverage will satisfy your need for satiety and taste. Down it and you won’t be hungry for hours.
- ½ cup blueberries
- 2 kiwis, peeled and sliced
- ¼ avocado, sliced
- ¾ cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1-2 ice cubes
1.) Place all ingredients in a blender and pulse blend until desired consistency is reached. Serve immediately.
Healthy Fish Tacos
Everyone loves a taco and you’ll love them even more when you try this twist on the original. With a balanced mix of proteins, carbs, and healthy fats, eating right has never been easier.
- 4 soft corn tortillas
- 12 oz. cod fish, cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 2 limes, halved
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- ¼ tsp. ground cumin
- ¼ tsp. chili powder
- ¼ cup diced cilantro
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup shredded head lettuce
- ¼ cup reduced fat mozzarella cheese
- ¼ cup low fat Greek yogurt
- ½ sliced avocado
- ¼ cup finely diced red peppers
- ¼ cup salsa
1.) Mix the salsa and red peppers and set aside. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the fish, garlic, limes, ground cumin and chili powder. Salt and pepper to taste. Cook the fish for 4-5 minutes or until just about done. Add in the cilantro and cook for a minute longer. Remove limes.
2.) Serve in the middle of the tortilla along with lettuce, cheese, yogurt, avocado, and red pepper-salsa mixture.
Chicken Kale Salad with Mandarins
Kale is often dubbed the superfood of the century as it’s incredibly loaded with nutrients and antioxidants. But if you’re like most, you may not quite have figured out a way to serve it that you actually enjoy. Give this recipe a try. I guarantee it’ll change your mind about kale.
- 6 oz. chicken breast, cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 5 cups kale, cut into pieces
- ½ avocado, finely diced
- 2 mandarin oranges, peeled and broken into segments
- 2 radishes, cut into thin strips
- 1/3 cup light feta cheese
- 2 tbsp. sunflower seeds
- 2 tbsp. lime juice
- 2 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 tsp. honey
- ½ tsp. Dijon mustard
- 1/8 tsp. chili powder
- salt and pepper to taste
1.) Mix the lime juice, 2 tbsp. olive oil, honey, Dijon mustard, chili powder, and salt and pepper to form dressing.
2.) Heat remaining 1 tbsp. olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and garlic, sautéing for 4-5 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink inside. Add in the kale and sauté for about 1 minute to let flavors blend and slightly soften kale. Transfer to a bowl.
3.) Add in the remaining ingredients and then drizzle dressing on top. Toss and serve.
Quick And Easy Guacamole Recipe
No recipe section for avocados would be completed without a delicious guacamole recipe. Serve this with baked corn tortillas, diced vegetables, or just alongside your main protein source.
- 4 medium avocado, pits removed and halved
- 1 lime
- 1/3 cup red onion, finely minced
- 2 cloves garlic, mashed
- 1 tbsp. chopped cilantro
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 Roma tomato, finely diced
- ½ finely diced red pepper
1.) Use a fork to mash the avocado. Next, stir in the onion, garlic, juice from the lime, cilantro, and salt and pepper. Gently stir in the tomatoes and red pepper. Serve.
So there you have it – a complete crash course on this amazing fruit called the avocado.
Don’t let the high fat content scare you off. You need friendly fats if you want to burn
body fat, avoid diseases, and live longer.
This fruit can easily be used as well as a swap for mayonnaise in some of your favorite
recipes so don’t be afraid to get creative.
Now that you’re an avocado expert make sure you take advantage of this newfound
Thanks for reading this and keep rockin’!
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