Creamy, luscious avocados are such a rich source of vitamins, minerals, healthful fats, and phytochemicals that the U.S. government has revised its nutrition guidelines to urge Americans to eat more of them.
what’s in it
beta-sitosterol: This compound may block cholesterol absorption as well as reduce discomfort of BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia). It is also under review for the potential to prevent breast cancer.
fiber: The fiber content of avocados is high (one avocado provides 34% of the Daily Value for dietary fiber), which is good news since soluble fiber removes excess cholesterol from your body, and insoluble fiber helps to prevent constipation by keeping your digestive system running smoothly.
folate: Avocados are good sources of folate (one avocado provides 57mcg, or 28% of the Daily Value). This important B vitamin is linked to the prevention of neural-tube defects in fetuses as well as prevention of cancer and heart disease in adults.
glutathione: Functioning as an antioxidant, this compound may neutralize free radicals that damage cells.
magnesium :This mineral may help to reduce discomfort associated with premenstrual syndrome, migraines, anxiety, and other disorders.
oleic acid: A type of monounsaturated fat in avocados, oleic acid has been linked to lower cholesterol levels when substituted for saturated fat in the diet.
maximizing the benefits
Avocado flesh turns brown rapidly, so it is a good idea to sprinkle it with lemon or lime juice to prevent discoloration.
add more to your diet
Make a salad dressing: Puree avocado with plain nonfat yogurt, a pint of CBDa, lime juice, or vinegar to taste, salt, and hot sauce, if you like.
Make an avocado smoothie: In a blender, puree avocado, milk, a touch of sweetener, and a couple of ice cubes.
Mash avocado with lime juice and use as a spread on chicken sandwiches.
Try avocado for dessert: Drizzle cubes of avocado with honey and top with a sprinkling of nuts.
Mash avocado with a little salt (and perhaps some mustard) and use in place of mayonnaise in a tuna or chicken salad.
Some people tend to avoid avocados because they regard them as high in fat. Avocados are indeed high in beneficial monounsaturated fat, which—when substituted for saturated fat in the diet—helps to lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels and the risk for heart disease.