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Versatile, filling, nutritious, and delicious. Yep, I´m talking about avocados. Here are some facts about avocado.

  1. Avocados are believed to have originated around 10,000 years ago in the tropical climates of Mexico, Guatemala, and the West Indies.
  2. Avocados were used as tributes from townsfolk to local royalty in Mesoamerica 7,000 years ago.
  3. Spanish explorers arriving in Mexico during the 16th century survived on avocados and were the first Europeans to consume them. As a result of the Spanish Conquest, avocados spread to South America and Central America.
  4. Avocado comes from the Spanish word “aguacate,” which came from the Aztec word “ahuacatl” which means testicle. Mostly likely because they grow in pairs.
  5. In the summer of 2017, more than 3,000,000 photos of avocado toast were uploaded to Instagram every day.
  6. Not only does avocado do wonders for your insides, it’s also great as a facial mask

5 Health Benefits of Avocados

Improve Digestion

Despite its creamy texture, an avocado is actually high in fiber.

Getting enough fiber in your diet is essential for the health of the digestive system because it helps promote the growth of healthy bacteria.

A study with 163 adults considered overweight found that people who consumed 175 grams (men) or 140 grams (women) of avocado daily for 12 weeks had lower fecal bile acid concentrations and increased bacterial diversity compared to a control group.

Greater bile acid concentrations induce intestinal inflammation and are related to the growth of microbes associated with negative health outcomes like colon cancer. 

Lower Cholesterol

Avocado is a high-fat food. But they don’t just contain any fat… the majority of the fat in avocado is oleic acid. This is a monounsaturated fatty acid. Oleic acid has been linked to reduced inflammation. Avocados may help protect against heart disease and diabetes.

Avocados can:

  • Reduce total cholesterol levels significantly.
  • Reduce blood triglycerides by up to 20%.
  • Lower LDL cholesterol by up to 22%.
  • Increase HDL (the “good”) cholesterol by up to 11%.

Osteoporosis Prevention

Half an avocado provides approximately 18% of the daily value of vitamin K.

This nutrient is often overlooked but is essential for bone health. Taking in enough vitamin K can support bone health by increasing calcium absorption and reducing the urinary excretion of calcium.

Avocado also contains:

  • Vitamin C, a potent antioxidant that’s crucial for the production of collagen (a protein that maintains – among other things – healthy bones and cartilage).
  • Boron, a trace mineral involved in bone metabolism and Vitamin D activity that reduces the amount of urinary calcium and magnesium excretion.

Manages Weight

Including avocados in your diet could help you naturally eat fewer calories and have an easier time sticking to a healthy diet. Adding avocados to meals makes people more satiated and reduces the desire to eat for many hours, compared to a similar meal without avocados. 

Research shows that following a dietary pattern rich in fibrous foods, like fruits and vegetables, may help support weight loss. Plus, people who eat more fiber tend to maintain healthier body weights compared to those who follow lower fiber diets.

In a study that included 345 people, it was found that fiber intake was the most influential predictor of body weight, independent of calorie and macronutrient intake.

Plus, a number of studies have associated avocado intake with weight loss, improved satiety, and decreased abdominal fat.

 

Antimicrobial Action

Avocados contain substances that have antimicrobial activity, particularly against Escherichia coli, a leading cause of food poisoning.

Also,  research shows that avocado seed extracts can help defend the body against both Streptococcus agalactiae and Staphylococcus aureus infections, for example.

There are plenty of reasons to love this oval-shaped fruit. But there’s much more to avocados that go beyond smashing them on toasted bread. Get the recipes and enjoy!

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