My love affair with the avocado of course, started with guacamole, but that was just the beginning. If I don’t eat at least 1/4 of an avocado a day, I feel it. I need my phix of this glorious superfood. Why?
The avocado has crazy nutritional benefits, ranging from cholesterol management and high fiber content to helping with arthritis issues. Here’s why you need to start adding them in to your diet now:
- Monounsaturated fat: Yup, that’s the “good” fat. It can improve cholesterol levels, decrease the risk of heart disease and can speed up the metabolism.
- Vitamin E: Vitamin E packs an antioxidant punch, protecting body tissue from damage by kicking out free radicals. It’s also vital to red blood cell formation— another plus, since these cells are responsible for oxygen circulation and waste elimination.
- Vitamin B6: Vitamin B6 assists with the body’s formation of glycogen (back-up fuel that’s stored in the liver and muscles) and promotes healthy glowing skin (hence why so many lotions lately claim to be made from with avocado.
- Carotenoids: When eaten together, avocados may increase the body’s absorption of carotenoids from other healthy foods like fruits and vegetables. Carotenoids are high in Vitamin A and have been linked to reducing cancer, heart disease, and eye degeneration.
How to Pick it: This could be most daunting one. But a good rule of thumb is to buy the fruit when it’s firm, and let it ripen for a few days before eating. Squeeze it lightly. It should still be somewhat firm, but soft and the tiny little stem should wiggle. Sometimes it is the luck of the draw. I could be anticipating the perfect creamy avocado with a soft dark exterior only to cut into the centre to reveal a woody fibrous fruit. Ugh, I hate that. In that case I would swear it on my face instead of over my salad.
How to Eat: Really how not to. Thanks to its versatility, avocado can easily be used in a sandwich, as a dip or salsa, in chilled soup, in a salad, in sushi, with an omelet. Or just scoop it right out of its skin and squeeze lemon on it! And even though we know that avocado can be so much more, don’t forget the guacamole. I am a purest when it comes to my avo. I don’t like it in my smoothies. But I love this unusual twist. This is an amazing avo treat…You will never want the sugar and fat laden one again. Careful, it is addicting.
Watch it: Just keep in mind that there can be too much of a good thing. Due to the fruit’s high-fat content (roughly 85% of the avocado’s calories come from fat), no more than half a day.