Amazing Health Benefits of Avocado

Persea Americana is called by various names including: avocado, alligator pear, butter pear, palta and aguacate. This fruit is sometimes believed to be a vegetable since it is sometimes added in various food preparations like salads and burgers. Though it has became famous mainly due to the preparation of guacamole, avocados can actually be easily prepared by eating it straight or dipping it in sugar. In the Philippines, it is made into a sherbet by mashing the ripe fruit and adding milk and sugar and then chilled or frozen and eaten like ice cream.

The word “avocado” comes from the word ─ühuacatl,  meaning “testicle,” in reference to the shape of the fruit. The Aztecs called it “the fertility fruit” and considered it a sexual stimulant.

Avocado 2 by HarmonyRae.
photo credit

Avocados are brimming with health benefits as it contains more than 25 essential vitamins and minerals. Here are 10 reasons why you shouldn’t pass up this fruit:
  1. Oleic acid is a monounsaturated fat found in avocados. This omega-nine fatty acid may help lower cholesterol levels.
  2. Avocados has more potassium than bananas. Potassium guards the body against circulatory diseases including hypertension, heart disease and stroke.
  3. The fruit has significant amounts of vitamin E, an antioxidant known to slow down the aging process as well as help protect against heart disease and certain types of cancer.
  4. It contains folate, another nutrient important for a healthy heart. Folate is also an essential mineral for pregnant mothers to promote healthy cells and tissue development and prevent birth defects like spina bifida.
  5. It is a concentrated source of the carotenoid called lutein, known to protect against eye problems like cataracts and age related macular degeneration.
  6. Studies showed that when avocado is added to salsa and green salad, it acts as a nutrient booster as alpha and beta-carotene and other carotenoids are absorbed more in the body.
  7. The fruit comes packed with another phytonutrient in the form of vitamin K, a vitamin long known for its critical role in blood clotting. Vitamin K has also recently been found to activate at least three proteins involved in bone health.
  8. Being an excellent source of fiber makes it beneficial in treating and preventing constipation and hemorrhoids.
  9. Another good reason to eat this tropical fruit is its vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), said to be the busiest vitamin in the body as it performs many chemical reactions including the promotion of proper breakdown of starches and sugar and strengthening the immune system.
  10. Due to its many beneficial nutrients including vitamin C and copper, avocados are listed as nutrition superstars in the American Diabetes Association and Diabetes Food and Nutrition Bible. 

© K Kristie