Raw avocados came onto my radar screen during our young son’s long illness after a serious mold exposure. He was struggling, among other things, with massive patches of eczema on the inner surface of both legs. It was necessary many mornings to unstick his jammies from his legs in the tub because of the seeping and weeping of the tissues. We also relied heavily on virgin coconut oil and fermented cod liver oil for internal healing (see post), but I digress.
Many nutritionists and raw foodists would say avocados are the Best Food In The Entire World, and I came to agree with them.
Interestingly, it is a fruit, not a vegetable – actually an oily berry!
Avocados: One of God’s Healthiest Foods
1.) Healthy, weight-reducing mono-unsaturated fat – Avocados have more fat than any other fruit, but don’t let that stop you from eating them It’s the most amazing, counter-intuitive kind of fat!
In one study, after just a week of adding avocado to their diet, the patients experienced a 22% decrease in bad cholesterol and triglyceride levels and an 11% increase in good cholesterol. The same study also found that people who ate avocados were more likely to have a lower body weight, BMI (body mass index), and waist circumference!
2.) Help for eczema: Long-term treatment with avocado and avocado oil helps relieve eczema. I’m not surprised, as avocado oil is rich in fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K, all of which help maintain healthy skin. I suggest applying it directly to any itchy, red or irritated areas. ~The Green Pharmacy: New Discoveries in Herbal Remedies, by James A. Duke, Ph.D.
3.) Prevent birth defects – Avocados are rich in folate, a B vitamin commonly known as folic acid. One cup of avocado provides about 23% of the recommended daily value of folate. The high amount of folate in avocado is essential in the prevention of birth defects, such as neural tube defect and spina bifida.
4.) They’re baby friendly – Avocados are the size of a baby in its mother’s womb at 16 weeks. They’re also a good snack to feed to babies young and old!
5.) Regulate the blood sugar levels – The monounsaturated (good) fats in avocados can reverse insulin resistance which help to regulate blood sugar levels. Avocados also contain soluble fiber which keeps a steady blood sugar level.
6.) Vitamins and minerals – Avocados are full of potassium (way more than bananas) and magnesium, two nutrients known to help reduce blood pressure. In addition, avocados are rich in Vitamins A, B9, B6, B5,C, K, and E along with copper, a non-toxic form of iron, and phosphorus.
7.) Dietary fiber -There are 10 grams of fiber in a medium-sized avocado, with 75 percent of that fiber being insoluble (the one that speeds up the digesting process), and the other 25 percent being soluble (responsible for making you feel “full”).
8.) Absorption –One study showed that when avocado is added to salad, the absorption of beta-carotene from carrots increased 13.6 times, and the absorption of alpha-carotene from lettuce increased 4.3 times compared to the same salad eaten without avocado. The reason is because the mono-saturated fat in an avocado helps the body absorb fat-soluble carotenoid phyto-nutrients better.
9.) Maintain a healthy heart – Avocado contains vitamin B6 and folic acid, which help regulate homocysteine levels. High level of homocysteine is associated with an increased risk of heart disease. Avocado also contains vitamin E and glutathione which help in maintaining a healthy heart.
10.) Cancer-preventing – The oleic acid in avocado is also effective in preventing breast cancer. Early research has also found that the fruit could play a role in inhibiting the growth of prostate cancer cells.
11.) Anti-aging properties – The glutathione in avocado boosts the immune system and slows aging processes. Research in Mexico has shown that the oil in avocados has high antioxidant levels to combat destructive rogue oxygen molecules that oxidize and age cell membranes, proteins, and DNA.
12.) Avocados are a cheap alternative for Botox and serve as a super effective moisturizer, sunburn treatment, and serious wrinkle remover. Mix raw honey, yogurt, and an avocado together, and then slather it on your face. We certainly can afford to spend $1 on a Haas avocado to whip up an antioxidant and amino acid-rich mask that will target fine lines, crow’s feet, and other signs of aging!
13.) Protein – an average avocado contains around 4 grams of protein, which is much more than most other fruits. And it’s good-quality protein to boot. While they don’t contain every single amino acid required in the body’s protein-building process, they do have all 18 of the important ones, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. Plus, all of that protein is available for the body to use, while some of the protein you might get from meat sources is not.
14.) Promote eye health – Avocado is an excellent source of carotenoid lutein, which known to help protect against age-related macular degeneration and cataracts.
15.) If you’re trying to eat healthier, you can swap equal amounts of avocado for butter in most recipes for baked goods. Chocolate-chip cookies and banana bread can taste delicious when baked with avocado. Check out these beautiful avocado brownies from “How Sweet Eats.” There’s even avocado in the frosting!
17.) Anti-inflammatory properties – Phytonutrient compound found in avocados, such as polyphenols and flavonoids have been found to have anti-inflammatory properties, thereby reducing the risk of inflammatory and degenerative disorders.
18.) They have natural packaging – You can’t eat the thick skin, but it shields the green goodness inside, making avocados perfect for travel. Eat when they yield a bit when gently squeezed.
19.) It makes an amazing and healthy ice cream if you use raw honey or maple syrup instead of refined sugar! Thank you, Medy, for introducing it to us years ago!
So, do you agree that the ingeniously packaged, no-cook, buttery, versatile green fruit called ‘avocado’ is one of the best foods in the world?
Do you have any special avocado recipes that you can share here? Kindly share a link with us in the comments.
Thanks for reading!