Avocados

Considered to be one of the healthiest, most nutrient rich foods on the planet. Avocados contain more than 25 important nutrients including magnesium, iron, copper, vitamins A, B, C, E, K, and two to three times the potassium as a banana.

Why Avocados Are Healthy

Nutrition benifits

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Avocados

Avocados

Called the alligator pear by some, humans have been blessed by the health benefits of avocados for thousands of years. The avocado seems to have had its origin in Mexico and Central America.  The name of the avocado supposedly came from the ancient Aztec word ‘ahuacatl,’ which meant ‘testicle’ because of the interesting shape.

Avocados and Fat

Once, (until recently) avoided because of the high fat content, the avocado is presently very popular even with dieters now that most of those concerned with weight issues and calories understand that the monounsaturated fat in them is the kind of fat that not only doesn’t go to your hips but is good for joints and healthy brain function.

Considered by many to be one of the healthiest, most nutrient rich foods on the planet avocados contain more than 25 important nutrients including magnesium, iron, copper, vitamins A, B, C, E, K, and two to three times the potassium as a banana.  Avocados are also rich in fiber, important phytochemicals, and protein.

Why Eat Avocados

 Avocados for Optimal Wellness

Avocados Health Benefits

It wouldn’t be reasonable to expect that an illness would magically go away simply by eating avocados or any other healthy nutritious food. Nutrition science has proven however that avocados are worth incorporating into our diets for optimal wellness.

The list of health issues that avocado consumption helps with is long and growing, (as research is ongoing and turning up new findings constantly).

Avocados and Joint health

I mentioned joint health above because besides the joint lubricating that avocados do, they are also known for the anti-inflammatory combination of omega 3 fatty acids and antioxidants.  Rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis are helped by intake of these nutrients to relieve inflammation and pain symptoms.

Other active phytonutrients in avocados like flavonoids and polyphenols have a compounding effect on arthritic joints and serve to keep the disease at bay.

Avocados and Heart Health

Avocados

Another of the benefits is in the wonderful source of glutathione, (considered to be a major player in the fight against heart disease).   Along with glutathione, avocados are packed with folate, vitamin E, and the monounsaturated fats that lower LDL cholesterol.  Beta-sitosterol from avocados has been shown to lower LDL, and raise HDL, (the good cholesterol) and lower triglyceride levels.

The significant amount of potassium found in avocados further improves heart health by helping to regulate blood pressure and preventing strokes.

Avocados and Blood Sugar

Avocados include large amount of soluble fiber that keeps blood sugar steady. The monounsaturated fat that everyone was initially concerned about is instrumental in regulating blood sugar levels and reversing insulin resistance.

Avocados and Cancer Protection

Scientific studies in avocados have proven that eating avocados can stop and/or prevent the growth of some cancers like prostate and breast cancer. Avocados are so rich in nutrients and free-radical fighting antioxidants; it’s no wonder that they are gaining so much notoriety in the health and nutrition fields.

The cornucopia of phytochemicals in avocados like glutathione, lutein and beta-setosterol show powerful results against disease and the ravages that our western diets and lifestyles are creating.

Avocados and Aging

Avocados

The free radical issue is rearing its head at every turn when we consider the toxic world we live in.  From pesticides, fertilizers, smoke emissions, chemical waste, and overuse of antibiotics, the toxicity of our environment has effected not only how we live but how we age.

When our bodies are trying to handle the toxic load that we ingest from eating, breathing, and drinking our organs that are designed to filter these elements are overwhelmed.  The toxins that escape the filters are enrobed in fat cells and stored, (usually around the belly).  These toxic particles are called free radicals.  Free radicals act somewhat like an acid to our cells.  They eat holes through cell walls and damage what is inside of them.

Many of these cells are visibly changed and manifest what we know as signs of aging; Our skin loses collagen and gets thinner and dehydrated.  Our hair loses moisture, falls out, and turns grey.

The shape of our bones are affected by gravity and loss of density so we lose height.  Our posture changes from straight and upright to slumped over.Loss of muscle tissue and muscle tone make us physically less able to do things that were so easy at a younger age, and neurological reaction times are slowed, (sometimes to dangerous levels like when driving).

Sometimes cancers are formed or an organ is damaged as these toxins damage cells and diseases become the end product. The antioxidants in avocados, along with the glutathione, fortify the immune system, reinforce the nervous system, and slow down the process of aging.

Avocados and Healthy Eyes

Macular degeneration, cataracts, and retinal inflammation, (a major cause of floaters), are age related also.  The powerful antioxidants and carotenoid lutein in avocados protect against these problems.

Avocados and Weight Concerns

Health Benefits of Avocados

It is true that avocados contain twice the calories of other fruit even though avocados don’t contain the sugar that other fruits do.  However, the bio-availability of the avocado nutrition  makes an equitable and valuable trade off.  What this means is that the nutrient rich avocado also helps our bodies absorb more of the nutrients that we consume from other foods.

The monounsaturated fats in avocado don’t get stored the way that saturated fats do from processed foods that are calorie-dense and loaded with sugar.

Avocados and Skin

The plant steroids, (sterolins), in avocado are wonderful moisturizers and softeners for the skin.  One of the other  benefits of avocados is in the nutrient rich penetrating oil from cold pressed avocados. Using the oil shows marked improvement for sun damaged, dehydrated skin and that has the ability to regenerate collagen as well.  (Collagen loss is another gift of age and climate damage that we usually just have to live with).

Those suffering the itching and dryness of eczema and psoriasis can feel some relief from avocado oil loaded with essential fatty acids, (unsaturated of course), potassium, lecithin, and other regenerating vitamins.

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Avocados and Birth Defects

In today’s toxic world there are many causes of birth defects such as spina bifida and anencephaly, (lack of complete brain formation), that are being studied.  One of the commonalities in many birth defect cases is a folate deficit.  Folate is a B vitamin called folic acid. Folic acid is available in many unprocessed whole plant foods but is particularly heavy in avocado.  One cup of avocado yields close to a quarter of the recommended daily intake of folic acid.