Avocado is an incredibly nutritious food with a high content of healthy fats and nutrients. Avocados are beneficial to your health because they boost your good HDL cholesterol. The fruit offers approximately 20 vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, including vitamins K, C, E, B, potassium, and lutein. Added to a salad or a slice of whole grain toast, or made it into a guacamole dip, avocados offer a delicious way to invigorate your health.
1.Protects the Eyes
Avocado contains the carotenoid and antioxidant lutein, which is a key player in eye health. Lutein is deposited into the retina and helps filter out harmful light and protect the eye from free radicals. It shields the cells from damage and encourages the regeneration of healthy eye cells. Eating foods with lutein protects your eyes from developing diseases such as macular degeneration and cataracts as you age. The healthy fat in avocado enhances the absorption of carotenoids, including beta-carotene, lycopene, and zeaxanthin, which all fight free-radical damage and protect healthy cells.
2. Lowers Blood Pressure
You may have heard that bananas are a good source of potassium. But did you know that avocado contains even more potassium than bananas? A 150g serving of avocado (1 cup of diced fruit) contains 727mg of potassium, which is 21 percent of the recommended daily intake (RDI) for most people. Potassium is an important mineral because it is responsible for regulating blood pressure. Studies show that consumption of potassium-rich foods causes a reduction in systolic and diastolic blood pressure. If you want to keep your blood pressure down, eat foods high in potassium, and avoid foods high in sodium
3. Lowers Cholesterol
You may be asking yourself what it means that avocado contains the “good kind of fat.” Avocados are rich in monounsaturated fatty acids, which raise HDL cholesterol levels and lower LDL. In a 1996 study in the Archives of Medical Research, 15 healthy and 30 hypercholesterolemic subjects were given an avocado-enriched diet. The hypercholesterolemic subjects experienced a 17 percent decrease in serum total cholesterol, a 22 percent reduction in LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, and an 11 percent increase in HDL cholesterol. Another study compared subjects on an avocado-rich diet to subjects on a restricted saturated-fat diet, and both groups experienced similar reductions in cholesterol and lipoprotein levels
4. Fights Cancer
Studies suggest that the phytochemicals present in avocado play a vital role in cancer prevention. Compounds with antioxidative properties can inhibit the growth of precancerous and cancerous cells. The fat, vitamin, and antioxidant content of avocado make it a helpful food to eat during chemotherapy.
A 1998 study in the Journal of Arthritis and Rheumatology concluded that supplementation with avocado or soybean unsaponifiables (ASU) in symptomatic osteoarthritis patients could significantly reduce pain. After a six-month trial period, NSAID consumption was lower, and patients reported a decrease in pain levels. Arthritis is chronic inflammation in the joints, and the antioxidants and monounsaturated fats in avocados have anti-inflammatory properties. Avocado may also reduce the symptoms of other chronic inflammatory diseases such as Crohn’s, fibromyalgia, Parkinson’s, and ulcerative colitis
6.Maintains a Healthy Heart
Avocado contains many heart-healthy nutrients, including healthy fats, fiber, potassium, and magnesium. It lowers blood pressure and cholesterol levels to help keep the bloodstream clean and healthy. These factors are important in maintaining cardiovascular health. The nutrients in avocado help reduce plaque build-up and keep blood vessels relaxed.
7. Nourishes Skin
Consuming avocado can help maintain skin health. This is due to the fruit’s rich supply of monounsaturated fats, vitamin C, and vitamin E. The good fats improve skin tone and maintain moisture. Vitamin E acts as an antioxidant, guarding against damage from sun exposure. Vitamin C is responsible for creating elastin and collagen, which keep the skin tight and firm, warding off wrinkles. This combination of nutrients provides the nourishment skin needs for proper skin cell regeneration, production of collagen and elastin, and a youthful glow
HOW TO MAKE AVOCADO SPREAD
Avocado Spread is so extremely easy to make, it only requires one step and three ingredients. Just add the flesh of an avocado to a mixing bowl, along with freshly squeezed lemon juice and salt. Mash the mixture together, stirring intermittently, until you’ve reached a nice, smooth consistency
THE EASIEST WAY TO CUT AN AVOCADO
To cut into an avocado, lay it on a cutting board, and have ready a sharp Chefs knife. Ready the blade of your knife so it is parallel with the cutting board, facing the stem of the avocado. Cut into the avocado starting at the stem end, and using a gentle sawing motion, run your knife from the stem end all the way to the pit.Then, leaving the knife in its place, carefully turn the avocado until it has made a full circle.Pull apart the avocado halves, and lay the pitted side on the cutting board, with the pit facing the ceiling. Carefully, tap the blade of your knife into the seed just firmly enough so that it locks into the seed.Twist the knife slightly, and using a dry dish towel, carefully pull the seed away from the blade.
WAYS TO MASH AN AVOCADO
There’s certainly more than one way to mash an avocado. Typically, I just grab a fork and mash away, but if you’d like to let technology do the work for you, you could use an immersion blender or a food processor. Either of these devices will make for a much smoother consistency, one almost closer to puree.
HOW TO SPREAD AVOCADO
The easiest way to spread Avocado Spread is to use a spoon to add a large dollop of it onto your toast (or whatever might be getting the benefit of avocado that day), and then, go for a butter knife or small offset spatula and spread it to the edges.
Avocados -Hass avocados are known for their soft, creamy texture and are the best choice when it comes to making Avocado Spread!
Lemon Juice -There’s not much that can add a fresh burst of acidity to a dish quite like a freshly squeezed lemon. If your avocados are on the larger side, you might find you need more lemon juice. If this is the case, feel free to add more lemon, but add just a little bit at a time so you don’t overpower your spread.
Salt | This recipe calls for salt. If you are using a standard-sized, table salt, cut the quantity of salt down to half a teaspoon.
HOW TO PICK A PERFECT AVOCADO
In order to snag the perfect avocado from the produce bin, you’ll need to rely mostly on your sense of touch. Run your fingers over the skin.
The avocado should be without any noticeable dips or crevices under the skin.When you apply gentle pressure to the avocado, it should feel somewhat firm, but give slightly to your touch.
HOW TO KNOW WHEN THEY’RE BAD
Avoid mushy avocados with a white powdery coating across the dark leathery skin. This is an indication that the inside is overly browned and no longer good.
NOT RIPE ENOUGH? DO THIS:
If you need your avocado to ripen in a hurry, add it to a paper bag along with a banana and roll it shut. The bananas will release a natural gas that hurries along the ripening process!
HOW TO STORE AVOCADO SPREAD
Contrary to what some might believe, the pit of the avocado does not keep it from browning. If the flesh of an avocado is exposed to air for an extended period of time, it is going to turn brown…pit intact or not.If you want your Avocado Spread to stay nice and green, plastic wrap is your best friend. Place the spread in a container and cover it directly with plastic wrap.
Note: The wrap should actually be laying on the spread, coming into direct contact with it. You can keep your Avocado Spread stored in the refrigerator this way for up to three days, but you should expect a decline in freshness after day 2.
Ref: The Anthony Kitchen