10 Life-Changing Avocado Facts
Avocados are a great addition to your diet, packed with fiber, essential fatty acids, potassium, vitamin E and B vitamins. At 160 calories per 100 gram serving, it makes an excellent nutritional source that can be eaten in a variety of fun and creative ways. It can be eaten plain, or lightly sprinkled with a squeeze of lemon juice, or as a great spread for toast and sandwiches. Avocados contain essential nutrients and have a number of uses in recipes. Learning some avocado facts can be a great way to understand how to reap the health benefits of this useful fruit.
Believe it or not, avocados are a fruit, not a vegetable. Currently California comes in second as the world’s largest producer of avocados, so they are easily found in supermarkets across the US.
About three quarters of the fat in avocados is composed of unsaturated fats. This kind of fat is much healthier than foods high in saturated fats. In some dieting circles, fat content is seen as extremely unhealthy, to be avoided at all costs. However, the fact is that we actually require fats in our diet. It is essential for our bodies to function and create hormones. So it’s not about avoiding all fats in your diet. It’s about choosing the right fats that help you survive and stay healthy.
Avocados are a great source of healthy fat, which are important for the maintenance of a healthy body and the production of hormones the body needs to function.
Top 10 Avocado Facts to Benefit Health
1. Avocados for the Immune System
Glutathione is a powerful antioxidant contained in avocados, which is very helpful for a maintaining a healthy immune system. This antioxidant increases the immune system’s ability to fight off harmful cells in the body. Avocado facts show that one serving of avocados contain slightly less glutathione than asparagus (the highest known glutathione concentration vegetables) and almost three times more glutathione than spinach. Absorption of glutathione is better when eating raw unprocessed avocados and accompanied with vitamin C.
2. Avocado Facts That Benefit the Liver
Another avocado fact is that they can reduce the effect of certain chemicals in the body and reduce the chance of any possible damage to the liver. Glutathione can help strengthen your liver’s toxin metabolism and boosts vitamin C function, which is especially helpful for sufferers of adrenal fatigue. Maintaining a healthy liver is vital to helping the body stay clean and reduce stress on the adrenals.
3. Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Avocado
Avocados have anti-inflammatory powers, which can help relieve symptoms of osteoarthritis. Packed with fatty acids and essential oils, these ingredients help to reduce inflammation in your body. Inflammation is a big stressor on your adrenal glands because they produce cortisol, an anti-inflammatory hormone.
4. Avocado Facts for Weight Loss and Metabolism
Avocados are a healthy choice when working to lose weight. Using avocados as a sandwich spread instead of margarine or butter is lower in overall calories. Eating avocados can also help reduce feelings of hunger and lessen your appetite, making it easier to consume less food. Avocados are high in good fats, which help to sustain level blood sugar for longer periods of time. For those with adrenal fatigue, the metabolism is often impaired, and hypoglycemia is very common. Try some avocados as a snack to help combat this.
5. Avocados Benefit Cholesterol
The oils contained in avocados, such as oleic acid and linoleic acid, can assist in reducing LDL as well as total cholesterol. Another compound contained with avocados known as beta-sitosterol also aids in reducing LDL levels. Because these oils can reduce levels of LDL, or “bad cholesterol”, they improve overall cholesterol levels. Heart disease is one of the most common causes of death in the world, so the importance of eating avocados to lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels cannot be understated.
6. Avocado for the Skin
When applied to the skin as a lotion, avocado has been shown to relieve symptoms of psoriasis and other skin conditions. The oils and essential vitamins contained within avocados are very nourishing to the skin.
7. Avocado to Prevent Cancer
Another avocado fact is that studies show many of the vitamins, minerals, oils, and phytochemicals it contains are helpful for stopping the growth of and even destroying cancer cells. Studies also show that people who consume high levels of the compounds within avocados had an overall lower risk for certain kinds of cancers.
8. Avocados for Eye Health
As we age, our eyes experience natural changes and a slow decline in health. However, a nutrient known as lutein, a carotenoid, is great for helping protect against this decline of health in the eyes and cataracts. Lutein is an important antioxidant that is essential for eye health, and studies have shown it to be of great effect in reducing the risk of cataracts. Avocados are the highest common fruit source of this nutrient.
9. Avocados for Diabetes
Another avocado fact is that they can help with maintaining blood glucose levels, due to their high levels of monounsaturated fats. Studies have shown that those with diets high in this type of fat have a better chance of improving their insulin sensitivity in comparison to those on diets high in carbohydrates with a low fat content.
10. Avocados for Improved Blood Pressure
Avocados have more potassium than bananas, about 35% more. Potassium is effective in controlling blood pressure levels by balancing the effect of salt, or sodium, on the body. It is important to keep salt and potassium levels in balance, because too much sodium in the body makes it difficult for the kidneys to excrete excess fluid from the blood. Too much fluid in the blood results in more overall pressure on the veins, and higher blood pressure.
Beneficial Avocado Facts
There are many avocado facts that are beneficial to health in addition to the ten listed here.
They have a wide effect on different parts of the body. It is rich in magnesium, which helps in maintaining the health of bones and reduce the risk of developing bone conditions later in life. The vitamin A content found in avocados, along with its high fiber content, promotes regular stools and prevents constipation and diarrhea.
Avocados are also known to have the highest protein content of any fruits. For those who love to exercise and want to gain some muscle, avocados contain nine of the most important amino acids, which are all required for protein synthesis and the building of strong and healthy muscle.
The rich, creamy texture of avocados make it an excellent nutritional addition to your diet. With a large variety of recipes readily available on our website and the internet, there is no shortage of methods to creatively add it your food. Avocados are best eaten when they are fresh and ripe. You can prevent avocados from browning by adding some lemon juice or putting in the fridge.
Avocado Facts for Adrenal Fatigue
Avocado can be very helpful for those with adrenal fatigue. Adrenal fatigue is the result of your adrenal glands not being able to keep up with the demands put on your body. This can give you chronic stress, make it easier for you to get infections, lead to a lack of energy, and produce unexplainable weight loss. The general feeling you will get from adrenal fatigue is a sense of being unwell. Your doctor may have trouble trying to figure out what it is, as many of the symptoms adrenal fatigue presents are also present in other conditions. The good news is, adrenal fatigue can be addressed naturally with changes in lifestyle and choices in food.
Adrenal fatigue has a four stage process. During the initial stage, the body is still able to make adequate hormones in response to stress on the body. As the stress continues, the body’s ability to produce hormones begins to slow down, leading to a feeling of tiredness. In the later stages of adrenal fatigue, the body requires the production of certain hormones to respond to these stressful influences on the body. Many hormones come from cholesterol and fat. That is why it is important to supplement the body with good fats, such as those contained in avocado, to help the production of these hormones in fighting off adrenal fatigue.
Adrenal fatigue sufferers are more than aware of the difficulties they face when the body is limited in its normal ability to fight off sickness. So it is important to make the distinction between a typical modern diet and one that is designed to support adrenal fatigue. Adding avocados into your diet as a healthy nutritional source of fat in the early stages of adrenal fatigue is only one part of the equation. It is also important to improve your diet as a whole by eating foods that are high in nutrition with healthy and organic ingredients, free of preservatives and chemicals, and low amounts of artificial sweeteners and sugar.
Avocados contain an important antioxidant known as glutathione, used by the liver to remove harmful chemicals or substances in the body. As well as glutathione, avocados are a great source of vitamin C and vitamin E, also antioxidants that remove free radicals from the body. These antioxidant found in avocados play an essential role in helping the body reduce inflammation and improve the liver detoxification pathway. When this happens, your body will be less stressed.
The liver is known to be responsible for removing all potentially harmful foreign substances or chemicals, from our environment or food, from the body. When the liver fails to remove these harmful substances, the body and many of its organs can become overloaded, and this may cause symptoms such as brain fog, aches, and pain. So it is important for adrenal fatigue sufferers to protect their livers by eating foods high in antioxidants, which can help remove chemicals and substances that can potentially harm the liver.
Avocado Facts and the NeuroEndoMetabolic Stress Response
In addition to helping out with adrenal fatigue, avocados are also great in helping regulate your NeuroEndoMetabolic (NEM) Stress Response. The NEM stress response is how the body as a whole, adrenals included, regulates stress. Each part of your body plays a role in this process.
Avocados can improve the function of the NEM stress response, and are particularly important for the hormonal response. The body’s hormonal response to stress is mostly taken care of by the adrenal glands, thyroids, and sex organs.
Certain organs, such as the adrenal glands and kidneys, are in charge of producing and releasing important hormones to fight off stress. One of the most important hormones that fights off stress is cortisol. When the body is unable to secrete as much of these hormones as it needs, it can find itself more affected by stress. This can lead to a negative hormonal response, which can have your body experiencing symptoms of fatigue, inability to exercise, infertility, hair-loss, dry skin, lower sex drive, and irregular menstrual cycles.
An avocado is an excellent source of unsaturated fats, which are an important building block for the body’s natural production of hormones. These hormones, like cortisol, are important in regulating stress as part of the NEM stress response, and play an important role in relieving adrenal fatigue.
Avocados contain compounds known as polyphenols and flavonoids, these compounds are great in reducing inflammation and so also reduce your risk of developing inflammatory conditions. In fact, avocados can also assist in the inflammatory aspect of the NEM stress complex.
One of the body’s natural responses to harmful toxins or chemicals is inflammation. The purpose of inflammation in the body is to eliminate dead tissue and remove the cause of cell injury. Our bodies react to stress with inflammation early on in the process. As inflammation continues chronically in the body, however, symptoms such as sensitivities to certain foods, a leaky gut, or pain in the muscles can develop. If the inflammation caused by stress continues and is not controlled well, sufferers may experience chronic colds, recurrent infections, and other unpleasant symptoms. The importance of eating avocados lies in their ability to reduce inflammation in the body and to help the body reduce symptoms of an inflammatory response to stress.
When making the decision to add avocados to your diet, the choice can be rather simple. Avocados can be a delicious and nutritious addition, with many benefits for health and the relief of adrenal fatigue.
Like in all things in life, it is best to consume avocado in moderation. Some more avocado facts to consider: too many avocados will add high levels of potassium to the diet. Potassium is balanced by sodium, and it is especially important to maintain this balance in adrenal fatigue. When the adrenals are weak, they will not be able to produce aldosterone. Aldosterone helps regulate potassium and sodium levels in your body. Low aldosterone means losing sodium in your urine, and retaining potassium. As the adrenals weaken, aldosterone levels decrease, and potassium levels may increase. As such, it is recommended to avoid a diet high in potassium.
However, in moderation, avocados can be a very beneficial addition to a healthy diet.
© Copyright 2017 Michael Lam, M.D. All Rights Reserved.