Avocados have finally been getting the attention they deserve as a superfood. After numerous studies, we all finally understand the powers of healthy fats, like the monounsaturated ones found in this mighty little fruit, and what they can do both for our health and our skin. Avocados also contain omega-3 fatty acids, and lutein, which is essential for eye health. And one study found that eating half an avocado at lunchtime keeps you fuller for hours longer after your meal, making it a healthy way to curb appetite.
Now, the latest avocado news gives us permission to eat some every single day. A study out of Penn State University looked at three different diets, all designed to lower cholesterol. With all three, after five weeks following each of the diets, participants experienced a reduction in LDL (bad cholesterol) and total cholesterol, but the diet that incorporated one Hass avocado every day lowered LDL levels even more than the others — by 13.5 mg/dL, versus 8.3 mg/dL and 7.4 mg/dL on the other diets.
The researchers note that this was a controlled study, ie.e not exactly a real-world situation. But their findings nevertheless are proof of how healthy fats can be an asset for lowering cholesterol. “We need to focus on getting people to eat a healthy diet that includes avocados and other food sources of better fats,” said Penny M. Kris-Etherton, Distinguished Professor of Nutrition at Penn State.
Their findings are in line with most heart-healthy diets and recommendations from the American Heart Association — which suggests replacing saturated fats with monounsaturated or polyunsaturated ones to lower heart disease risk.
While guacamole might be your go-to, be wary of gorging on too many corn chips with it; the sodium and calories aren’t exactly the right addition to a healthy diet. Instead, try using avocado in new ways — as a substitute for mayo on sandwiches, adding it to a salad, or using it on toast instead of butter.We’ve heard there could be an avocado shortage on the horizon — high demand + California droughts = bad news. So fingers crossed this new info doesn’t make it too much harder for us to get our hands on some of our favorite savory green fruit (excuse me as I quickly run to the grocery store to satisfy my guac craving…).
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