8 Redes om avokado’s lief te hê

Ons kosskrywers looove ‘n lekker get-together. Onlangs was dit weer so toe ‘n paar van ons mekaar vir die eerste keer in ‘n lang tyd weer kon sien en opvang wat intussen in elkeen se lewens gebeur het. Die South African Avocado Growers’ Association het vir hierdie heerlike samekoms gesorg.

Dis bykans deesdae heeljaar deur avokado-seisoen met die botterige, romerige groenskil avo’s soos Fuerte, Edranol, Ryan, Reed en Pinkerton wat van Maart tot Oktober beskikbaar is terwyl die ryk, neuterige donkerskil avokado’s soos Hass, Maluma Hass en Lamb Hass van Maart tot November in seisoen is.

As mens kyk na al die wonderlike voordele wat avokado’s bied, is dit net reg (en ook lekker) dat ons gereeld daarvan geniet – sekerlik die gewildste is op roosterbrood, maar ek hou net so baie daarvan in slaai of as ‘n salsa saam met Mexikaanse geregte of ‘n peuseldingetjie. Ook ideaal om deel te maak van ‘n Spaanse tapasbord of Griekse meze-bord. Beide die groen en donkerskil avokado’s is geskik vir hierdie peuselhappies. Onthou die groenskil avokado’s bly groen as hulle ryp is terwyl die donkerskil avokado’s in ‘n persswart verkleur as hulle gereed is om te eet.

8 Reasons to love avocado’s

For the heart

Published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition *1, a 2018 study found that those who eat avocados (compared to those who don’t) had higher levels of good HDL cholesterol. This is likely due to the higher levels of monounsaturated fat found in avocados. Avocados are also naturally cholesterol-free, an added bonus in heart health.

For healthy blood pressure

Avocados contain potassium, a mineral that when included as part of a healthy diet contributes to normal blood pressure. Avocados are also naturally free from sodium which may increase the risk of high blood pressure if consumed in excess.

For the eyes

Published in the scientific journal Nutrients *2 in 2017, researchers in America found that people who ate one avocado a day over six months had higher levels of lutein in the blood. Avocados are a source of lutein, a phytochemical that accumulates in the eye. Lutein, along with another phytochemical called zeaxanthin, has been found to be protective against a common eye disorder in the elderly called age-related macular degeneration.

For the brain

In the same study mentioned above, people who ate an avocado daily also had significant improvements in their memory, cognition and problem-solving abilities. The lutein in avocados, along with monounsaturated fats, fibre and other bioactive compounds, make this fruit particularly attractive for a healthy brain.

For pregnancy

A mother’s diet during pregnancy plays a crucial role in influencing the growth of her baby and healthy birth. Avocados are a nutrient-dense food consisting of a unique combination of dietary fibre, healthy fats, and vitamins and minerals such as potassium, magnesium, vitamin E, vitamin K and folate, all-important as part of a healthy diet for both mom and growing baby.

For the gut

The fibre in avocados is a unique combination of ¾ insoluble fibre and ¼ soluble fibre. Our gut needs different types of fibres to keep it healthy, each of which has different jobs in the gut. Soluble fibre acts like a mop and helps absorb fluid in the gut, forming a soft gel-like substance that helps the stool pass easily through the gut. Insoluble fibre acts like a broom, roughly sweeping through the length of the gut to remove waste. But fibre does far more than just keep us regular and may play a role in preventing colon cancer, lowering cholesterol, and even helping with weight loss.

For the waistline

Avocados can be helpful as a part of a successful energy-controlled diet for weight loss. Researchers have found that the monounsaturated fats in avocado give a quicker feeling of fullness which reduces overeating. The richness may also help make the diet more appetising, reducing the temptation to binge on foods high in sugar and bad fats.

For hair and skin

Avocados are high in a B-vitamin called biotin which contributes to the maintenance of normal hair and skin. Nourish your hair and skin from the inside out by adding avocado to your meals.

Information from the South African Avocado Growers’ Association.

References:
*1. Mahmassani HA, Avendano EE, Raman G, Johnson EJ. Avocado consumption and risk factors for heart disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2018;107(4): 523–536. https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/nqx078.
*2. Scott TM, Rasmussen HM, Chen O, Johnson EJ. Avocado Consumption Increases Macular Pigment Density in Older Adults: A Randomized, Controlled Trial. Nutrients.2017; 9, 919. Doi:10.3390/nu9090919

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