Avocados have garnered immense appeal among the general populace for its delicious flavor and succulent texture. Avocados are the go to ingredient among health conscious individuals, as this nutritious fruit is loaded with important nutrients. Packed with healthy monounsaturated fatty acids, potassium and fiber, this versatile fruit has earned a host of accolades, from that of being a heart healthy fruit to being an aphrodisiac.
Here Are 10 Proven Health Benefits of Avocados:
For Healthy Skin
The high monounsaturated fatty acid content of avocados preserves the natural moisture levels of the skin. The potent antioxidants, including lutein, alpha and beta carotene, zeaxanthin as well as beta cryptoxanthin in avocados, protect the skin against free radical damage. These antioxidants also prevent premature aging of skin, by reducing the formation of fine lines and wrinkles. The high vitamin C content of this fruit aids in the formation of elastin and collagen (that preserves the structure and firmness of skin). Avocados are also loaded with the skin friendly vitamin E.
This super fruit is rich in natural oils which help to relieve osteoarthritis pain. The monounsaturated fats (oleic acid) in avocados help to promote cartilage repair. The anti-inflammatory property of MUFA’s (monounsaturated fatty acids) in avocados is also well documented. The phytosterols which are present in avocados prevent the synthesis of pro-inflammatory prostaglandin E2 within the connective tissues. This provides symptomatic relief in patients suffering from rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Defends Against Diabetes
The high monounsaturated fat content in avocados regulates blood sugar levels by reversing insulin resistance. The high dietary fiber content of this fruit can control Type II diabetes by ensuring better blood sugar control. Avocados have a surfeit of potassium, an important mineral which assists nerve function and prevents diabetic neuropathy.
Lowers LDL Cholesterol Levels
The monounsaturated fats or MUFA in avocados (specifically oleic acid), help raise HDL / good cholesterol levels while lowering LDL / bad cholesterol levels. Avocados are packed with cholesterol demolishing beta sitosterols which decreases the amount of cholesterol that is absorbed from food. Consuming avocados can also bring down triglyceride levels.
Helps Fight Cancer
Avocados have many powerful phyto-chemicals and anti-oxidants which help reduce the risk of cancer. The higher than normal amounts of oleic acid, lutein, carotenoids, glutathione and vitamin E in avocados lowers the risk of breast, lung, cervical, colon and throat cancer (to name a few). Free radical damage causes cell mutation that leads to cancer. The free radical scavenging ability of beta-sitosterol (phytosterol) in avocados is also well researched.
For Healthy Vision
Avocados have appreciable amounts of the antioxidant lutein. The carotenoid lutein protects the eyes against age related macular degeneration. The antioxidant lutein also reduces the incidence of eye diseases like cataract, due to oxidative stress damage.
The soluble and insoluble fiber in avocados promotes healthy digestion and it also lowers the risk of numerous digestive tract diseases including diverticulitis. The high vitamin C content of this fruit provides numerous digestive benefits, that encompasses reducing the risk of gastric cancer. The B-complex vitamins in avocados promote optimal digestion of food and absorption of nutrients.
Promotes Brain Health
Consuming avocados can significantly improve supply of oxygenated blood to the brain. Boosting blood flow to the brain is linked with improved cognition, memory functions and object recall. The healthy MUFA’s – monounsaturated fatty acids – which are present in avocados markedly improve the flexibility of brain cell membranes.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Avocados are an excellent source of potassium. A single cup of avocado provides nearly 708 mg of potassium. Eating potassium rich food like avocados can bring down overall blood pressure reading. The high fiber content of avocados also keeps blood pressure levels under control.
Enables Healthy Pregnancy
Avocados are packed with healthy nutrients including vitamins like B group of vitamins, Vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, minerals like potassium, magnesium, along with antioxidants like carotenoids and lutein. Avocados are an excellent dietary source of folate of vitamin B9. Eating foods which are rich in folate, early on in pregnancy, can prevent spina bifida and neural tube defects in the fetus.