Avocados are one of the most common foods for a Ketogenic diet. They are one of the best sources of healthy fats, which are key on this diet. They are loaded with Vitamin E, help prevent several types of cancer and helps to lower cholesterol. They don’t necessarily grow everywhere, but can be easily found is most any grocery store, year round.
Prostate Cancer Prevention
Avocados have been shown to inhibit the growth of prostate cancer.
Oral Cancer Defense
Research has shown that certain compounds in avocados are able to seek out pre-cancerous and cancerous oral cancer cells and destroy them without harming healthy cells.
Breast Cancer Protection
Avocado, like olive oil, is high in oleic acid, which has been shown to prevent breast cancer in numerous studies.
Avocados have more of the carotenoid lutein than any other commonly consumed fruit. Lutein protects against macular degeneration and cataracts, two disabling age-related eye diseases.
Avocados are high in beta-sitosterol, a compound that has been shown to lower cholesterol levels. In one study, 45 volunteers experienced an average drop in cholesterol of 17% after eating avocados for only one week.
One cup of avocado has 23% of the recommended daily value of folate. Studies show that people who eat diets rich in folate have a much lower incidence of heart disease than those who don’t. The vitamin E, monounsaturated fats, and glutathione in avocado are also great for your heart.
The high levels of folate in avocado are also protective against strokes. People who eat diets rich in folate have a much lower risk of stroke than those who don’t.
Better Nutrient Absorption
Research has found that certain nutrients are absorbed better when eaten with avocado. In one study, when participants ate a salad containing avocados, they absorbed five times the amount of carotenoids (a group of nutrients that includes lycopene and beta carotene) than those who didn’t include avocados.
Avocados are an excellent source of glutathione, an important antioxidant that researchers say is important in preventing aging, cancer, and heart disease.
Avocados are the best fruit source of vitamin E, an essential vitamin that protects against many diseases and helps maintains overall health.
Cooking with Avocados
Avocados can be used in a number of ways, the most common is probably guacamole. They can be added to most any salad or be eaten on their own with a squeeze or lemon or lime and a drizzle of olive oil. You can also use them in desserts, I make brownies with them (see my recipe here) and you can also use them in chocolate pudding or mousse. Avocado oil is one of the most healthy fat cooking oils available!
Avocados prefer warmer, more tropical climates and can actually be grown from the pit. You can also grow them indoors in a pot. Take the pit of an avocado, clean it and insert toothpicks to suspend it half submerged in a glass of water. It will start to sprout in about 2-5 weeks and once you have a sufficient root system, plant it in a pot with soil, rich in organic nutrients.