My New Obsession: Avocados

15 Jul
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Move over french fries and ice cream, I have a new foodie obsession. Bumpy on the outside and creamy on the inside, avacados have become my new struggle. It all started when I added avocados to my salad as a fill-in for the chicken I was too lazy to cook. The avocados proved to be a great alternative for the chicken while adding flavor to the salad.

My cravings for avocado were fueled by my other battle - an affection for Chipotle. No burrito bowl is complete without guacamole. So, I continued to enjoy my burrito bowls (with a side of chips and guacamole) for lunch thinking nothing of it.

I didn’t realize that I was having an issue until this past July 4th weekend at a barbecue with my family. I passed up my personal favorite - a juicy grilled steak with Peter Lugar sauce. All I wanted was anything that had avocado in it (I was fine with just a plain avocado too).

I was in utter disbelief. Did I really just pass up my favorite barbecue dish for a mushy fruit? But I paused for a second - I loved my mushy fruit. Was it really bad to love it? I looked into the health benefits of avocados and was pleasantly surprised by what I found.

Avocados are filling, and as such serve as a good meat substitute. Additionally, when added to a salad, they increase the absorption of carotenoids. The carotenoid lutein helps protect your vision as you age - helping to prevent cataracts and age related macular edema, both common problems as we age.

The beta-sitosterol in avocados has been found to lower high cholesterol in patients. Avocados contain vitamin B6, folic acid, vitamin E, and glutathione, all of which help to maintain healthy heart function and potassium helps to lower blood pressure. The monounsaturated fats regulate blood sugar levels.

Its folate helps to reduce the risk of stroke and prevent birth defects, while the phytonutrients help to reduce the risk of inflammatory disease, such as arthritis.

As a secondary effect of cleaning your small intestine, avocados help to prevent bad breath. Additionally, they help with skin tone, preventing wrinkles, and repairing damaged skin.

Despite all these benefits, avocado, like everything else, is subject to the law of the universe - everything in moderation. So while I am relieved that my obession has provided me with all these benefits, avocados have also been found to contribute to weight gain as it is highly concentrated in calories. My advice to fellow “avocadoics” - continue to get the fix of guac, but try to do so moderately.  

Tiffany Truong

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Last modified on Tuesday, 15 July 2014 16:25

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