The Health Benefits of Avocado
By Dietitian Juliette Kellow BSc RD
Almost two thirds of the fat in avocados are monounsaturates, a type of fat that helps to lower levels of LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol, while maintaining or even increasing levels of HDL or ‘good’ cholesterol.
In one study of people with moderately high cholesterol levels, those who ate a diet high in avocados had significant reductions in total and LDL cholesterol, together with an 11 percent increase in HDL cholesterol, after just one week.
This is good news as two thirds of adults in the UK have high cholesterol, and this is one of the main risk factors for heart disease.
Avocados are also a rich source of vitamin E, which acts as a powerful antioxidant.
Research shows this nutrient may help to limit free radical damage, which can damage cells, increasing the risk of heart disease, cancer and even wrinkles.
Avocados contain an antioxidant called lutein that may help to protect against eye diseases such as cataracts and age related macular degeneration, a leading cause of blindness in elderly people.
Avocado Nutritional Value
Avocado might be higher in calories than most fruit and veggies, but it packs an amazing nutritional punch, so is actually very good value per calorie!
Try mashing avocado and using it in place of butter or spread or add to salads instead of mayo.
Half a medium avocado counts as one of your 5-a-day and contains 138 calories and 14.1g fat
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