There is no medical, nutritional or numerical definition of superfood; it simply means that a food item is dense in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
Many superfoods also benefit your well being by keeping your heart healthy and reducing your risk of serious diseases. While the definition is arbitrary, avocados are worthy of super star status. Ounce by ounce, they are the highest of all fruits in folate, vitamin E, magnesium and, surprisingly, potassium. When you think potassium, you are probably thinking about bananas, but actually avocados contain 14 percent of your recommended daily dose of potassium compared to a banana that only contains 10 percent.
When I was younger, I suffered from stomach aches pretty often because I wasn’t getting enough potassium. If you’re prone to problems like this and can’t figure out the cause, then avocados could be your cure.
“Alligator pears” as they are sometimes referred, are also high in fiber, which helps contribute to weigh loss and lower your risk of diseases. They’re high in antioxidants as well, which is another reason why they’re good for preventing diseases and helping you function at 100 percent. Specifically, avocados have been linked to arthritis relief and the prevention of several cancers.
Possibly the best part of an avocados nutritional value is not just what it brings to the table, but its ability to toss the assist to other food. It helps your body absorb the nutrients of other vitamins, so that means avocados are helping you get the best bang for your buck.
‘Cados are also high in protein and will keep you full for longer. In fact, at four grams a serving, they pack more in their protein punch than any other fruit.
It’s also important to note that some protein is much better for you than others. But don’t worry; Avocados have the 18 types of proteins that you’re trying to find.
Avocados don’t contain any sodium or cholesterol, but they are high in fat. Don’t let your instincts fool you! This isn’t a bad thing.
The Good Kind of Fat
Contrary to the connotations, fat isn’t synonymous with unhealthy. Avocados’ fat comes mostly from oleic acid, which is a heart-healthy fatty acid. It may sound familiar because it’s what gives olive oil its fat as well. Oleic acid is a monounsaturated fat, aka one of the “good fats.” It’s recommended that monounsaturated fats make up 25-35 percent of your daily caloric intake.
These guys give you energy and can help reduce cholesterol. You read that right: a fat that is lowering cholesterol. Another reason avocados’ fat content is helpful is because many vitamins are fat-soluble, and they rely on fat in order to be absorbed in your system. Enjoying a healthy fat is the best way to get the benefits of all the vitamins you’re consuming. The negatives side effects from fats are found in things like saturated fats, and there are very little of those in avocados.
The fatty contents of avocados are also what give it the creamy texture and therefore make them a delicious substitute for rich ingredients and toppings. Avocados can be used instead of mayo, butter, sour cream, shortening and more. I’m a big fan of using avocados in my tuna and chicken salads to replace mayonnaise; it turns the dish into this healthy, very filling meal. I mix a cup of shredded chicken with an avocado, a spoonful of pesto, some sunflowers seeds and halved cherry tomatoes. It’s awesome. An avocado can also be added to your smoothie to give it a great creamy texture. Try a little almond milk, half an avocado, a scoop of vanilla protein powder and a handful of strawberries. You’ll swear you are drinking a milkshake.
Avocados are honestly my favorite food; I received a six pack filled with avocados instead of beer on my last birthday. I know you’re a fan of guacamole (who’s not), so make the most of breakfast, lunch or dinner by incorporating and substituting ‘cados into the meals you’re already eating every day.