When you hear the term “superfood”, what foods come to mind? Berries and leafy greens are probably up there on the list. Have you ever heard someone say that avocado is a superfood? Sure, they can be a delicious addition to sandwiches and are an essential ingredient for any good guacamole. But are they actually good for you?
One of the things avocados are best known for is their healthy fat content. Avocados are a great source of monounsaturated fat, a healthy fat. They have essential micronutrients like potassium, folate, and vitamins B6, C, and E. They’re low in sugar, which is great for anyone watching their sugar intake. One avocado has about 14 grams of fiber, which is another essential component of a healthy, nutritious, balanced diet.
The nutrition avocados provide can offer multiple benefits. Monounsaturated fat helps lower LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) when consumed in moderation. Much of that monounsaturated fat is oleic acid, which is a heart-healthy fat that can help lower cardiovascular inflammation. Avocados’ micronutrients may help with certain cancers, arthritis, osteoporosis, depression, inflammation, maintaining healthy blood pressure levels, healthy vision, and healthy pregnancy. Eating fiber contributes to feelings of satiety, which means you’ll feel fuller longer. It also contributes to healthy digestive habits.
To get the most benefit from eating avocados, they should be consumed in moderation. Their high-fat content means that it’s easy to consume a lot of calories when eating avocados. A single serving is ⅓ of a medium avocado, which is about 50 grams or 1.7 ounces.
Avocados are best eaten when ripe. They can be stored at room temperature while you’re waiting for them to ripen, which can take 4-5 days. If you want to speed up the ripening process, put them in a paper bag with an apple or banana. The skins turn black or dark purple and will yield under gentle pressure when they’re ripe. At that point, they’ll be good to eat or refrigerate. Wash them before cutting into them. Mash, slice, or puree and add to toast, sandwiches, pasta, or whatever other dishes you wish.
Like most foods, avocados have a lot to offer those who eat them but are best consumed wisely. Feel free to add them to your favorite sandwich for extra creaminess or mash them with a bit of lime juice, salt, and cilantro for a delicious avocado toast spread. Just don’t go overboard with how much you eat.
Avocados are one of the key ingredients in The Nauvoo’s delicious ABLT. Learn more about what makes this sandwich so delectable here.