Sunday, September 14, 2008
I have an avocado tree in my backyard and I love it! I've always loved the creamy taste of them spread on bread, cut up and put in a salad, or as an extra on my burger. So when we moved into our house, you can imagine my excitement when I found out I had my very own avocado tree in my backyard!
Did you know...
1/2 of a typical avocado contains approximately 160 calories ~ 20 calories less than a small bag of peanuts, and slightly lower than a small slice of cheddar cheese. In fact, here's a surprising finding...
Eating an avocado can be part of a successful weight management program because :
its monounsaturated oil speeds up the basal metabolic rate;
its oil content may help reduce overeating because you get full faster.
This same oil content reduces the urge to binge on unhealthy foods.
One hundred grams of an avocado (less than 1/2 a medium avocado) provide 3.2 grams of dietary fibre (0.9 grams soluble, 2.3 grams insoluble), giving it the highest concentration of dietary fibre of any commonly eaten fruit.
High fibre intake is important because it lowers risk of cardiovascular disease, some types of cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity.
Avocados do not contain cholesterol and are very rich in monounsaturated oil, an essential element for lowering LDL cholesterol levels (in other words, for lowering the bad cholesterol).
Mono and polyunsaturated oils make up more than 70% of the oil content in avocados.
These 'good' oils have been shown to protect the arterial walls and, therefore, protect against arterial heart disease, one of the country's major killers, which claims tens of thousands of lives every year.
An avocado is particularly rich in these important antioxidants : Vitamins E and C. Antioxidants protect the body from free radicals that cause gradual deterioration and aging. By eating an avocado a day you benefit from the daily intake of Vitamin E necessary for boosting energy levels and strengthening the immune system.
As for Vitamin C its benefits are numerous, ranging from common cold prevention to protecting the body from stressful situations. The dual combination of Vitamins C and E is a major advantage because one strengthens the fortifying action of the other.
To ripen avocados at home, keep them at room temperature until they are ripe.
To accelerate the ripening process, place avocados in the fruit bowl with other fruit (especially bananas),
or better still, pop them into a brown paper bag with the bananas.