Healthy Eating: Avocados
A few fast facts and a fab little recipe!
- Avocados are a fruit from the Lauraceae family which also includes cinnamon, camphor and bay laurel.
- Grown in the sub tropical regions of South America, there are two types commonly available in Britain: the Hass variety – with a darker, more nobbly skin, and the Fuerte variety – brighter green with a smooth skin.
- They contain the super-nutrient beta-sitosterol, which naturally helps to lower cholesterol.
- But aren’t they packed with calories? Avocadoes do have a high oil content, but it’s mainly the ‘good’ monounsaturated type, and half an average avocado only gives you 137 calories, which is less than 2 digestive biscuits!
- What else do they give us? Weight for weight, avocados are incredibly nutrient rich, topping the charts among the fruits for folate, potassium, magnesium and vitamin E. They are also great for B vitamins and fibre.
- Avocados are packed with lots of potentially cancer-fighting supernutrients called antioxidants such as ferulic and gallic acid. They are also rare source of pre-formed glutathione, a crucial detoxing antioxidant.
Quick serving idea: The green buttery flesh of an avocado is versatile and tasty. Why not try making avocado hummus – a nutritious snack, high in protein (from the chickpeas) and the benefits of avocado mentioned above. Serve with warm pitta bread or some fresh crunchy crudités such as carrots and celery for a snack or with a classic crispy jacket potato.
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