Saturday, November 17, 2012

18 Reasons to Include Avocado in your Diet

You may not be aware on the fact that just because a food has plenty of fat and calories in it, does not automatically mean it is leading to the weight gains. Yes, certain foods may cause you to gain weight because they provoke hormonal changes in your body, triggering cravings, or “rebound hunger.” One hunger-control hormone, leptin, becomes blunted by starchy, sweet, fatty, and refined-carbohydrate foods. That's why a bagel is fattening: It's a high-caloric load of refined carbohydrates that double-crosses your natural satisfaction response.

Avocados on the other hand aren't fattening, because they’re loaded with healthy fat and fiber and don't cause wild swings in insulin levels. So enjoy the fat in avocados, olive oil, and nuts. Research shows that diets containing upward of 50 percent fat are just as effective for weight loss as those that are low in fat.

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Avocado Short Biography

Avocados are native to Central America and were a favorite food of the Aztec Indians. It is part of the flowering plant family Lauraceae which includes camphor, bay laurel and cinnamon. Avocados are considered a fruit. They are cultivated in tropical climates throughout the world including southern Florida and California.

The oldest known evidence of avocado use as a food was found in a cave in Puebla, Mexico. The dates of the writings are thought to be from around 10,000 BC. The two major types of avocados are the Hass Avocado and Florida Avocado. The Hass avocado was named after Rudolph Hass who developed an avocado farm and obtained a patent for the avocados he was growing.

Florida avocados are significantly larger than the Hass avocados but are lower in overall fat and calories. The Hass avocado is more dense in monounsaturated fatty acids than the Florida avocado. The Hass avocado averages between 18-30% fatty acids while the Florida avocado has about 3-5% fats. This equals out to the Florida avocados being about 25-50% of the total fat content found in the Hass avocados.

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Why Avocado is a Super-food for Ageing Men?

The avocado is a wonder food when it comes to anti aging and longevity. Here are the 18 reasons, why you should consider it a part of your daily diet:
1. First of all, avocados are delicious. Eating healthy does not mean eating food, lacking taste.
2. Avocados are known food to boost body energy and stamina.
3. Avocados are filled with all sorts of great nutrients that help your body make repairs and live longer. One of them is Oleic Acid. This is a healthy monounsaturated fat that helps increase fat metabolism and as found out can be used to lower bad cholesterol while increasing good cholesterol. That allows improving the ratio between good and bad cholesterol, the action, which sometimes cannot be achieved even with medications, especially for people with such genetic predisposition. In one study, 45 volunteers experienced an average drop in cholesterol of 17% after eating avocados for only one week.
4. Avocados contain Potassium. Actually, a single cup of avocados contains about 25% of your daily supply of potassium. Potassium helps protect your heart and arteries and could reduce the risk of high blood pressure and stroke.
5. Avocados are very good source of soluble and insoluble dietary fiber. 100 g fruit provides 6.7 g or about 18% of recommended daily intake. Dietary fibers help lower blood cholesterol levels and prevent constipation.
6. Avocados contain Folate. Folate is a great micronutrient and the same cup of avocado contains around 23% of the folate you need each day. People who get the right amount of folate daily have significantly lower risk of heart attacks (by as much as 55%).
7. Avocados are a rich source of carotenoid anti-oxidants lutein and zeaxanthin as well as vitamin E (tocopherol). These substances help your body fight off damage from free radicals. This protects your organs and tissues from damage over time. Avocados are also an excellent source of glutathione, an important antioxidant that researchers say is important in preventing aging, cancer, and heart disease.
8. Avocados are a terrific complement to a vegetable based meal. Most vegetables, particularly in their raw state, contain a high amount of carotenoid based anti-oxidants. Studies have shown that these anti-oxidants are lipophilic (fat-loving) and are absorbed best in the body when combined with a healthy fat such as oleic acid.
9. Avocados are one of the best anti-aging foods that prevent wrinkles and skin aging. The D-manno-heptulose sugar that is found in avocados has been shown to improve the skin epidermis by boosting collagen formation.
10. Avocados also contain specific amino acids and carotenoid anti-oxidants that reduce age spots, soothe inflammation and heal scars and burns.
11. Avocados are a healthy source of magnesium. You may experience low levels of magnesium if you have suffered excessive vomiting or diarrhea or have diabetes, pancreatitis, hyperthyroidism or kidney disease.
12. Avocados have been considered as the fruit helping to prevent several types of cancer, as prostate cancer, oral cancer, and breast cancer. These avocados properties were validated in several scientific studies.
13. Avocados benefit your eyes. They have more of the carotenoid lutein than any other commonly consumed fruit. Lutein protects against macular degeneration and cataracts, two disabling age-related eye diseases.
14. Avocados help to increase both male and female libido. They contain very high levels of folic acid, and give the body sexual energy. Avocado is also high in vitamin B6, which is a potent hormone regulator. The folic acid content in avocado also helps in increasing the stamina and energy as well, which will help in one’s sexual performance in bed.
15. Avocado can also help you to deal with insomnia. A small portion of a food that's full of healthy fats is a perfect way to prepare your body for relaxing at night. Be sure not to eat too much at night - just a few slices is more than enough.
16. It is not surprising anymore that having so many goodies inside, avocado may help to treat and prevent depression. Avocados provide a source of tryptophan, containing 0.03 g per cup of sliced fruit. This amino acid must be derived from the foods you eat since your body does not produce it. Research published in the August 2004 issue of the "Archives of General Psychiatry" indicates that study subjects with relapsed depression demonstrated worsened symptoms when their brains contained less tryptophan. This compound becomes serotonin, the brain chemical that promotes relaxation.
17. The monounsaturated (good) fats in avocados can reverse insulin resistance, which helping to regulate the blood sugar levels. Avocados also contain more soluble fiber, which keep a steady blood sugar levels.
18. Avocados are one of the best natural mouth wash and bad breath remedies. It is cleanses intestine which is the real cause of coated tongue and this unpleasant condition.

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Avocado for your Skin

Avocado is also considered one of nature’s most effective moisturizers and has been shown to increase collagen production as well as reduce the size and appearance of wrinkles, according to a study at Technion-Israel Institute of Technology.

In addition to eating an avocado you can also mash the pulp and apply it as a masque directly to your skin. Avocado contains some of the best anti-aging amino acids and antioxidants used in many anti-aging creams.

If you suffer from dry spots caused by sunburn or eczema, or have been diagnosed with psoriasis, the healthy fat in avocado moisturizes, repairs distress and inflammation, and protects your skin from future damage. The oil from the avocado is the closest to the human body’s natural skin oil.
The pulp closest to the skin has the highest concentration of nutrients. Scrape it off and apply it directly to the skin for soft, supple results.

In Central and South America, every part of the avocado is considered important. Avocado oil is used to protect the skin from blistering sun, and harsh winds and rain. It is used on lips to prevent chapping. The skin, pulp and seed have been used to treat constipation, dandruff, bruises and wounds. Avocados health benefits are also a main source of dietary nutrition.

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Safety profile

Raw unripe avocados concentrated with tannins. High tannin content makes them bitter and unappetizing. Very high levels of tannins in the food prevent minerals like iron, calcium and phosphorus and vitamins from absorption in the gut.

Although very rare, avocados may result in allergic symptoms in some latex-sensitive persons. The symptoms may include itching in the throat, hives, runny nose, breathlessness etc. Often the symptoms are mild and self-limiting.

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