Nutrition is an ever changing science. It isn't that long ago that foods that are now deemed good for you were once considered "bad" for you. Enter the avocado. Because of the high caloric and fat content of the avocado, many dietary notables told the public to stay away from this delicious fruit. Now it seems the avocado is considered a mainstay of a healthy diet.
Originating in Mexico, this pear-shaped treat is a fruit; although there has been discussion on the exact category the avocado falls in. It is, once and for all, a fruit. We are in love with the avocado. Avocados are now being touted for their fantastic nutritional value. Providing all eighteen essential amino acids necessary for the body to make a complete protein; and since the avocado is easily absorbed it is a valuable part of a daily diet for vegetarians and vegans. There is more to this fruit than meets the eye. An interesting fact is that unlike animal fat, the avocado does not contain saturated fats. Avocados are known to lower bad cholesterol while raising good cholesterol. Since HDL ("good" cholesterol) help regulate triglycerides, a key factor in chronic disease.
Avocados also help fight inflammation in the body. A healthy combination of Vitamins C and E, carotenoids, selenium, zinc, phytosterols (plant based) and omega-3 fatty acids make this a great fighter of inflammation and reduce the risk of other chronic illnesses like diabetes, different types of arthritis and heart disease.
Just how popular is the avocado? During the Superbowl alone, 158 billion avocados were eaten the United States on game day. Next time you are looking to spruce up your meal, add an avocado and reap the excellent health benefits. The uses are many when it comes to this versatile fruit. Use it in smoothies, an addition to a salad, baked with an egg, the possibilities are endless. Here is a simple recipe that is nutrient-dense and delicious.
Massaged Kale Salad with Avocado
1 large bunch kale, center stems removed and cut into bite-size pieces or thin strips
juice of 1 lemon (if you can't tolerate lemon, use 1 1/2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar)
1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 avocado, cut into small chunks
1 pinch black pepper
Put kale, olive oil and lemon juice in a large bowl. Massage the kale with clean hands for about 5 minutes until the kale becomes soft. Add the avocado.