Until today, there are still misconception in society that avocado is not good for health. In fact, various studies have shown that avocado fruit is not proper to hostility. Besides having delicious flavor, avocado also contain many substances that are beneficial to health. If you include people who have been “hostile” avocado, now is the time to change your opinion.
Benefits of avocado – The history of avocado
Avocado is the original fruit from Central and South America and has been cultivated in the area since 8,000 BC. In the mid 17th century, avocado were introduced to Jamaica and spread to the tropical regions of Asia in the mid-1800s. Avocados are now grown in most tropical and subtropical countries.
Benefits of avocado – Promoting heart health and cardiovascular health
Avocados contain lots of fat, so in Latin America, avocado are even used as a substitute for butter. About 15 percent of avocado fruit is fat. However, fat in avocado is a healthy kind of fat, unsaturated fatty acids, which can help to lower cholesterol. In a study on people who are high in cholesterol, some of those who consume diets high in avocado experiencing real health improvements.
After a seven-day diet that includes avocado, they have reduced levels of total cholesterol and LDL (bad cholesterol) significantly, along with an increase of HDL (good cholesterol) about 11%. Besides containing unsaturated fatty acids, avocado is also a good source to potassium, one type of mineral that helps regulate blood pressure. Potassium in avocados is higher than in medium-sized of banana.
Adequate intake of potassium can help protect the body from blood vessels diseases, such as high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke.Other important nutrients contained in avocado that are useful for heart health is folic acid. A cup of avocado can meet 23% of daily folate requirement.
To determine the relationship between folate intake and heart disease, studies have been performed on more than 80,000 women for 14 years using dietary questionnaires. The researchers found that women who undergo high-folate diet, have heart attack risk 55% lower than those with low folate diet.Avocados contain carotenoids (lutein, zeaxanthin, alpha-carotene and beta-carotene) plus significant amounts of tocopherol (vitamin E).
In a laboratory study by UCLA, published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry, carotenoids and tocopherols in avocado inhibited the growth of prostate cancer cells. Another study showed that oleic acid in avocados also offer significant protection against breast cancer.Benefits of avocado – Improving liver function.
The study results in Japan on mice showed that avocado is beneficial for liver health. Researchers at the University of Shizuoka gave the mice whose hearts were damaged by the toxin galactosamine with 22 kinds of different fruits. They are specifically measured the distribution of enzymes in the liver. The result, avocado is a fruit the most effective to reduce liver damage.
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The researchers suspect that certain nutrients in avocados has healing effect on the liver, especially if the damage caused by viruses, such as hepatitis. How far these results can be transferred to humans, scientists can not say. And also is not yet clear, how many are needed and the extracts of avocado, which chemicals are involved in it.
Further studies are still needed.
Avocados are also a good source of vitamins A, C, E, K, vitamin B6, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, fiber, potassium, magnesium, and copper. Well, with so many benefits that are contained in avocados, it is very unfortunate if you missed this fruit in your menu.