For starters…for those who were wondering, avocado is actually a fruit, and a rich, creamy, and flavorful one at that! An avocado is actually a large berry with one seed….who knew? Avocados are our go-to for salads, dips, smoothies, muffins, and even our skin! We’ve all seen those picturesque snaps of avocado toast on Instagram and can all admit that we drool over them. We’re going to breakdown everything you need to know about this Insta-worthy superfood, including the good and the not so good….
Avocados are packed with healthy fats, nutrients, and vitamins. 1 avocado contains 322 calories, 29 grams of fat, 17 grams of carbs, 13 grams of fiber, 4 grams of protein, and only 1.3 grams of sugar. So as you could tell, avocados are super filling!
One avocado contains approximately 1/3 of the daily requirement of vitamin K and folate, lots of pantothenic acid, vitamin B6 and vitamin C, and monounsaturated fats.
- The nutrients in avocados can help protect the body from heart disease, cancer, degenerative eye and brain diseases.
- Avocados are proven to reduce belly fat (fat burns fat)!
- Avocado slows digestion, which keeps blood sugar from spiking after a meal.
- One avocado provides 1/3 of your recommended daily intake of folate, which helps form a baby’s brain and nervous system. The USDA recommends avocados as one of the best sources for some of the nutrients needed when pregnant.
- Fiber content- One avocado contains about 13 grams of dietary fiber. Adding 1/2 sliced avocado to your salad with surely keep you full for hours (just in time for your 3 pm pick me up).
- Skin- Avocados are great for your beauty routine as well. The glutamine amino acid in avocados helps cleanse skin and offers it enough protection against harsh environmental factors. D-manno-heptulose found in avocados has been shown to boost collagen formation (hello anti-aging!).
- Eye health- Avocados contain many carotenoids which are extremely important for one’s eye health.
*We know it’s hard for all of you to hear the downsides of eating avocados because lets face it…they are delicious. But, to keep your health knowledge well rounded, we wanted to mention this.
There is something called FODMAPs, fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols. They are sugars that have trouble being absorbed so they ferment….leading to bloating and other gut problems. (Look out for our post coming soon about going Low FODMAP for a few weeks). Avocados contain FODMAPs, and if you are FODMAP intolerant, consuming a large amount of avocados may lead to stomach pain, bloating, or constipation. But don’t now go and be afraid of avocados! Most people don’t have issues with high FODMAP foods so this doesn’t apply to everyone. But, if you notice any of these symptoms after eating avocados, you should speak to your doctor about how FODMAPS react with your body. So now everyone carry on and keep snapping those avocado toast pics.
- Use avocado oil in your baked goods, dressings, and dips for an extra creamy texture. (We love substituting vegetable oil with avocado oil in our homemade granola)
- Use an avocado in your smoothie! Combine 1 cup of unsweetened almond/coconut milk, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, and 1 frozen avocado in a blender and blend until smooth. Enjoy this creamy, delicious blend- perfect for a quick breakfast or pre-workout fuel!
- Checkout there amazing Chocolate Avocado Muffins made in a blender for a quick & easy treat
- DIY hair conditioning treatment- Most oils will leave a greasy feel on the surface of the skin. This is thankfully not the case with avocado oil. Avocado oil is easily absorbed by the skin so it works well for moisturizing a dry scalp. You can purchase avocado oil at most health food stores. Simply massage the avocado oil into your scalp and leave for 30 minutes, then shampoo hair.
- DIY avocado mask- Mash 1 avocado until smooth. Then, simply apply it all over your face with clean hands. Leave it on for 20 minutes and rinse with warm water, and pat dry with a clean towel. This will leave your skin feeling silky, refreshed, and totally glowing! (We recommend wearing a loose cotton headband to avoid frankenstein hair lol)
- Make your own guacamole that’s perfect for a summer BBQ, salad topping, or dip for your chips, crackers, or veggies. Here’s our homemade guacamole recipe that’s simple, healthy, and ofcourse delicious!
- Checkout this creamy avocado under-eye treatment to hydrate the skin and clear up under-eye bags.
- If you want luscious locks, try this pre-shampoo hair treatment. It leaves your hair smelling absolutely amazing and leaves you with hair you don’t want to let go of!
- Run yourself a warm bath to detox and relax and add in this avocado bath soak to moisturize and sooth your skin.
- If you’re in a rush and don’t have time to make fresh guacamole to eat with your cut up veggies for snack, try Wholly Guacamole packets. We buy the Organic, Classic, and Spicy variations. Because they are about 480 calories for a pack, try to limit yourself to 1/3 or 1/2 of the container. We like to scoop them into portion controlled containers to make sure our portions are always on track.
To clean living,
Jessica, Rachel, & Ariella